Former President Donald Trump on Tuesday launched a new way to communicate with his followers, on the eve of a decision by Facebook’s oversight board about whether to allow him back onto the platform.
The posts that appear on the site thus far largely appear to be a collection of the press release statements he has issued in recent days via his other channels, including his Save America PAC, and is titled “From the Desk of Donald J. Trump.”
Posted atop the page is a 30-second launch video hyping the project as “a beacon of freedom” and a “place to speak freely and safely.”
Visitors are able to “like” Trump’s messages, as well as repost them to Facebook and Twitter, though it does not appear to allow users to comment on or otherwise engage with the posts.
As such, they’re closer to a blog or collection of past news releases that many politicians have on their official websites than a true rival to the Big Tech giants Trump and his allies frequently rail against. Conservatives have claimed that social media companies are biased against them and have tried to set up several alternatives they believe are friendlier to free speech.
Trump’s post-presidency team has for weeks teased a new platform that would replace social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook, which dramatically shut down the president’s accounts in the weeks before he left office after years of struggling with how to handle falsehoods and incendiary posts coming from a sitting president and other political figures.
On Wednesday, Facebook’s oversight board is expected to announce whether it will allow Trump to return to the platform. Trump’s prior favorite platform, Twitter, permanently blocked his account after the Jan. 6 insurrection at the Capitol whereas Facebook opted to leave open the possibility that his page would be restored.
Trump has recently begun stepping up his public presence, both in terms of the statements put out by his office and the number of interviews he has granted to friendly conservative media outlets. And his allies are ramping up another attempt to oust Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) — who voted to impeach Trump after the Jan. 6 riots and who remains fiercely critical of the GOP standard-bearer — from her House Republican leadership position.
The former president has vowed to remain a powerbroker within the Republican Party and has not ruled out a third presidential run, a departure from other recent presidents who typically step back from politics after their time in the White House.
Fox News first reported on Trump’s venture.