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Thursday, July 18, 2024

House Judiciary Chair Subpoenas Big Tech CEOs for Censorship Records

'Your response without compulsory process has been woefully inadequate...'

(Ken Silva, Headline USAHouse Judiciary Chairman Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, announced Wednesday that he has issued subpoenas to the CEOs of five big tech firms, seeking records about how they may have colluded with the U.S. government to censor speech.

The five chief executives to receive a subpoenas are Google’s Sundar Pichai, Amazon’s Andy Jassy, Apple’s Tim Cook, Meta’s Mark Zuckerberg, and Microsoft’s Satya Nadella.

Jordan said in a press release that the subpoenas were necessary because numerous attempts to engage with the companies voluntarily since last December have been unsuccessful.

“We have asked for communications between Alphabet and the Executive Branch, internal Alphabet communications discussing communications from the Executive Branch, and Alphabet communications with third parties that may have been working with the Executive Branch, in addition to other key information,” Jordan told Pichai—a message he repeated to the other chiefs.

“Your response without compulsory process has been woefully inadequate.”

Jordan further juxtaposed the Big Tech firms’ lack response to the transparency coming from Twitter.

“Twitter recently set a benchmark for how transparent Big Tech companies can be about interactions with government over censorship. The Twitter Files have exposed how Big Tech and the federal government have worked hand in hand in ways that undermine First Amendment principles. Numerous internal documents from Twitter reflect the weaponization of the federal government’s power to censor speech online,” he said.

“It is necessary for Congress to gauge the extent to which this occurred at Alphabet as well.”

Jordan’s subpoenas follow last week’s Judiciary Committee hearing into Twitter’s role in suppressing the Hunter Biden laptop story. There, former Twitter executives were hammered about their dubious decision to deem the Biden laptop story as Russian disinformation in the leadup to the 2020 presidential election.

Judiciary Committee members such as Rep. Dan Bishop, R-N.C. have remarked that the Twitter Files are likely the tip of the iceberg when it comes to big tech-big government collusion.

In a recent interview, Bishop said Twitter is only a “peon” compared to tech giants such as Facebook and Google. Bishop said a full investigation is necessary to determine “how the people of the United States are having their choices and their destiny manipulated by a government that’s supposed to serve them.”

The Big Tech CEOs have until March 23 to respond to Jordan’s letter.

Ken Silva is a staff writer at Headline USA. Follow him at twitter.com/jd_cashless.

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