Republicans are eyeing investigatory hearings into Twitter’s purported censorship of former President Donald Trump and conservatives when they take control of the U.S. House of Representatives next month.
Republicans say the latest installment of Elon Musk’s “Twitter Files” show that censorship ran amok at the social media giant leading up to and after the 2020 election.
“Big Tech has appeared before the House Energy and Commerce Committee numerous times, and have claimed they weren’t shadow-banning people on their platforms,” said Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, the incoming chairwoman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee. “These new Twitter files have exposed that was a lie.”
McMorris Rodgers, R-Wash., said Republicans on the energy and commerce panel were still looking at oversight options related to Twitter next year.
“We’ll continue our robust oversight of all Big Tech companies to be more transparent about how they’re silencing Americans,” she said.
GOP lawmakers on the House Judiciary Committee are similarly weighing a probe into Twitter’s conduct during the pre-Musk era.
“Everything’s on the table when it comes to the Twitter files,” said a judiciary committee spokesman. “Stay tuned.”
Twitter did not respond to requests for comment on this story.
GOP lawmakers are weighing investigations after Musk allowed journalists to comb through thousands of pages of internal Twitter documents. That led to a series of tweets on the “Twitter Files” — a multipart expose into the social media giant’s censorship of Trump and conservative voices.
The first part of the expose showed how Twitter’s standards on free speech eroded during the 2020 election, culminating in Trump’s ban from the platform in the wake of the January 6 assault on the U.S. Capitol. The second installment detailed the shadow-banning of conservative voices on Twitter.
The third installment detailed how Twitter executives decided to ban Trump even though the former president was not in violation of the social media company’s rules.