▶ Watch Video: Elon Musk reaches deal to buy Twitter for $44 billion

Washington — Former President Donald Trump said he will not get back on Twitter, even if his account is reinstated by Elon Musk, who is set to acquire the company for $44 billion.

Trump told Fox News that he would instead maintain a presence on Truth Social, the social media platform launched earlier this year by a new media firm he founded, and expects to begin using the site over the next seven days. Truth Social is one of the brands under the Trump Media and Technology Group, though the platform’s popularity has waned in the weeks after its February launch.

“I hope Elon buys Twitter because he’ll make improvements to it and he is a good man, but I am going to be staying on Truth,” the former president told Fox News.

Trump claimed the number of users on Truth Social is growing, and the response on the platform is “much better than being on Twitter.

“The bottom line is, no, I am not going back to Twitter,” he said, adding Truth Social is a platform for his voice and his supporters.

Trump was a prolific user of Twitter across his presidency, using his account to announce personnel and policy changes, and go after his critics. But the company banned him from the platform in the wake of the January 6 assault on the U.S. Capitol. Twitter said that after reviewing Trump’s tweets and the context surrounding them, it decided to permanently suspend his account “due to the risk of further incitement of violence.”

The president used his Twitter account in the weeks between the 2020 presidential election and the January 6 insurrection to encourage his supporters to gather in Washington in protest of the election, which he falsely claimed was rigged against him.

He and other Republicans have accused sites like Twitter and Facebook of censoring conservative voices and have called for the repeal of a 1996 law that shields social media companies from being held liable for content posted by their users.

Twitter announced Monday that it reached an agreement with Musk, the CEO of Tesla and SpaceX, to buy the company. The deal values the company at roughly $44 billion. Once the transaction is completed, Twitter will become privately held.

“Free speech is the bedrock of a functioning democracy, and Twitter is the digital town square where matters vital to the future of humanity are debated,” Musk, who has 85 million followers, said in a statement.

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