By James Oliphant
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Elon Musk’s takeover bid for Twitter has prompted speculation that he would restore Donald Trump’s account if he succeeds in purchasing the social-media platform. But the former U.S. president says he “probably” would not go back.
In an interview with Sirius XM’s Americano Media on Wednesday, before Musk’s announcement, Trump said he “probably wouldn’t have any interest” in returning to the platform, where he had almost 90 million followers.
“You know, Twitter has become very boring. They’ve gotten rid of a lot of their good voices … a lot of their conservative voices,” Trump said.
Musk, the Tesla CEO and billionaire entrepreneur, said he hopes to take Twitter private with the intent of making it a platform for free speech.
Trump was permanently suspended by Twitter following the assault on the U.S. Capitol by his supporters on Jan. 6, 2021. The platform cited the risk of “further incitement of violence.”
The attack on Congress followed a speech by Trump in which he reiterated false claims that his 2020 election loss to Democrat Joe Biden was because of widespread fraud, an assertion rejected by multiple courts and state election officials.
Twitter’s decision was criticized by Trump’s Republican Party and others as an attempt to stifle conservative voices and an attack on free speech.
Trump has since launched his own social media platform, Truth Social, which has been plagued by technical issues and long waiting times to sign up.
In the interview, Trump said he would wait until after the U.S congressional elections in November to announce whether he will run for another presidential term. But, he said, “I think a lot of people are going to be very happy,” about his decision.
(Reporting by James Oliphant; Editing by Ross Colvin and Daniel Wallis)