Congressman Devin Nunes resigns to lead new Trump media company
House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes, R-Calif., speaks to reporters on Capitol Hill in Washington, Friday, March 24, 2017. Nunes said Friday that Paul Manafort, the former campaign chairman for President Donald Trump, had volunteered to be interviewed by the committee. members. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite) Devin Nunes
Devin Nunes formally resigned from Congress on Saturday, stepping down from his elected position representing California’s 22nd congressional district to become the CEO of former President Donald Trump’s new media company.
Nunes, 48, was first elected to the House of Representatives in 2002 and previously worked at the US Department of Agriculture.
In a statement released by the Trump Media & Technology Group last month, Nunes confirmed his intention to take on a new role there, saying, “Now is the time to reopen the internet and allow the free flow of ideas and expression without censorship.”
Related video: Devin Nunes sued Twitter in 2019 for defamation and negligence
“The United States of America has made the dream of the Internet a reality and it will be an American company that will restore the dream,” the statement continued. “I am humbled and honored that President Trump has asked me to lead the world-class mission and team that will deliver on this promise.”
RELATED: Rep. Devin Nunes retires from Congress to become CEO of Trump Media Group
Trump’s new eponymous company was announced in October and describes itself as a “planned rival to the liberal media consortium.” [to] fight back against Silicon Valley’s “Big Tech” companies, which have used their one-sided power to silence opposing voices in America.”
While the Trump Media & Technology Group currently lists several potential brands on its website, including “Truth Social,” it has yet to launch them. The company has also drawn attention to its connection to a separate company with which it intends to merge.
Former President Donald Trump has long suggested he might try getting involved in his own social media or news outlet. He was banned from Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and many other major platforms after his supporters stormed the US Capitol in a violent scene last January.
According to the October release, a nationwide rollout of the new media company is “expected in the first quarter of 2022.”
There is a waiting list for those hoping to get an invite to Truth Social, although Twitter users have reported having problems trying to sign up and register with the site.
RELATED: New York Attorney General subpoenas Ivanka Trump, Donald Trump Jr.: report
In his own statement released last month, Trump said Nunes, a staunch ally in Congress, would make an “excellent” CEO of the new company.
“Devin understands that we need to stop liberal media and big tech from destroying the freedoms that make America great,” Trump said. “America is ready for social TRUTH and an end to censorship and political discrimination.”
Never miss a story – subscribe to PEOPLEthe free daily newsletter of to stay up to date on the best that PEOPLE has to offer, from juicy celebrity news to gripping human interest stories.
Nunes served as chairman of the House Intelligence Committee while Republicans were in power under the Trump administration. He faced intense Democratic criticism for his handling of the investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election and sharply criticized special counsel Robert Mueller.
Nunes also served on the executive committee leading Trump’s transition team after the 2016 election, advising on national security choices.
Nunes’ departure from Congress comes ahead of the 2022 midterm elections. According to CNN, his former district had become more Democratic during the redistricting.