September 28th, 2009
05:10 PM ET
3 years ago

Secret Service says it's investigating Facebook poll on Obama

There are more than 350,000 applications on Facebook. The company says it disables any that violate its terms.
There are more than 350,000 applications on Facebook. The company says it disables any that violate its terms.

(CNN) – The social networking site Facebook on Monday pulled a third-party application that allows users to create polls after a site member built a poll asking if President Barack Obama should be killed.

The U.S. Secret Service, the agency assigned to protect the president, has launched an investigation, agency spokesman James Mackin said.

"As is usually the case, our vigilant users reported it to us first," Facebook spokesman Barry Schnitt told CNN. "The USSS (Secret Service) sent us an e-mail late this morning PDT asking us to take it down. At that point, it had already been removed and we let them know."

Schnitt said the application "was immediately suspended while the inappropriate content could be removed by the developer and until such time as the developer institutes better procedures to monitor their user-generated content."

Facebook allows third-party developers to create applications - such as polls and quizzes - which are then made available to Facebook users, who use the applications to create specific content. Users may choose to make their content available to the general population of Facebook or limit it only to their friends.

In this case, Schnitt said, the user made the poll asking whether Obama should be killed available to the general public.

The possible responses to the poll were "yes," "maybe," "if he cuts my health care" and "no."

Schnitt said the poll "appears to have been posted over the weekend."

–CNN Associate Producer Martina Stewart contributed to this report.


Filed under: Facebook • Popular Posts • President Obama
soundoff (88 Responses)
  1. Steph

    See what the right-wing hate campaign is creating? I pray for the safety of our wonderful president and his family. And...I pray for all of the people who have so much hate in their hearts.

    September 28, 2009 05:16 pm at 5:16 pm |
  2. Buffalo

    This gives a whole new meaning to the question, "How many hits?"

    Just watch: The Neanderthal who created this third party application will soon have Neocons doing fundraisers for his legal fees.

    September 28, 2009 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  3. JS

    Obvious right-wing sicko. Also... obviously somebody too stupid to understand what the health care debate is about. Bad combo...

    September 28, 2009 05:20 pm at 5:20 pm |
  4. We Won Get Over It

    I didn't see that poll but whoever set it up and those that voted should be prosecuted or something done. The violence the republicans are urging on people in this country is terrible. Not all republicans are like that but those that must be the fringe element seem to be taking over the party.

    But then you have the republican informerical channel Fox News, Drudge, Malken, Rush and GLEN BECK urging this type of violence. The listeners are being programmed to think this behavior is OK>

    I belong to Facebook and I think that the ones who set this up and voted for him to be killed should automatically be kicked off. This type of behavior should not be tolerated.

    Obama has done nothing to this country to be treated this way. I did not vote for him, but the man is doing what is bringing us out of the muck and mire the Bush administration with the help of the republican congress majority put us in. The same bunch of republicans now trying to get people to rant and rave and try to do things to him....they should be ashamed of theirselves. They are not the type of Americans this country needs.

    September 28, 2009 05:20 pm at 5:20 pm |
  5. Peter

    Face book management is full of crap! just a few months they had another scandal ! and then now?. This issue should be investigated fully and the person or group who posted it should be sent to Gitmo! May God bless and protect President Obama everyday!!. Why do some people want to see genocide in this great Nation. Any attempt to kill Obama will bring racial genocides in the entire world.

    September 28, 2009 05:20 pm at 5:20 pm |
  6. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Continue to bury your collective heads in the sand Party leaders if you want to, but realize that as leaders it is encumbent on YOU to rebuke some of the unnaceptable behaviour and language directed towards the POTUS. How long will you continue to turn a blind eye to this and tip-toe around a very serious subject that can only be effectively addressed by you? I am especially dissappointed in the lack of Democratic Leadership when it comes to addressing the safety of our President,. Absolutely incredible. And sad.

    September 28, 2009 05:23 pm at 5:23 pm |
  7. An Ex-NC-Pub

    Sick.... and frightening

    September 28, 2009 05:23 pm at 5:23 pm |
  8. willie

    If the extreme right wing bigots are this hate filled after only 9 months of having the first African American President.:God only knows what will be brewing in their evil minds after health care reform is passed. May God and the secret service protect our President and his family every day, every hour, and every minute. He is not only the POTUS, he is a father and a husband. Have you no shame face book users?

    September 28, 2009 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  9. marcus tullius c

    I can't stand the guy but the alleged calls to kill him are outrageous.

    September 28, 2009 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  10. abby0802

    This anti-Obama rhetoric is getting out of hand.

    Have we become a nation of idiots? How did this ever even get on to Facebook?

    I am disgusted, appalled, and ashamed of the behavior of those who oppose Obama.

    You can thank all those "righteous-right" people out there - Beck, Limbaugh, Palin, the "Birthers" etc. for the increased hatred and ugly rhetoric who prefer to spread lies and fear.

    The truth is shouted down.

    They have set such an ugly tone in America.

    Reminds me of what the Nazis did in the 1920s and 1930s - and look what happened there.

    God help this country if this is what we have become.

    September 28, 2009 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  11. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    The perpetrators should be prosecuted. Isn't there something in the lawbooks regarding posing a threat to the President? Prosecution of the idiot that set up this poll would be the voice in the wilderness that is being created by the Hannitys, and Becks of the world, that would unequivocally state that a line has been crossed and it will not be tolerated. I pray every day, every day for the POTUS and the First Family. When I'm feeling expecially Christian, I pray for his haters. Not often enough I'll admit.

    September 28, 2009 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  12. Jacob

    So sad. the hate and fear being spread around is truly frightening! and a really sad reflection on our country.

    September 28, 2009 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  13. Proud Vet

    Arrest the creator of the poll for treason!!!!!!!!!

    September 28, 2009 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  14. Moderate Democrat

    I love seeing these little hate filled retards so unhappy. Too bad Republicans, it's going to be like this for a LONG time to come.

    Whether you like it or not, President Obama would get elected AGAIN against ANY of your current possibilities. Facts are facts. And it makes my day to think of you morons all pissed off when you realize it.

    Get used to being unhappy, us americans intend to make all terrorists suffer, Republicans are first on our list!

    September 28, 2009 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  15. Jack

    Of course, according to commenters on this forum, this reflects all conservative thought in America. Give me a break. This is a sick person who created this, but don't take advantage of this as another attack on conservative political thought.

    September 28, 2009 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  16. Libertarian

    The Republican "leadership" needs to speak up and soon. Palin started and encouraged this type of following during the campaign. The silence from the GOP leadership was deafening then and is worse now. It's time we encourage civil debate and not stoke the simmering embers of hate. Seems that's the GOP strategy right now. But they must remember the back draft from those flames.

    Fear leads to anger, anger leads to hate, hate leads to suffering......this is the path the dark (GOP) side.

    September 28, 2009 05:33 pm at 5:33 pm |
  17. wayne

    How sad is this? No matter the affiliation. The person who created this should be treated with the harshest punishment allowed as an example of how this kind of hatred will not be tolerated; even in jest. Can we FINALLY say enough is enough regarding all the anger and hatred directed at our President?

    September 28, 2009 05:33 pm at 5:33 pm |
  18. windfall

    The right wing extremists are becoming the voice of the GOP. Will no one step up and put a stop to these wackos????

    September 28, 2009 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  19. JJ in WNY

    this sort of thing really sickens me. how much more stirring up of HATE before some right-wing (or left-wing) nut actually tries something?

    how much longer before faux news and some of the right-wing pundits get arrested for inciting violence? aren't they techincally domestic terrorists? can they be held accountable if they inspire others to commit terrible crimes???

    i'm all for free speech– but isn't inciting HATE much like crying "fire!" in a crowded theater?

    September 28, 2009 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  20. Mary

    The fact that somone created this poll on facebook is very frightening. Since the campaign, I have been very worried about President Obama's safety and the safety of his family. Many people that I know, Republicans and Democrats alike, are also worried.

    September 28, 2009 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
  21. If the insurance companies win, YOU LOSE

    I blame the Republican Party leadership for creating such a high level of fear-driven hate among the confused members of the right wing base, who are clearly coming unhinged.

    Obama 2012

    September 28, 2009 05:36 pm at 5:36 pm |
  22. Moe, NY

    The person who did this should be banned from Face Book at the very least. Hope charges are brought against this person by the Secret Service. This must be one of those Conservative right wing nut jobs that want to see our President brought to harm, and his policies fail. These people are beyond contempt.

    September 28, 2009 05:36 pm at 5:36 pm |
  23. ATL Guy

    Maybe Sarah Palin put out the poll? Last I heard she was palling around with some Chinese communists giving them a closed door speech about being from Main Street USA.

    September 28, 2009 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  24. Concerned

    These people are sick to the Core ! Mr. Obama is trying to get us out of the mess created by Bush and his cronies. It never ceases to surprise me that usually poor people are the most racist. These branless fools can be programmed to hate brainy people !

    September 28, 2009 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  25. ATL Guy

    People seem to forget that the rules that protected white Presidents for all these years still protect a black President.

    September 28, 2009 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
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