Twitter announced on Friday that US president-elect Joe Biden will receive the @POTUS Twitter account on January 20th, 2021 regardless of whether President Trump concedes before then.
A Twitter spokesperson confirmed that the tech giant is “actively preparing to support the transition of White House institutional Twitter accounts on January 20th, 2021,” which also includes @whitehouse, @VP, @FLOTUS, and a number of other official accounts. The process is being done in consultation with the National Archives and Records Administration.
Twitter also confirmed that staffers will meet with representatives from the Biden-Harris transition team in the coming months to review how the new administration plans to use its government-related accounts.
The @POTUS account has more than 32 million followers and will provide Biden with another way to communicate with the public while in office. The current tweets posted during the Trump administration will be archived, and the account will be reset to zero tweets.
Trump has thus far refused to concede the presidential race to Biden, though Biden was projected to be the victor with 306 Electoral College votes and will regardless get the @POTUS account in about two months.
The president has leaned far more heavily on his own personal account, which has nearly 89 million followers. His Twitter activity has come under heightened scrutiny after the presidential election as he uses the platform to post misleading and false information about voter fraud, much of which has been flagged as misinformation.
While Trump’s posts will face harsher scrutiny from Twitter when he leaves office and loses protections the platform grants to world leaders, he will continue to have a broad platform through his account to maintain his high perch in the country’s politics, a tool that could remain powerful should he choose to run for a second term in 2024.