GOP Senators Subpoena Twitter, Facebook CEOs Over Biased Censorship

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey testifies before the Senate Intelligence Committee hearing on 'Foreign Influence Operations and Their Use of Social Media Platforms' on Capitol Hill, Wednesday, Sept. 5, 2018, in Washington. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana)

 

It looks like Senate Republicans might finally be stepping up to the plate when it comes to holding social media companies like Twitter and Facebook accountable for their apparent bias against conservatives. On Thursday, the Senate Judiciary Committee voted to compel the CEOs of the two companies to testify about their censorious practices. 

With Democrats choosing to boycott the hearing, the GOP-controlled committee voted to subpoena Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg and Twitter’s Jack Dorsey if they did not agree to appear voluntarily. The lawmakers wish to hear from the two CEOs about “the suppression and/or censorship of two news articles from the New York Post,” according to the document. They are also asking for information regarding the two platforms’ policies around moderating content “that may interfere” with federal elections.

Both social media companies suppressed the dissemination of a story published by the New York Post, which provided information regarding a hard drive that belonged to Hunter Biden, son of former Vice President Joe Biden, who is currently running for president. The story discussed emails found on the hard drive that showed a potential link between the Biden family and shady business deals involving the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). It also showed evidence that the younger Biden had been engaging in sexually inappropriate behavior with underage girls. 

While Joe Biden and his close friends and allies in the corporate press have tried to spin the revelation as Russian disinformation, the Directors of National Intelligence and the FBI debunked this narrative. Both Twitter and Facebook claim that they scuttled the story because it contains “misinformation” and “hacked materials.” Yet, neither have backed up their claim. 

This situation was especially infuriating for conservatives due to its blatant display of biased censorship. Neither site has been caught suppressing misinformation or hacked materials shared by anyone on the left. In fact, they don’t seem to crack down on progressives much, if at all. 

Moreover, there was no “hacked material” in the New York Post story — it was information taken directly from Hunter Biden’s hard drive. The activists at Twitter know this. But with Election Day drawing closer, the motivation behind the action is all too obvious. They want to protect Joe Biden at all costs, even if it means being clearly biased in censoring information that could politically damage the candidate. 

Will anything come of the hearing? Probably not — at least not anytime soon. But perhaps it might be part of the overall battle to hold these companies accountable for their attempts to influence the 2020 election. Even now, the Department of Justice has filed a lawsuit against search engine company Google, who is seen as having undue influence over elections. 

But either way, it is clear that at some point, a reckoning will come. These companies won’t be able to exert this level of influence unchecked. 

 

Let me know what you think in the comments below!

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