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Twitter on Friday suspended the accounts of President Trump’s allies, former Gen. Mike Flynn and lawyer Sidney Powell, who backed his claims that fraud handed victory to President-elect Joe Biden.
The action follows the Wednesday attack on the Capitol by a mob of Trump supporters after Trump told them to “fight like hell” to persuade Congress to overturn Biden’s win.
Powell recently claimed that Trump offered her a White House job to investigate voter fraud, but that senior White House staff — fearful of her wild claims of fraud — proceeded to block her from Trump’s orbit.
Flynn reportedly floated Trump declaring martial law during a post-election Oval Office meeting, though he denied it.
A Twitter spokesperson cited their links to the QAnon movement, rather than their claims about election fraud. QAnon is a convoluted conspiracy theory alleging “deep state” corruption involving child abuse.
The spokesperson said: “The account(s) has/have been suspended in line with our policy on Coordinated Harmful Activity. We’ve been clear that we will take strong enforcement action on behavior that has the potential to lead to offline harm, and given the renewed potential for violence surrounding this type of behavior in the coming days, we will permanently suspend accounts that are solely dedicated to sharing QAnon content.”
Flynn posted a video in July appearing to pledge allegiance to the QAnon movement. Many adherents of QAnon were present at the Capitol break-in.
Flynn was Trump’s first White House national security adviser, but Trump fired him weeks into his administration for allegedly lying to Vice President Mike Pence about calls with Russia’s then-ambassador.
Flynn pleaded guilty in 2017 to lying to the FBI and agreed to cooperate with special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation. He also admitted he worked as an unregistered agent of Turkey. Trump pardoned Flynn last month.
Powell represented Flynn as he sought to withdraw his guilty plea before sentencing. The Justice Department sided with Flynn, but a federal judge refused to immediately drop the case before Trump’s pardon.
Trump’s claims of voter fraud and those advanced by Powell have been debunked by state officials and dismissed by courts..
The social network on Wednesday suspended Trump’s account after he issued statements that appeared to glorify the Capitol break-in, which resulted in five deaths. Trump was allowed back on Twitter after deleting the posts.
Facebook and Instagram banned Trump from posting through at least Biden’s inauguration on Jan. 20.
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