Ron DeSantis: Apple nuking Twitter from App the Store would “merit a response from the United States Congress”
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis warned the world’s largest company, Apple, that booting Twitter from its App Store would warrant a congressional response.
DeSantis made the comments when responding to Twitter owner Elon Musk’s claims that Apple had threatened to withhold Twitter from its App Store and wouldn’t tell Twitter why it had been put on hold.
The Florida Governor noted that Elon Musk had recently been opening Twitter up to allow more free speech and restoring accounts.
“If Apple responds to that by nuking them from…the App Store…I think that that would be a huge, huge mistake and it would be a really raw exercise of monopolistic power that I think would merit a response…from the United States Congress,” DeSantis said.
DeSantis also referenced Apple’s censorship in China by telling the tech giant: “Don’t be a vassal of the CCP [Chinese Communist Party] on one hand and then use your corporate power in the United States on the other to suffocate Americans and try to suppress their right to express themselves.”
During a separate appearance on Fox News’s Tucker Carlson Tonight, DeSantis said that Congress should “look at antitrust with these massive companies because they are exercising massive amounts of power over our society.”
Apple’s App Store is one of the internet’s most powerful gatekeepers. Unlike on Android phones, where apps can be sideloaded, the only way to download apps on an iPhone without jailbreaking the device is to go through the App Store. The vast majority of users don’t jailbreak their devices so if Apple removed Twitter from the App Store, it would be inaccessible to more than 99% of the one billion active iPhone users.
Additionally, Apple booting Twitter from the App Store would hobble Musk’s plans to increase Twitter’s subscription revenue via the premium subscription service Twitter Blue. Musk was planning to launch Twitter Blue on iPhone and use the App Store’s in-app payments system.
While Apple is in the spotlight because of the recent protests in China, the tech giant’s recent decision to turn off some AirDrop features (that protestors in China were using to break through the CCP’s mass digital censorship system and send uncensored messages) is just one of the many censorship decisions Apple has made to appease the CCP.