Timothy J. Klausutis, the widow of former Joe Scarborough intern Lori Klausutis, has asked Twitter to take down tweets from Donald Trump. Trump has been promoting a debunked conspiracy theory alleging that Scarborough was responsible for Lori Klausutis’ death.
“Please delete those tweets,” Klausutis wrote in a letter to Jack Dorsey, the founder and CEO of Twitter. “My wife deserves better.”
The letter was first reported on in a New York Times opinion column by tech writer Kara Swisher. Swisher’s column was entitled “Twitter Must Cleanse the Trump Stain.”
“Yes, Twitter, Lori Klausutis certainly does deserve better, nearly two decades after she died in a tragic accident that has morphed into a macabre and continuing nightmare for her husband, Timothy Klausutis,” Swisher wrote.
Trump’s conspiracies violate Twitter’s terms of service. Similar tweets to Trump’s have been removed in the past. But Twitter has refused to remove Trump’s tweets.
Twitter has been accused of having a double standard, giving favorable treatment to Trump that others do not get.
Joe Scarborough is the host of Morning Joe on MSNBC, along with his wife Mika Brzezinski. Scarborough is a conservative Republican. During the 2016 election Scarborough frequently hosted Trump on his TV show. Scarborough reportedly sought a position in the Trump administration in 2017.
Since then, Scarborough has frequently criticized Trump and in response, Trump has attacked both Scarborough and Brzezinski.
Lori Klausutis Death
Lori Klausutis died in a fatal fall in July 2019. She was 28 years old. Lori Klausutis worked as an aide to Joe Scarborough, who was in the U.S. Congress representing Florida at the time.
Blood collected internally within her head at the point of impact with the desk.
Lori Klausutis passed out and hit her head on a desk. The medical examiner later found that she had a cardiac arrhythmia that rendered her unconscious.
Despite the column and letter, Trump promoted the conspiracy theory in tweets posted on May 26.
“The opening of a Cold Case against Psycho Joe Scarborough was not a Donald Trump original thought, this has been going on for years, long before I joined the chorus,” Trump wrote. “So many unanswered & obvious questions, but I won’t bring them up now! Law enforcement eventually will?”
Twitter has said that it will not remove Trump’s offensive tweets.
“Despite plea to @jack from Lori Klausutis’ widow, Twitter says this morning it will NOT be removing Trump’s tweets that insinuate @JoeNBC was responsible for Klausutis’ death,” noted reporter Donie O’Sullivan.
Twitter statement: ““We are deeply sorry about the pain these statements, and the attention they are drawing, are causing the family. We’ve been working to expand existing product features and policies so we can more effectively address things like this going forward, and we hope to have those changes in place shortly.”
Criticism of Trump
Trump has been frequently criticized for promoting the Klausutis conspiracy.
“Completely unfounded conspiracy. Just stop. Stop spreading it, stop creating paranoia. It will destroy us,” wrote Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL)
“The collateral damage is the family of Lori Klausutis, who had to endure her sudden loss and now watch helplessly as the president pushes a deception about her death for his own petty purposes,” noted the right-wing National Review.
The Lori Klausutis conspiracy has been debunked by experts and journalists.
“An autopsy revealed that Klausutis had an undiagnosed heart condition and a coroner concluded she passed out and hit her head as she fell. The coroner said the head injury caused the death, but she wasn’t struck by another person,” the Associated Press reported in 2017.