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Tags: ted cruz | censorship | big tech | fbi | colleges

Sen. Cruz: Govt 'Laundering Taxpayer Dollars' for Censorship

By    |   Wednesday, 06 December 2023 01:36 PM EST

The Biden administration's government agencies have paid to police and censor constitutionally protected speech, which Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, said amounts to "laundering taxpayer dollars."

Now, as the ranking member of Senate Commerce Committee, Cruz is calling for information to conduct oversight on behalf of Republicans seeking to hold President Joe Biden, his administration's agencies, and Democrat operatives accountable.

"In addition to directly flagging content to social media companies, government agencies funneled money to private-sector third parties, including nonprofits and academic institutions that then pressured social media companies to remove content and accounts," Cruz wrote in letters to four Biden administration government agencies.

"By laundering taxpayer dollars through third parties, government agencies tried to absolve themselves of liability for infringement of Americans' First Amendment rights."

The recipients of Cruz's letter include the State Department, FBI, Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), and National Science Foundation (NSF).

Cruz is asking those Biden agencies to turn over information regarding their role in helping facilitate the censorship of Americans' constitutionally protected speech online.

Cruz opened the investigation into Big Tech's content moderation and censorship practices in February. Cruz says the ongoing investigation has exposed the suppression of free speech on social media driven by government agencies and non-governmental third parties that receive funding from taxpayers.

The State Department, in an effort to "counter foreign state and non-state propaganda and disinformation efforts," sent social media companies lists of individuals they identified as "inauthentic" — including everyday Americans in addition to foreign actors, according to Cruz.

The NSF doled out millions to fund Stanford University and the University of Washington's "Election Integrity Partnership," which successfully influenced social media companies into "moderating" millions of tweets flagged by CISA and the FBI.

"In an interview, the program's lead researcher admitted taxpayer money was intentionally channeled through a third party so that the government could evade First Amendment liability," according to Cruz's news release.

The FBI also partnered with universities to discuss research methodologies that would flag online "misinformation," which often captured conservative views, according to Cruz.

"Just because the government hires a hitman to kill speech does not absolve the government of guilt," Sen. Cruz wrote in his letters. "Regrettably, the examples described above appear to be just a handful of numerous instances of third parties being awarded taxpayer dollars and other government support to suppress speech.

"It has also become apparent that our nation's higher education institutions were often used as conduits through which the government could police speech online."

Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., the ranking member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, which has jurisdiction over the FBI, signed on to the Cruz's call for information to conduct oversight.

Eric Mack

Eric Mack has been a writer and editor at Newsmax since 2016. He is a 1998 Syracuse University journalism graduate and a New York Press Association award-winning writer.

© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.


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The Biden administration's government agencies have paid to police and censor constitutionally protected speech, which Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, said amounts to "laundering taxpayer dollars."
ted cruz, censorship, big tech, fbi, colleges
448
2023-36-06
Wednesday, 06 December 2023 01:36 PM
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