President Donald Trump said Friday that news stories about Russian-linked political ad spending on Facebook is a part of the “Russia hoax.”
“The Russia hoax continues, now it’s ads on Facebook,” Trump tweeted. “What about the totally biased and dishonest Media coverage in favor of Crooked Hillary?”
An analysis released by Facebook in early September revealed that accounts tied to the Kremlin spent about $150,000 on political ads on the social media network targeting American voters in the 2016 presidential election. It was been reported that these ad buys are of interest both to special counsel Robert Mueller and to congressional committees inquiring about alleged Russian election interference.
James Freeman, assistant editor for the Wall Street Journal’s editorial page, noted Thursday that it would be highly unlikely that these ads would swing the election.
“So the spending on fake Russian political ads identified by Facebook amounted to around 1/7,000th of what Mrs. Clinton spent on advertising,” Freeman wrote, citing data from Campaign & Elections magazine. “And of course these fake ad buys were not material in the context of Facebook’s total advertising revenues, which amounted to nearly $27 billion last year.”
He added, “If $150,000 amounts to the entire iceberg, and it still managed to sink the S.S. Clinton, marketing majors will be studying these ads for years to come.”