About 150,000 Americans have died due to the Coronavirus, but this Wednesday, what did the House Judiciary Committee’s top Republican, Ohio’s Jim Jordan, seem highly concerned about? At a Wednesday hearing featuring prominent tech company CEOs as witnesses, Jordan wound himself up into a nonsensical rage over an imaginary scheme in which tech companies are supposedly censoring and suppressing conservatives. That alleged censorship is not happening. It’s difficult to overstate the wrongness of Jordan’s convictions — but he’s worked himself into a rage over this imaginary mistreatment of conservatives anyway. At the Wednesday hearing, as Jordan eventually tried to talk over hearing chair Rep. David Cicilline (D-R.I.), someone shouted at him to put his mask back on.
Rep. Steube now asking the Google CEO tech support questions on behalf of his dad (not a joke)
— rat king (@MikeIsaac) July 29, 2020
Towards the beginning of his rant, Jordan insisted:
‘I’ll just cut to the chase. Big tech’s out to get conservatives. That’s not a suspicion. That’s not a hunch. That’s a fact!’
No, it is not a fact — but Jordan had “evidence” for his claims anyway.
These Republicans are just beyond parody pic.twitter.com/VW05XAMQbZ
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) July 29, 2020
He rattled off a number of supposed instances of censorship of conservatives, although some if not all of the examples could seemingly be chalked up to simple technical errors, although Jordan certainly seems to prefer to propagate the never-ending conservative martyr complex. He quickly got to a particularly bizarre example, claiming that the simple decision by Google and YouTube to favor material that’s in line with World Health Organization guidelines represents some kind of anti-conservative bias. It doesn’t. Science is not some kind of anti-conservative conspiracy.
This is actually an ongoing problem in Congress. They often have no clue about the tech they try to regulate. Congress used to have an office whose role was to educate members on tech but the Republicans disbanded it years ago. Clearly, it needs to come back! https://t.co/LkrdLkJTgl
— Nomadic Matt (@nomadicmatt) July 29, 2020
Nevertheless, Jordan ranted:
‘[On] April 19, 2020, Google and YouTube announce a policy censoring the content that conflicts with the recommendations of the World Health Organization. Now think about that — the World Health Organization: the organization that lied to us, the organization that shilled for China — and if you contradict something they say — they can say whatever they want, they can lie for China, they can shill for China: you say something against them, you get censored.’
Note: Jordan did not even attempt to produce a single piece of evidence that the World Health Organization has ever or would ever “lie for China.” Perhaps he’s simply hoping that the rapid-fire nature of his volley of nonsense would distract observers from looking just a little deeper.
Eventually, Jordan added:
‘What’s not great is censoring people, censoring conservatives, and trying to impact elections, and if it doesn’t end — there has to be consequences. There have to be consequences. That’s what I’m concerned about and I think what so many Americans are concerned about.’
Actually, “so many” Americans are concerned about how they’re going to make rent this month. There’s a looming national crisis as eviction moratoriums begin to expire and pandemic-connected financial assistance begins to dry up. Check out Jordan’s ridiculous ranting below:
Subsequently, Jordan tried to get another committee member called to the hearing via unanimous consent. A member objected and thereby blocked his unanimous consent request, but Jordan kept rambling anyway, and Cicilline had to repeatedly remind him of the simple procedural rules that he was refusing to follow. Eventually, someone — it’s not immediately clear — called out for Jordan to put his mask on.
Wow… Gohmert’s own staff is now calling him out. https://t.co/Th4nSqtDfP
— Charlotte Clymer 🏳️🌈 (@cmclymer) July 29, 2020