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President Donald Trump confirmed that Facebook was restoring the account of a New Jersey group of supporters with thousands of members after inexplicably removing it.
The president announced Sunday that the “New Jersey Women for Trump” page on Facebook was being “restored immediately” after the social media platform removed it on Saturday with no explanation or warning. Trump had demanded Facebook reinstate the account representing 29,000 members and followed up later with a tweet noting their admission of an “error” being made.
Days after Facebook, Google and Twitter CEO’s testified at a Senate hearing on allegations of anti-conservative bias, Facebook took down the account for the New Jersey women’s group of Trump supporters, prompting Trump to tweet “@Facebook Put them back NOW!” in response to a report on the move.
“Being restored immediately,” he followed up later on Sunday morning. “@Facebook stated that they made an ‘enforcement error’. Thank you!”
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 1, 2020
“This group was removed in error and we have since restored it,” a spokesperson for Facebook told DailyMail.com.
Priscilla Confrey, co-director of New Jersey Women For Trump, announced the return of the page on Facebook.
OMG ALL YOU BEAUTIFUL PATRIOTS WE ARE BACK UP!!!! WE DID IT!!! POWER TO THE PEOPLE!! DON’T TREAD ON ME!! THANK YOU ALL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
However, she told NJ.com that despite the reinstatement by Facebook, administrators for the private group have not been able to approve any new member requests.
Confrey had shared that Facebook had flagged certain posts in the last few weeks before taking the page down. But the suspension of the account was not expected by the group which launched another page by Sunday morning which already has over 27,000 members.
“It was a lot of work over the past year for a private group to just be shut down without notification,” she said. “Three days before Election Day? That is absolutely appalling. I just think these companies, these social media groups, have too much power. They offer to you to open up a group on their social media platform, and you could have 30,000 members, and they shut it down without telling you anything.”
“People are really, really mad,” she added. “When you have that many people and they’re shut down, they feel silenced.”
Tracey Lore, co-director of N.J. Women For Trump, recalled how the group grew in leaps beginning in the summer of 2019.
“In one day we got like 1,000 members,” she told NJ.com. “And it was true grassroots, people reaching out to friends. Now we’re at nearly 30,000 in a supposedly blue state.”
“People share memes and all that fun stuff, but at end of the day, it’s truly about garnering support and translating that into something real,” she said. “We realized in 2016 Trump lost by about half a million votes in New Jersey. But there were almost 2 million people who didn’t vote. How many of those were people who listened to polls and decided to stay home?”
Twitter users slammed Facebook for the “error.”
It’s a sad day when FACEBOOK takes down NJ Women for Trump page – just because they can. In 2 days, we have #4MoreYears to show them who’s boss.
— Dean Browning (@DeanBrowningPA) November 1, 2020
Facebook made an “enforcement error” to a NJ Women for Trump FB group…that’s too much of a coincidence that it’s an error. Censorship runs deep with social media moguls like FB and Twitter https://t.co/PODNVoBEfL
— Mike B (@MjBri3r) November 1, 2020
Haha FB, “enforcement error” on a strong 29k follower NJ Women for Trump page with a large reach in blue NJ?🤔 pic.twitter.com/z5jmgfIRRe
— Lisa 🇺🇸🏃🏽♀️🏃🏼♀️ (@AralynnsMomma) November 1, 2020