House Judiciary Committee Republicans on Thursday announced the launch of an investigation into Facebook and Twitter over their suppression before the 2020 presidential election of New York Post reporting on Hunter Biden’s laptop that contained emails exposing questionable business deals with foreigners that would benefit the Biden family.
“Big Tech, Big Democrat Party, and Big Media all colluded to keep critical information from the American people in the run-up to the most important election we have, the presidential election, so we’re launching an investigation,” said Ranking Member Jim Jordan (R-OH) Thursday on Fox Business.
— Rep. Jim Jordan (@Jim_Jordan) March 31, 2022
In light of the establishment media’s recent admission that the emails are authentic, Judiciary Republicans sent letters to Facebook’s founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal. Judiciary Republicans requested they produce all documents and communications beginning October 1, 2020, through the present, on efforts to suppress the dissemination of the Post‘s reporting, as well as efforts to fact-check the reporting.
They also requested all documents and communications in that time frame between or among any employee or contractor of Facebook and any individual affiliated with the Biden campaign or the Democrat National Committee, anyone from another social media company, or anyone from a media organization referring or relating to Facebook’s decision to reduce the dissemination of the reporting.
They also requested all documents and communications in that time frame referring or relating to Facebook’s decision to report or not report its actions to the Federal Election Commission “as an in-kind contribution to the Biden campaign.”
Additionally they asked which employees made the decision to reduce the dissemination of the New York Post reporting on its platform, and asked for an explanation of how suppressing the reporting is “not a publisher function” for the purposes of section 230 of the Communications Decency Act.
In a letter to Zuckerberg, they wrote:
Although the Post article concerned a topic of importance to many voters in the run-up to the election, Facebook still censored it. Soon after the Post published its article, Facebook’s Policy Communications Director, a former staffer for Democrat elected officials, announced that Facebook was ‘reducing its distribution on our platform.’ Facebook presumably did this because ”it s[aw] ‘signals’” that the Post story was ‘false.’ As far as we know, Facebook has never identified or explained these ‘signals.’ Instead, Facebook announced that the article would be ‘eligible to be fact checked by [the company’s] third-party fact checking partners’; however, Facebook has never revealed the results of this fact-check, or even whether it occurred.
In a similar letter to Agrawal, they wrote:
Although the Post article concerned a topic of importance to many voters in the run-up to the election, Twitter still censored it. Twitter locked the Post’s account, blocked users from sharing the link to the article, and even labeled the material ‘unsafe’ for users. Twitter also censored the official House Judiciary Committee website, where we reposted the article so the public could access it without Twitter’s interference. Although Twitter’s former CEO admitted that Twitter’s censorship actions were ‘wrong,’ Twitter continues to censor political speech in a manner that suppresses conservative voices.
The lawmakers wrote to both companies that they “knowingly and deliberately used its platform to control election-related information accessible to the American people shortly before the 2020 election,” and “did so to the primary benefit of then-[former] Vice President Biden.”
Their actions “helped shield Vice President Biden from increased scrutiny about the impropriety detailed in the Post article,” they wrote. Their “actions also gave rise to other news outlets, tech platforms, and even Biden himself dismissing the Post story as disinformation or untrue—when, in fact, it had never been rebutted,” they added.
“This irresponsible conduct demands a thorough investigation so that we may understand how Big Tech wields its enormous power over the free flow of information to the detriment of free and fair elections,” they said.
The lawmakers asked for the documents and information no later than April 14, 2022.