On Friday morning, President Donald Trump retweeted a satirical article about the recent Twitter outage being a plot in favor of former Vice President Joe Biden, seemingly falling for the fake story.
Coincidentally before Trump’s and Biden’s separate town halls on Thursday night, Twitter experienced widespread technical problems across the U.S. and other parts of the world. The satirical website The Babylon Bee published an article titled “Twitter Shuts Down Entire Network to Slow Spread of Negative Biden News,” making light of the unfortunate timing before the town halls.
Trump shared the article, seemingly in earnest, writing “Wow, this has never been done in history. This includes his really bad interview last night. Why is Twitter doing this. Bringing more attention to Sleepy Joe & Big T.”
Many users quickly pointed out in the comments that the post was satirical and intentionally false, but the fact appeared lost on the president. Twitter released a statement on Thursday night, explaining that the technical issues were “caused by an inadvertent change we made to our internal systems.”
Trump followed up two hours later, calling out Twitter’s trending topics. “Big T was not a reference to me, but rather to Big Tech, which should have been properly pointed out in Twitter’s Fake Trending Section!” he wrote.
Trump also took to Twitter to criticize ABC host George Stephanopoulos, who moderated Biden’s town hall that was held at the same time as Trump’s on NBC with Savannah Guthrie.
“Sleepy Joe Biden had a very bad showing last night, despite the fact that @GStephanopoulos didn’t ask him any questions on his being a ‘corrupt politician.’ Big Tech & Lamestream Media are working hard to hide this corruption!!!” he wrote.
Trump’s town hall on NBC drew controversy earlier on Thursday for taking place at the same time as Biden’s. After more than 100 actors sent a petition to NBC to change the timing, NBCUniversal News Group chairman Cesar Conde said the company had chosen the time slot out of fairness after airing a previous Biden town hall at the same time.
During a rally in Greenville, N.C., Trump called his own town hall a “con job” and a “free hour of television,” claiming that he was being “set up” by NBC and Comcast.
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