Conservative lawmakers take offensive on Twitter, Facebook censorship
Twitter marked a tweet from the Republican House Judiciary Committee as “suspicious” because it contained a link to a New York Post story that the liberal media is desperate to bury before the November presidential election.
The New York Post story from yesterday details emails from Hunter Biden that sought to use us father, Joe Biden, who was then serving as Vice President of the United States, as leverage for his business deals with foreign companies.
Previously Twitter has either locked or suspended accounts that have spread the story including the account of the New York Post and White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany.
“Twitter has blocked users from tweeting the link to the @nypost‘s story on Hunter Biden. So we put it on our website for you to read and share. Click, share, and RT!” says a tweet from the House Committee on the Judiciary.
Twitter responded several minutes later by warning Twitter users the link might contain harmful or malicious material in a notice that has since been removed.
Conservatives reacted furiously to the censorship, which first began as an announcement from Facebook’s Director of Communications, Andy Stone, that Facebook would reduce traffic for the story. Stone previously worked for Democrat Sen. Diane Feinstein (CA) and the Democrat Congressional Campaign Committee.
Twitter sought to calm matters by saying that while the communication as to why they were censoring the tweets from the New York Post story was spotty, Twitter had good reason.
“Our communication around our actions on the @nypost article was not great. And blocking URL sharing via tweet or DM with zero context as to why we’re blocking: unacceptable,” tweeted Twitter’s Jack Dorsey.
But Republican lawmakers weren’t mollified by the answer and vowed to make Big Tech companies like Facebook and Twitter answer questions under oath.
“@Twitter @jack this is not nearly good enough. In fact, it’s a joke. It’s downright insulting. I will ask you – and @Facebook – to give an explanation UNDER OATH to the Senate subcommittee I chair. These are potential violations of election law, and that’s a crime,” said Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO). Hawley serves on the Senate Judiciary Committee.
Conservatives hit back on what they see as double standard that punishes only right-leaning views while declaring open season on American values.
“So, @Twitter allows the Ayatollah of Iran to make death threats against the U.S. and #Israel but censors a news article from @nypost. Seems backwards to me. Once again, Twitter is showing it can’t put aside its political bias, especially when policing free speech,” said Florida Republican Rep. Michael Waltz.
More ominously for the Big Tech companies, Colorado Republican Ken Buck, a member of the House Judiciary Committee, penned a letter to the Department of Justice that urged the immunity protection of the internet companies to be scuttled because of their actions.
“Platforms are granted broad immunity from prosecution under Section 230 in order to allow users to exercise their First Amendment right to free speech with limited moderation of only the most egregious and illegal communications,” Buck said in the letter. “Twitter and Facebook’s editorial decisions to block the New York Post’s story, while allowing the President to Iran to issue death threats against United States service members, do not meet the narrow content moderation protections granted to platforms under Section 230.”
Buck and other House members have been investigating free-speech issues involving Big Tech companies including censorship, with promises to crack down on abuses by the social media giants.
So far, however, Big Tech companies seem immune to the threat.
A New York Post story today that detailed more Hunter Biden emails has been subject to similar restrictions.
“Here we go. #BigTech censorship Round Two,” tweeted Hawley.
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