The husband of a woman who died nearly 20 years ago while working for former Rep. Joe Scarborough (R-Fla.) has asked Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey to remove tweets posted by President Trump that suggest her death was a part of a conspiracy theory involving the MSNBC “Morning Joe” host.
Timothy Klausutis, in his letter to Dorsey, which was obtained by The New York Times, told the Twitter founder that his “wife deserves better.”
“The frequency, intensity, ugliness, and promulgation of these horrifying lies ever increases on the internet,” Klausutis said. “These conspiracy theorists, including most recently the President of the United States, continue to spread their bile and misinformation on your platform disparaging the memory of my wife and our marriage.”
In response, Twitter has said that while it is sorry about the statements and the attention they are drawing, it would not be removing the tweets. It did say it was working on an effort to address similar issues that it hoped to introduce soon.
“We are deeply sorry about the pain these statements, and the attention they are drawing, are causing the family,” a Twitter spokesperson told The Hill in a statement. “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.”
Lori Klausutis died in 2001 after an abnormal heart rhythm caused her to lose consciousness and hit her head on a desk in Scarborough’s congressional office in Florida.
Her death was ruled an accident, but Trump has repeatedly tweeted about the incident to cast aspersions on Scarborough, with whom he has feuded since the end of the 2016 GOP presidential primary. Scarborough was in Washington at the time of the incident.
Twitter has struggled with managing misinformation and false claims in recent years and hasn’t made it a practice to check world leaders, even when they post misleading or false information.
Trump most recently raised the issue Tuesday morning.