It’s been a long six months for thirsty Trump supporters left in the social media desert without an oasis or canteen of water to wet their MAGA whistles. On Saturday, June 26, a new account – Donald J. Trump – appeared on the YouTube rival platform Rumble and started excited tongues a-wagging. A quick confirmation by Rumble and Trump insider Dan Scavino signaled a new presence going viral for The Donald. The first video live-streamed was of the rally in Wellington, OH, on Saturday evening.
A spokeswoman for the former president, Liz Harrington, explained to Reuters the jump to Rumble: “It is a great way to reach the American people in a time of the unprecedented assault on free speech in our country by Big Tech tyrants.”
But all is not well in the land of the free – expressly, free-speech claimants – as some social media sites and declared Trump enemies seem downright peeved at the former president’s desire to speak unfettered.
Why So Mad?
The head-scratching response to Trump’s less-than-trumpeted return came from two notable sources: Gab and Parler. Conservatives flocked to these during the heated moments of election 2020 and the fallout of the Jan. 6 debacle at the Capitol. But these sites, whose meteoric rise in numbers after the declaration of Joe Biden as the 46th president, are now on record as being torqued at 45.
Andrew Torba, the CEO of Gab, made a stink on his site: “On the day President Trump joined Rumble they changed their terms of service to ban ‘hate speech’ with an explicit ban on ‘anti-Semitic’ messages, also known as any and all criticism of Israel and/or Jewish people. No mention of banning Anti-White hatred, which is still allowed.” Torba pointed the finger at Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner for adding that caveat to community guidelines.
John Matze, who founded the conservative platform Parler, was not any kinder and slammed Trump for caving to Big Tech: “I wonder how much equity or money Rumble had to give … The same rumble that runs entirely on Google ads. Google analytics, etc … IE big tech. Not that I think Trump’s brand is worth anything anymore.” Ironically, Matze also kvetched on Gab since Parler ran him out on a rail last February for his aggressive content tamp-down. Parler investor Dan Bongino offered the back story, telling Rolling Stone: “The company’s vision as a free speech platform was mine and the two other owners.”
Ready or Not, Here He Comes
A critical thinker may surmise that Trump is testing the waters for his own race to return to the White House. But on his extremely long to-do list that may enable another rise to the occasion, running for president is midway on the roster. With 2022 elections looming, Trump appears to be playing the political executioner of those who voted against him in his second impeachment trial, a hurdle to clear before moving forward. If he has the juice to rid America of his Republican enemies while helping install a more MAGA-oriented group of congressional newbies, a presidential bid may be all but declared.
Until then, Trump it appears will utilize Rumble as his go-to platform to message the masses. And with Rumble’s rise in the first quarter of this year to 31.9 million members, it might have been the perfect selection after the mass-platform censoring imposed by Big Tech. Is the Trump drought officially over? It seems not. But the first sip of success is sitting well with his base of support today.
Read more from Sarah Cowgill.