Notorious former Ku Klux Klan grand wizard David Duke has had his Twitter account permanently banned after previously being suspended – less than a month after he endorsed Donald Trump for re-election.
A high-profile white supremacist campaigner and agitator who has unsuccessfully run for public office several times, Mr Duke is also known for his advocacy for outlandish conspiracy theories, including that the world is run by a Jewish cabal that controls politics, the media and even the internet.
“The fact that Google and Youtube are 100% owned and run by radical Zionists who give millions of dollars to Jewish causes and to pro Israel-biased Wikipedia,” he wrote in one now-archived tweet, “has no impact on the tech company that controls 85 percent of all Search engines. Got that? Goy?”
Mr Duke has also lately been trafficking in disinformation around the coronavirus pandemic, accusing the Centres for Disease Control of radically overstating death totals for political reasons and opining that “people who refuse the mask are the real heroes”.
According to Twitter, Mr Duke was deemed to have a history of violating the platform’s policies, which sanction tweets that promote or threaten violence against people based on race, religion or other categories. Asked for comment, a spokesperson confirmed Mr Duke’s account “has been permanently suspended for repeated violations of the Twitter Rules on hateful conduct. This enforcement action is in line with our recently-updated guidance on harmful links.”
Mr Duke endorsed Donald Trump’s re-election at the start of July, also imploring the president to replace his current vice president Mike Pence with Fox News host Tucker Carlson. “Trump & Tucker is the only way to stop the commie Bolsheviks!” tweeted Mr Duke. “It is the only path to beat them! #TrumpTucker2020”.
A writer for Mr Carlson’s show recently resigned from Fox News after it emerged he had posted racist and obscene messages on an online forum.
The Independent has contacted Mr Duke for comment.