Former Microsoft CEO Bill Gates has suggested that former American President Donald Trump should probably be allowed back on social media, notwithstanding what he said were his “corrosive” theories about fraud in the 2020 election.
“I think at some point he probably will be allowed back on and probably should be allowed back on,” Gates said, speaking to CNBC on Thursday.
“It’s weird when you’re saying that the election was stolen without any facts there and how corrosive that is, but I’ll bet they’ll find a way to let him back on. His stuff may be labelled as false in a lot of cases. You know in a way people’s interest in what he says may go down quite a bit. That’ll be interesting to watch,” the tech billionaire added.
Gates attacked Trump repeatedly during his presidency, with his criticisms focused mostly on viruses and vaccinations. Even before the coronavirus, Gates said that he told Trump at a meeting in 2018 not to set up a commission on possible ill effects of vaccines, calling the idea a “dead end” and a “bad thing”.
Over the past year, the billionaire attacked the former president over his administration’s “slow” and “chaotic” response to the pandemic, and slammed him for cutting US funding to the World Health Organization, with the funding halt leaving the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation as the WHO’s largest single donor (and ethical concerns associated with that fact).
The Microsoft co-founder retired from day-to-day operations at the company in 2008, and stepped down from its board in 2020. He has gone on to promote a range of philanthropic initiatives mostly related to health. His foundation has invested heavily in the development of most major vaccines developed in Western countries, including jabs by Moderna, AstraZeneca, Johnson & Johnson, and others. The wealth of the foundation and Gates’ personal wealth have gone up considerably amid the pandemic due to fortuitous investments.