Who is Charlie Kirk? Turning Point founder's Twitter account blocked for spreading voting ‘misinformation’
One of President Donald Trump’s staunch supporters, Charlie Kirk’s, Twitter account, which is followed by 1.8 million people, has been blocked for spreading voting “misinformation”. The 27-year-old lashed out at the social media platform as he told Fox News he was in a "hostage situation", while Twitter stated one of Kirk’s posts breached rules "against posting misleading information about voting."
Who is Charlie Kirk?
A conservative activist and ally of the president, Kirk hosts the podcast, ‘The Charlie Kirk Show’, which according to the Apple News charts has become one of the top ten podcasts in recent times. He is from Illinois, Chicago, and has been dubbed as “a rock star among millennial conservatives” and “the conservative boy wonder”. However, some of his critics have called his ways “unethical”, “hateful” and even “racist.”
In addition to hosting the podcast, Kirk is also the author of the book, ‘The MAGA Doctrine: The Only Ideas that Will Win the Future’, which was on the number one bestseller position on both Amazon and New York Times for several weeks. In August, Kirk said that the president was "the bodyguard of western civilization" during the opening speech at the Republican convention. He also said that Trump "started a movement to reclaim our government from the rotten cartel of insiders that have been destroying our country,” adding: “We may not realize it at the time. But Trump is the bodyguard of Western civilization.”
It’s not just that Kirk is a fan of the POTUS, Trump also likes him. The Republican leader has called him a “great warrior”, who once shared a photo of himself with Melania Trump at a private New Year party in the Trump-owned resort of Mar-a-Lago in Florida. As per a glowing press release issued by Salem Media Group, Kirk is a "national speaker, political commentator, and champion of America’s conservative grassroots movement.” But NBC News did not agree with this and labeled the young man as a divisive figure on the political scene of the US. Describing Kirk, the broadcaster said he has "become one of the biggest rising stars in the Republican Party". It added that the "ardent Trump supporter... has often amplified some of the president’s debunked conspiracy theories, such as those about the coronavirus.”
The evangelical Christian has recently been signed by Salem Radio Network to host a daily three-hour talk radio program from October 5. “I grew up listening to conservative talk radio, so I’m excited to bring a new generation’s voice to the medium and I'm thrilled to work with SRN to do that. It’s time to work. The country is in trouble and we have to save it,” Kirk said of the agreement.
What is Turning Point?
In 2012, Turning Point, a Phoenix-based non-profit that hires college-going people to support conservative causes, was founded by an 18-year-old Kirk in his parents’ garage in the suburbs of Chicago. The eight-year-old organization currently has a presence in over 2,000 campuses while directly engaging more than 250,000 youngsters yearly. Turning Point also has a staff presence of more than 450 full-time and part-time spread all over the country. “It is not that young people are opposed to conservative ideas. It’s just that they are not exposed to them in the first place,” Kirk said of his organization in 2018.
Why has he been blocked?
According to The Sun, the founder of Turning Point was banned temporarily by Twitter because of “violating rules against posting misleading information about voting.” Kirk told Fox News that because of the ban, he was “kind of in a hostage situation with Twitter.” “I do not have access to my Twitter account because I tweeted a widely reported story,” he added.
Twitter took the stand against Kirk after he tweeted a story about mail-in ballots in Pennsylvania, where he wrongly mentioned that people had requested several ballots. He tweeted, "Pennsylvania has just rejected 372,000 mail-in ballots. One voter was said to have submitted 11 duplicate ballots. Pennsylvania might be the key to winning the White House. What's going on?" The action was taken by the microblogging site days after Facebook took down 276 accounts that used fake profiles to pose as right-leaning US citizens to comment on news articles, mostly in favor of Trump. In addition, a digital communications company based in Arizona was also banned by Mark Zuckerberg’s company since reportedly it was behind those fake accounts.