Stripe cuts payments for Trump campaign after Capitol attack

11 Jan 2021329 Views

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The payments giant is the latest company to distance itself from the US president after last week’s Capitol mob attack.

Stripe has cut ties with Donald Trump and will no longer process payments for the US president’s campaign website.

The move by the fintech giant, founded by Irish brothers Patrick and John Collison, joins a chorus of tech companies booting Trump from its services. This includes Twitter, which permanently suspended the @realDonaldTrump account on Friday (9 January).

According to a person familiar with Stripe’s decision, the move was attributed to violations of its policies, including encouraging violence. The news was first reported by The Wall Street Journal on Sunday night (10 January). Stripe declined to comment.

Stripe’s policies restrict businesses from using its services to accept payments related to activity that “engages in, encourages, promotes or celebrates unlawful violence or physical harm to persons or property”.

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Trump’s campaign had been using Stripe to receive payments and had paid $1.8m to the fintech company during the 2020 election for its services, according to Federal Election Commission records. The president and his team raised more than $200m after election day as part of efforts to challenge the results of the vote that saw Joe Biden elected.

The president’s belligerence over the election outcome came to a head last week when supporters stormed the US Capitol in a bid to stop the certification of the results. Five people died as a result of the violence, which has fuelled calls for impeachment.

In the immediate aftermath of the incident, tech companies took small steps to address Trump’s rhetoric online. Twitter blocked some of his tweets and Facebook suspended his account for the remainder of his term in office.

However, Twitter has since ramped up its actions by permanently suspending the president from its platform. Several social media sites followed suit with restrictions over the weekend, including TikTok, Snapchat, Spotify and Pinterest.

PayPal and Shopify also blocked financial transactions linked to organisations and online stores involved in organising last Wednesday’s attack.

Jonathan Keane is a freelance business and technology journalist based in Dublin

editorial@siliconrepublic.com