After yesterday’s fiasco about Twitter censoring stories regarding Hunter and Joe Biden, Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham with members Ted Cruz and Josh Hawley said Thursday, they plan to issue a subpoena to Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey for immediate and emergency testimony.
Senators Josh Hawley (R-MO), Lindsey Graham (R-SC), and Ted Cruz (R-TX)
"This is election interference and we are 19 days out from an election. It has no precedence in American democracy. The Senate Judiciary Committee wants to know what the hell is going on.” Ted Cruz said. He pointed out that he did not know whether the story was true, but the point is that Twitter deliberately blocked out news that appears to hurt Joe Biden. They then froze out the White House Press Office and others who referenced it.
The Committee will be drafting a subpoena, then vote to issue it on Tuesday requiring Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey to testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee next Friday, October 23rd.
Cruz continued that Dorsey must “come before this Committee and the American people and explain why Twitter is abusing their corporate power to silence the press and cover-up allegations of corruption. Twitter and Facebook and big tech billionaires don't get to censor political speech and actively interfere in the election. That's what they're doing right now."
Yesterday’s controversy involved The New York Post publishing a story detailing Hunter Biden introducing Joe Biden to a board member of Ukrainian company Burisma. This is in contrast to the Vice-President's continual statements that he never discussed his son’s incredibly lucrative business relationships with companies in Ukraine and China. Business dealings that took place when the Vice-President was interacting with those countries on behalf of the government.
Dealing with online censorship is not a new issue for the Trump administration. In 2018, President Trump criticized Google for skewing search results whereby they return negative news about conservative politicians. He worried that the big tech platforms - Twitter, Facebook, and Google – would be able to suppress conservative viewpoints and to deliberately shape political information accessible to American voters.
Last week, the President’s Special Envoy for Serbia and Kosovo Peace Negotiations Richard Grenell was suspended from Twitter for posting photos of mail-in ballots that were sent to dead people. The ballots had come to Ric from his friend, Tom Thompson, who said that both of his now passed away parents received ballots to vote in the upcoming presidential election. Thompson gave photos of the ballots to Ric, who then shared them on Twitter, resulting in his account being suspended until he removed them.
An Executive Order “Preventing Online Censorship” was signed by President Trump on May 28th this year. Critics at NBC news said it was just a “response to Twitter decision to label the President’s tweets as misleading when he tweeted about initiatives to use mail-in-ballots for the upcoming national election." Unlike legislation from Congress, the Executive Order cannot tackle the issue head-on, it only serves to put a spotlight on the handful of huge tech companies controlling, and in some cases placing a chokehold on, America’s information and viewpoints. About their having the ability to skew the news and impact what people do and do not see.