On Thursday, a subcommittee on the House Judiciary Committee dealing with the so-called weaponization of the federal government held a hearing focusing on ostensible suppression on social media of conservative voices — and in opening remarks at the proceedings, the panel’s top Democrat rebuked this whole idea.
While there may be messages showing communications between federal government personnel and social media companies’ staff, it’s unclear there’s any documentation of the government extra-judicially forcing these companies to take silencing action against opposing figures generally. The Republicans are insisting on some kind of conspiracy without clear and substantively supporting evidence.
“In preparation for the 2024 presidential election, Republicans on this committee want to entrench their theory of social media censorship — their unfounded accusation that social media companies are colluding with the government to censor conservative voices,” Stacey Plaskett said. “There’s no evidence of this collusion, and in fact, this committee has heard closed-door testimony from 29 witnesses who’ve said, on the record, government as well as social media individuals, that the alleged collusion and supposed censorship claimed by the committee Republicans has not taken place.”
Democrats have before characterized key investigative efforts undertaken by Republicans in this Congress as an exercise in merely electoral politics. Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) leads both the overall Judiciary panel and this particular subcommittee, and he has targeted several prosecutors who’ve somehow gone after Trump, demanding insider information related to their probes. He also recently sought information from the local attorney general in D.C. on an investigation that law enforcement figure has been conducting related to financial transfers around conservative judicial activists — and in all these areas, Jordan has largely fallen short, failing to secure much in substantive evidence terms.
Meanwhile, Plaskett also argued in the hearing that an actual area of concern in terms of looming governmental weaponization was Donald Trump, noting among other developments that he’s expressed ambitions of restarting the Muslim-targeting travel bans imposed during his earlier tenure. Watch the hearing below: