- Billionaire Tesla CEO Elon Musk will soon be the new owner of Twitter if the deal closes.
- Musk will reinstate former US President Trump's account once he owns the social network, he said.
- He called Twitter's decision to ban Trump, "morally wrong and flat out stupid."
- For more stories, go to www.BusinessInsider.co.za.
Billionaire Tesla CEO Elon Musk would reinstate former US President Donald Trump's Twitter account should his acquisition of the social network successfully close later this year.
"I would reverse the permaban," Musk said during a live interview with the Financial Times on Tuesday afternoon. "We should not have permabans."
Moreover, he called Twitter's original decision to ban Trump in January 2020, "a morally bad decision, to be clear, and foolish in the extreme."
At the time, Twitter banned Trump's account "due to the risk of further incitement of violence," in the wake of the attempted insurrection at the US Capitol on January 6, 2020.
Pushed specifically on the logic behind Trump's ban, Musk said it still didn't justify a permanent ban.
"I think permabans fundamentally undermine trust in Twitter as a town square where everyone can voice their opinion," he said. "If there are tweets that are wrong and bad, those should be either deleted or made invisible, and a temporary suspension is appropriate. But not a permanent ban."
The ban didn't serve to "end Trump's voice," he said. "It amplified it among the right. And this is why it's morally wrong and flat out stupid."
Musk has repeatedly referred to Twitter as "the de facto public town square" of the modern era — the digital equivalent of a public forum. To that end, he's been critical of Twitter's decision to permanently ban Trump from the site many times before.
Even if Trump's account were reinstated, it's not clear if Trump would come back. He's repeatedly said that he would not, and is instead sticking with the social media service he started after exiting office, Truth Social.