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Are you able to win a Senate race with out a single tweet?

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Google and Fb alumna Lexi Reese launched her marketing campaign for US Senate in California Thursday — however you gained’t see that announcement on Twitter.

Reese, who beforehand helped lead promoting for each Fb and Google, stated her marketing campaign gained’t be utilizing Twitter as a result of Elon Musk’s management on the firm. Particularly, Reese cited the platform’s reported rise in hate speech and racial slurs since Musk’s 2022 takeover as the explanation her marketing campaign is avoiding it.

“We must always all assist — as a lot as doable — individuals and companies with whom we share values and motivations,” Reese stated in an announcement to The Verge Wednesday. “Beneath Elon Musk’s management, Twitter has been more and more divisive, racist, and sexist. It’s a dumpster hearth and it’s harmful for democracy.”

Whereas Reese nonetheless plans to make use of different mainstream websites, like Fb and Instagram, to achieve voters, her choice to abstain from Twitter exhibits how politically fraught a candidate’s selection of social platforms has develop into lately. Musk’s possession of Twitter has been essentially the most divisive.

Quickly after Musk bought the corporate final November, superstar customers from Gigi Hadid to Trent Reznor started leaving the platform in droves, decrying a rise in toxicity underneath its new management. However Republicans welcomed the change, suggesting Musk would usher in a extra conservative-friendly period of platform moderation.

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Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, Republican presidential candidate, introduced his election bid in a glitchy Twitter Space with Musk and tech investor David Sacks in Might, seemingly in an try to achieve Musk’s rising conservative viewers. Robert F. Kennedy Jr., an anti-vaccine activist and Democratic presidential candidate, joined Musk in his personal Twitter House in June. Kennedy has not too long ago garnered GOP assist largely as a result of his previous bans for spreading misinformation on platforms like Instagram.

For the previous two election cycles, politicians have been cut up on TikTok as effectively. Final week, NBC News reported that President Joe Biden’s reelection marketing campaign gained’t be becoming a member of the favored video platform as a result of his administration’s perception that the app poses a threat to US nationwide safety. Different Democratic candidates, like Rep. Jamaal Bowman (D-NY) and Sen. John Fetterman (D-PA), have used TikTok to achieve voters, regardless of these accusations. The Democratic Nationwide Committee additionally has a TikTok account the place it posts content material in assist of Biden to its over 300,000 followers.

Nonetheless, Twitter has been a troublesome behavior to interrupt for politicians who’ve been utilizing the platform as a main technique of communication for greater than a decade. Even a few of Musk’s most ardent progressive critics, like Sens. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) and Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), nonetheless preserve Twitter accounts regardless of frequently criticizing the billionaire. Reese stop Twitter final yr after Musk purchased the corporate.

“Not one of the platforms are good, and we as a rustic desperately want rules to curb the psychological well being illnesses and disinformation aided and abetted by social media,” Reese stated. “Till that occurs, I’ll be on most different platforms to have an ongoing dialog — navigating variations with respect about how we will make the California dream a actuality for everybody.”



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