Sen. Cruz to Big Tech: Censorship of Report on Biden-Burisma Meeting is Obvious and Transparent Attempt to Influence Upcoming Election
Calls on Twitter and Facebook to immediately provide answers behind censorship of New York Post report
October 14, 2020
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Following Twitter and Facebook's censorship of a New York Post story on a meeting between Hunter Biden, then-Vice President Joe Biden, and an adviser to the board of Burisma, U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), chairman of the Subcommittee on The Constitution, today sent two letters - one to Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey and one to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg - requesting information behind the Big Tech giants' decision to censor the report - calling the move an ‘obvious and transparent attempt' to influence the November election.
In the letter to Twitter, Sen. Cruz wrote:
"This morning, the New York Post-the newspaper with the fourth highest daily circulation in the United States-published an article reporting that ‘Hunter Biden introduced his father, then-Vice President Joe Biden, to a top executive at a Ukrainian energy firm less than a year before the elder Biden pressured government officials in Ukraine into firing a prosecutor who was investigating the Company.' Like many reports on political scandals published in major new outlets, the Post's report is based on leaked e-mail correspondence. And if these emails are authentic, they would demonstrate definitively that now-candidate Biden lied when he said in 2016 that he had ‘never spoken to [his] son about his overseas business dealings.'
"Twitter has apparently decided to preemptively censor this report. Twitter is not only prohibiting users from sharing this story on their own accounts, it is prohibiting the New York Post itself from posting its own content. [...] Twitter's censorship of this story is quite hypocritical, given its willingness to allow users to share less-well-sourced reporting critical of other candidates for public office. Accordingly, this can only be seen as an obvious and transparent attempt by Twitter to influence the upcoming Presidential election."
In the letter to Facebook, Sen. Cruz wrote:
"Facebook apparently decided, almost immediately upon the article's publication, to preemptively and affirmatively reduce dissemination of this reporting. As the company has already, publicly stated, it has ‘reduc[ed] its distribution on our platform.' The company made clear that, nevertheless, ‘this story is eligible to be fact checked by Facebook's third-party fact checking partners.' It would appear, then, that the decision was made to limit the reach of the New York Post reporting before any determination had been made, in the first instance, about its factual accuracy.
"This conduct is, quite simply, hypocritical. Facebook has famously allowed users to share less-well-sourced reporting critical of other candidates for public office. This rush to limit the dissemination and reach of a report - containing information of high public interest and consequence - and the contrast with how similarly situated material on other candidates has been handled, strongly suggests that the true motivation is to influence the upcoming Presidential election."