On MSNBC, Media Matters' Angelo Carusone explains how Facebook is allowing Donald Trump to evade its ban

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Citation From the October 10, 2021, edition of MSNBC's Yasmin Vossoughian Reports

YASMIN VOSSOUGHIAN (ANCHOR):  Angelo, let's get into this, because it is pretty troubling stuff, to say the least. Wanting to break down some of the findings from Media Matters overall. Let's throw that up on the screen as we talk about this. Trump's PAC creating more than 1,600 ads, from Media Matters' investigation calculations. How many people is that actually reaching? 

ANGELO CARUSONE (PRESIDENT, MEDIA MATTERS FOR AMERICA): Millions. Millions. When we actually look at the number of individuals that will engage with — 


CARUSONE: Millions. Well into the millions. Easily 2.3 million, and that's a really low number. You'd probably have significantly more than that. And that — just keep in mind that that period is only since August 12. The previous study that we looked at was over $300,000 worth of advertisements, again, reaching several more million people. And that was between June and August. But the thing that I think is troubling in terms of the trend — that the ads are actually getting more explicit in their attacks on the election, not less. 

VOSSOUGHIAN: So, you talk about this 2.3 million number. You got at least eight Facebook accounts run by the PAC. One page we found has more than 2.3 million followers, as you mentioned.

CARUSONE: That's right.

VOSSOUGHIAN: Trump was suspended from Facebook, right? 


VOSSOUGHIAN: He was suspended from Facebook after January 6, after the insurrection. 


VOSSOUGHIAN: But still, his PACS are able to publish these pages and send out misinformation to folks. How does that line up?

CARUSONE: I mean, it doesn't line up at all and it shouldn't. I mean, in some ways — you know, if you do this — if you are an individual and you got suspended or had your account taken down and then you try to do the exact same thing, you would be banned and all the entities that you tried to run by proxy would be banned. They would call it ban evasion. Any platform would do that, including Facebook. In this case, it almost feels like they're making a pretty explicit carve out.

And the part that I can't figure out, especially when you look at the substance of the ads — I mean we're talking of these ads — of these 1,600, there were 73 of them that said that Trump was still the president. A hundred and twenty-three of these ads explicitly called into question the results of the election. They said it was tainted, that it was not a legitimate election. And in some cases Facebook even took down a few of the ads, leaving up copies of them. So they recognized that there was a threat after they were called out, modestly enforced their rules a little bit, but the underlying issue still remains that Trump is essentially ban evading and Facebook is doing nothing about it.