Illustration by Bill Kerr / CC
Published July 21, 2021
The Tennessee Conservative [By Jason Vaughn] –
U.S. Senator Marsha Blackburn called on President Biden to release information on the extent of his administration’s work with big tech companies to censor Americans’ free speech related to COVID-19.
Blackburn states that Communist countries like Cuba censor their citizen’s free speech and the Biden Administration’s coordination with Big Tech companies to censor free speech is deeply disturbing.
“What the Biden White House is doing—namely, ordering big tech companies to ban Americans that do not regurgitate government approved messaging—is what authoritarian regimes do,” said Blackburn.
As reported by Newsweek, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said Thursday that Biden Administration officials are flagging posts for Facebook that allegedly spread “misinformation” about COVID-19 vaccines.
“We are in regular touch with these social media platforms, and those engagements typically happen through members of our senior staff, but also members of our COVID-19 team,” Psaki said.
*** Click Here to Support Conservative Journalism in Tennessee. We can’t cover topics like this without your support!***
Blackburn states that the American people deserve to know the extent of the White House’s coordination with Big Tech.
“President Biden should waive executive privilege and release the emails,” Blackburn said.
Read the full text of the letter Blackburn sent below:
Dear President Biden:
I write regarding White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki’s recent remarks about the White House’s oversight of social media posts it considers problematic or “disinformation.” Ms. Psaki noted that the White House is “in regular touch with the social media platforms” and is “flagging problematic posts” that they believe should be removed relating to COVID-19 and the COVID vaccine. Ms. Psaki also suggested that Americans who are banned from one social media platform should be banned on others.
These revelations are deeply concerning. The blatant actions by your administration to work with big tech companies to censor Americans’ free speech are shocking – and arguably a violation of the First Amendment. Communist countries such as Cuba are currently taking away their citizens’ right to use the internet to communicate; the U.S. government should be standing up to, not looking to mirror, authoritarian regimes such as these.
Please provide more information about your Administration’s efforts to “flag problematic posts” on social media platforms, including:
- What criteria are you directing social media platforms to use to flag and remove posts?
- What criteria are you directing social media platforms to use to ban users?
- In your July 15th press briefing, you stated that 12 people are responsible for “65 percent of anti-vaccine misinformation on social media platforms.” Who are those accounts and have they, or others, been removed at your direction?
- What is the legal basis for your Administration’s decision to direct social media platforms to flag and remove posts from their sites?
- Does the White House have staff dedicated to searching social media for content to flag for removal?
Additionally, I request a briefing on this issue by August 2, 2021. I appreciate your attention to this urgent matter.
About the Author:
Jason Vaughn, Media Coordinator for The Tennessee Conservative
Jason previously worked for a legacy publishing company based in Crossville, TN in a variety of roles through his career. Most recently, he served as Deputy Directory for their flagship publication. Prior, he was a freelance journalist writing articles that appeared in the Herald Citizen, the Crossville Chronicle and The Oracle among others. He graduated from Tennessee Technological University with a Bachelor’s in English-Journalism, with minors in Broadcast Journalism and History. Contact Jason at news@TennesseeConservativeNews.com