The Facebook Oversight Board’s decision to uphold former President Trump’s ban from the platform could be “devastating” to his digital marketing and fundraising efforts for 2024, a source with Trump’s Facebook strategy told Fox News Wednesday.
The board on Wednesday upheld Trump’s ban from Facebook and Instagram, but said it was “not appropriate” for Facebook to impose the “indeterminate and standardless penalty of indefinite suspension.” The board gave Facebook six months to review the “arbitrary” indefinite ban, saying in a tweet that the company “violated its own rules.”
FACEBOOK OVERSIGHT BOARD UPHOLDS TRUMP BAN BUT CALLS INDEFINITE SUSPENSION ‘NOT APPROPRIATE’
But sources close to the former president expressed concern about the ban, saying it could have an impact on his ability to raise money for a potential 2024 campaign.
“His cost of fundraising just significantly increased because Facebook has the largest number of conservatives online to advertise to,” one source told Fox News, noting that the decision “makes it much more costly for 2024,” due to Facebook’s impact on Trump’s 2016 victory.
“It is devastating,” the source said. “Can he still win in 2024? Yes. But it just got a lot more difficult.”
The source told Fox News that Trump could create his own social media platform, but insisted Trump would need to get “tens of millions of supporters to sign up before 2024.”
“Facebook has 70 million possible Trump voters to communicate to, and it took them over a dozen years to get to their size,” the source said. “It is simply not possible for him to get to that size in two years.”
Trump, on Tuesday afternoon, rolled out a new communications platform, “From the desk of Donald J. Trump.”
The space allows Trump to post comments, images and videos, and allows followers to share the former president’s posts to Twitter and Facebook, though it does not have a feature letting users “reply” or engage with Trump’s posts.
“In a time of silence and lies,” a video Trump posted to the platform Tuesday night says. The video then plays news reports describing his suspension from Twitter.
“A beacon of freedom arises. A place to speak freely and safely,” the video continues, showing the new platform. “Straight from the desk of Donald J. Trump.”
The technology is powered by Campaign Nucleus — the “digital ecosystem made for efficiently managing political campaigns and organizations,” created by his former campaign manager, Brad Parscale.
“This is just a one-way communication,” one source familiar with the space told Fox News. “This system allows Trump to communicate with his followers.”
TRUMP LAUNCHES NEW COMMUNICATIONS PLATFORM MONTHS AFTER FACEBOOK, TWITTER BAN
Trump’s new platform surfaced Tuesday, after advisers had told Fox News that the former president planned to “move forward” to create a social media platform of his own after being banned from Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and Snapchat after the Capitol riot.
“President Trump’s website is a great resource to find his latest statements and highlights from his first term in office, but this is not a new social media platform,” senior advisor Jason Miller told Fox News. “We’ll have additional information coming on that front in the very near future.”
Trump, during an interview on the Daily Wire Tuesday night, said he’ll “be doing a platform at some point,” but called his new communications platform “more elegant than Twitter.”
“I’m going a little bit different category, because I put out a press release and it gets massive coverage,” he said during the interview. “I put out press releases, you know, a few a day, and I can make them actually more than the 220 or 240 or whatever it is characters.”
But others close to the former president, while slamming Big Tech for silencing conservatives, disagreed that the Facebook ban would have an impact on Trump’s 2024 fundraising activities.
“There are a million different ways Donald Trump can raise money at this point and for someone who has not announced an intention to run, he is doing so at a pace I’ve never seen in Republican politics,” former Trump campaign national press secretary Hogan Gidley told Fox News.
“It is ridiculous what Big Tech is doing to silence conservatives, especially Donald Trump, but Donald Trump has beaten the system and the political powers that be so many times now, I’ve lost count,” Gidley said.
“This will be no different,” he continued. “This will ultimately result in him winning one way or the other.”
Another source close to the former president also disagreed— telling Fox News that Trump was still able to raise millions of dollars, even after being banned from Facebook in January.
“It certainly isn’t helpful, but at the same time, it is difficult to say its devastating, especially looking at his track record,” the source told Fox News. “Looking at the numbers he raised even after he was kicked off suggests otherwise.”
The source added: “Would he have raised more if he was still on? Probably, but his ability to raise money is unique.”
Fox News reported last month that Trump’s leadership PAC has $85 million cash on hand—funds likely to be used to help Republican candidates across the nation in their efforts to take back the majority in the House of Representatives and the Senate in the 2022 midterm elections.
TRUMP BAN: REPUBLICANS THREATEN TO BREAK UP FACEBOOK AFTER OVERSIGHT BOARD DECISION
Save America PAC, which Trump formed just after Election Day, started 2021 with at least $31.2 million, according to a report filed in February with the Federal Election Commission.
Meanwhile, Facebook, responding to the board’s decision Wednesday, said they believe their move to ban Trump in January was “necessary and right,” and are “pleased the board has recognized that the unprecedented circumstances justified the exceptional measure we took.”
Facebook said it will “now consider the board’s decision and determine an action that is clear and proportionate.”
“In the meantime, Mr. Trump’s accounts remain suspended,” Facebook said, adding that they are reviewing the boards recommendations on policies surrounding political figures.