YouTube Suspends Rudy Giuliani Over ‘Election Integrity Policy,’ Nicotine Use

Google-owned YouTube suspended former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani’s channel for a second time, claiming that he violated the platform’s policies surrounding the election.

YouTube confirmed to news outlets that the ban isn’t permanent. Giuliani won’t be able to upload videos for two weeks.

“We removed content from the Rudy W. Giuliani channel for violating our sale of regulated goods policy, which prohibits content facilitating the use of nicotine, and our presidential election integrity policy,” a YouTube spokeswoman said in a statement to Bloomberg and other outlets.

“Additionally, in accordance with our long standing strikes system, we issued a strike against the Rudy W. Giuliani channel, which temporarily restricts uploading or live-streaming.”

The “nicotine use” portion could be in reference to Giuliani’s promotion of cigars and cigar companies during his YouTube videos.

The Epoch Times reached out to YouTube and Giuliani for comment.

Giuliani, a former prosecutor, served as former President Donald Trump’s lawyer as his team unsuccessfully challenged the results of the election in several states. Giuliani and lawyer Jenna Ellis also held hearings with several state lawmakers about election integrity.

YouTube previously suspended Giuliani’s account in January, citing his content about the 2020 election. If he is suspended again for a third time, the account will be permanently banned.

The move is certain to trigger criticism over Big Tech’s censorship of dissenting viewpoints.

YouTube drew condemnation last week when it removed a Newsmax video that included an interview with Trump.

A Google spokesperson told The Epoch Times via email: “We have clear Community Guidelines that govern what videos may stay on YouTube, and we enforce our Community Guidelines consistently, regardless of speaker and without regard to political viewpoints.”

Around the same time, the firm removed a video of an attorney testifying to the Ohio legislature and claimed it included COVID-19 misinformation. In a similar move, YouTube also removed testimony given by a lawyer for Trump during a U.S. congressional hearing.

During his Feb. 28 speech at CPAC in Florida, Trump told a crowd that Big Tech firms such as Google, Twitter, Facebook, and Amazon should be punished by states if those firms “silence conservative voices.”

“The time has come to break up Big Tech monopolies and restore fair competition,” he said, adding that Section 230—a law that is part of the Communications Decency Act of 1996—must be repealed or changed.

“All of the election integrity measures in the world will mean nothing if we don’t have free speech,” Trump said. “If Republicans can be censored for speaking the truth and calling out corruption, we will not have democracy and we will only have left-wing tyranny.”

From The Epoch Times