In a statement, former President Donald Trump criticized Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, accusing him of being a “criminal” for donating $400 million to local election offices last year.
Trump, who lost to President Biden by a small margin in a handful of swing states, told political news host Bill O’Reilly last week that Zuckerberg’s donation to local election offices was “illegal” after an FGA analysis found that the funding increased Democratic turnout in key states like Georgia.
“Mark Zuckerberg, in my opinion, a criminal, is allowed to spend over $400 million and therefore able to change the course of a Presidential Election, and nothing happens to Facebook,” Trump said in an emailed statement to supporters, according to The Independent.
Last year, Zuckerberg and his wife, Priscilla Chan, allegedly donated hundreds of millions of dollars to election officials who were struggling to secure enough funding to implement safety precautions and engage voters in safe, in-person voting — ensuring the election would not be disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
After many lawsuits were filed to block the funds, Facebook’s chief executive, Mark Zuckerberg knocked down claims that the organizations receiving donations had a partisan purpose.
“These funds will serve communities throughout the country — urban, rural and suburban — and are being allocated by non-partisan organizations,” Zuckerberg concluded.
A spokesman for Zuckerberg and Chan responded to Trump’s comment in a statement to Business Insider.
“When our nation’s election infrastructure faced unprecedented challenges last year due to the pandemic and the federal government failed to provide adequate funds, Mark and Priscilla provided funding to two non-partisan organizations that helped cities and states ensure that residents could vote regardless of their party or preference.”
The spokesman also stated that the funds were not just handed to Democratic districts, but that more Republican districts applied for and were equally rewarded.
Trump sharpens his attacks on Zuckerberg as he promotes his latest project, a new communications platform aimed at giving people an alternative to Facebook and Twitter. He introduced the website as a “beacon of freedom” and a “place to speak freely and safely.”
The Trump Media and Technology Group (TMTG) announced last week that it will establish a publicly listed company as an alternative to liberal media and will launch a social network called TRUTH Social.