Twitter banned notorious Trump supporter Jacob Wohl from its platform on Tuesday, alleging that Wohl broke the site’s rules against creating fake accounts.
Wohl’s ban came hours after he boasted in a USA Today interview about his plans to create fake accounts on Twitter and Facebook, which he said would be used to manipulate the 2020 election.
“The account was suspended for multiple violations of the Twitter Rules, specifically creating and operating fake accounts,” a Twitter spokesperson told The Daily Beast.
Wohl had already created several fake accounts before he was banned, according to a source familiar with Wohl’s activities on Twitter. Wohl told USA Today that he intended to use the accounts to help Trump in the 2020 election, pushing Democratic primary voters to back weaker candidates who would be easier for Trump to defeat in the general election.
Wohl didn’t respond to requests for comment. His Facebook and Instagram accounts are still online.
In a video posted after his ban, Wohl claimed that being kicked off Twitter was actually good news for him.
“This could not have happened at a better time,” Wohl said. “Jacob Wohl is the number-one trending topic on Twitter right now.”
Wohl said he would still attempt to use fake social media accounts to change votes in 2020.
“It’s 100 percent legal, and now I’m going to have a lot more time to do it,” Wohl said in the video.
Wohl’s fake accounts included @JWohlTreason, @DrakeHomes612, @Women_4_Schultz, and @Ericshanzner, according to a source familiar with Wohl’s Twitter activity.
Wohl confirmed to NBC News that he ran @Women_4_Schultz, a Twitter account posing as a group of women supporting a possible independent presidential bid by Starbucks founder Howard Schultz. The account urged Schultz to run for president and attacked Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Kamala Harris (CA).
“I guess you’re not allowed to make an account that expresses Howard Schultz’s positions on women’s issues,” Wohl said in his video.
The tweets for the @Ericshanzner account have been deleted. But based on other Twitter users’ interactions with it, the account appears to have been used to promote Wohl’s trip with other right-wing personalities to Minneapolis to “investigate” Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN.). Wohl played up the danger he faced in the city in broadcasts to his fans, wearing a bulletproof vest and claiming he had to be driven around in an armored car.
Twitter and other platforms have been under congressional pressure to crack down on election manipulation after Russian social media interference in the 2016 election. Wohl’s scheme to divide and weaken the Democratic field even recalls part of the Russian interference effort, which involved boosting candidates on the left opposed to Hillary Clinton.
Wohl, 21, had amassed more than 180,000 followers on Twitter before his ban, thanks in large part to his frequent, enthusiastic replies to Donald Trump’s tweets.
The Twitter ban marks the latest setback for Wohl, who originally made his name in finance, becoming the youngest person to ever be banned from futures trading.
In 2018, Wohl attempted to smear Special Counsel Robert Mueller by attempting to recruit a woman to accuse Mueller of sexual assault. Wohl even created a fake investigative firm, “Surefire Intelligence,” which purported to be staffed by experienced intelligence operatives. The firm’s staff turned out to be only Wohl himself, though, after reporters discovered that Wohl was using pictures of famous actors and models to stand in for his nonexistent employees. The firm’s image further collapsed after a reporter realized that one of Surefire’s phone numbers went to Wohl’s mother’s voicemail.
Wohl’s scheme against Mueller is now under FBI investigation. The scene turned comical after Wohl’s accuser failed to show up for a disastrous press conference, with one heckler asking Wohl and his ally, Washington lobbyist Jack Burkman, whether they were prepared to go to prison.
In the USA Today story published Tuesday, the woman claims that Wohl tricked her and lied about the entire incident.
Wohl’s signature move on Twitter—claiming that he had overheard liberals praising Trump at a “hipster coffee shop” in a series of obviously fake anecdotes—became a popular meme. Wohl often tweeted that he was eavesdropping on liberals who, despite their politics, had to admit that Trump was doing a good job and would win reelection.
"I was in a hipster coffee shop (safe space) here in LA and the libs were whispering to each other how @RealDonaldTrump is doing great for the economy, got them a raise at work and will definitely be re-elected in 2020," Wohl tweeted in January 2018.
In another scheme last year, Wohl tried to launch a news site he claimed would offer “independent journalism.” The site’s reporters, Wohl claimed, would adhere to a rigorous code of ethics, which he posted on the site. That code of ethics was then discovered to have been plagiarized from ProPublica, the nonprofit news organization.