Facebook pauses some political spending after Capitol riot

Facebook wants to help register 4 million voters this year with new ‘Voting Information Center’

Facebook announced Monday that it would pause its contributions to political action committees after last week’s deadly attack on the US Capitol, as first reported by Axios.

“Following last week’s awful violence in DC, we are pausing all of our PAC contributions for at least the current quarter, while we review our policies,” Facebook spokesperson Danial Robert told The Verge in a statement Monday.

Facebook’s political spending freeze will last at least through the first quarter of 2021. This freeze only affects PAC contributions, not all of Facebook’s political spending.

“We are pausing all of our PAC contributions for at least the current quarter.”

The social media company is joining a group of other private companies halting political contributions, including JPMorgan Chase, Citigroup, and Goldman Sachs. Microsoft also announced Monday that it would pause its political spending “until after it assesses the implications of last week’s events,” according to Axios.

Microsoft did not immediately respond to requests for comment from The Verge.

The political spending freezes follow last Wednesday’s deadly pro-Trump riot at the Capitol. Days after, social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter banned high-profile QAnon accounts belonging to individuals like Michael Flynn and Sidney Powell. Over the weekend, both Facebook and Twitter permanently banned President Donald Trump for violating their rules and encouraging further violence.

Twitter officially closed its PAC in November. “In line with our belief that political influence should be earned, not bought, Twitter will officially close its Political Action Committee; #PAC. #PAC has not made donations to candidates since 2018 and is donating the remaining funds to support non-partisan voter registration activities,” a Twitter spokesperson said in a statement at the time.

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