Ohio Republican Rep. Jim Jordan, the ranking member of the House Judiciary Committee, released one of two minority reports Tuesday at the conclusion of a 15-month investigation into big tech anti-competitive market practices.
Jordan’s report, signed by Republican colleagues Matt Gaetz and Greg Steube of Florida, Doug Collins of Georgia, and Ken Buck of Colorado, centers on bias from Silicon Valley tech giants omitted from the Democratic report.
“Big Tech is out to get conservatives,” the Republicans wrote. “Time and again, Big Tech uses its power to suppress and marginalize conservative voices. Evidence of both underlying bias and arbitrary censorship continues to mount, and these tendencies are shaping corporate policies and implementation.”
While the committee’s anti-trust investigation targeted the big four in Silicon Valley — Facebook, Google, Apple, and Amazon, whose executives testified before House lawmakers in July — a considerable length of the report singled out Twitter, whose CEO was absent from the summer hearing. The social media giant had just suffered a massive security breach two weeks prior.
“Any discussion of bias in Big Tech is incomplete without discussing Twitter,” Republicans wrote. “Yet, Democrats denied Republicans—and the American people—the opportunity to hear from Twitter.”
Republicans called out the platform’s 2018 “shadow-ban” of the committee’s Jordan and Gaetz along with then-North Carolina Rep. Mark Meadows and California Rep. Devin Nunes. Each is among the most vocal conservatives in the lower chamber.
“Yet, Twitter did not ban a single Member of the 78-person Progressive Caucus,” Republicans complained.
The Republican report also hammered Google for its failed attempt to de-platform The Federalist in June allegedly for content in its comment sections despite Google-owned YouTube infamously hosting some of the most nefarious comment sections on the internet. Republicans highlighted the summer episode as a prime example of how the search engine can weaponize its monopoly power to suppress dissent in the 21st-century public square.
Jordan’s report followed another minority response to Democrats spearheaded by Buck, who released a “Third Way” report earlier in the afternoon. While also highlighting unfair censorship, including Google’s attacks on The Federalist, Buck’s response centered on offering a rebuttal to Democrat recommendations.
Buck’s report, signed by Gaetz, Collins, and Rep. Andy Biggs of Arizona, complained that several proposed reforms are too broad and could bring unintended consequences commonly symptomatic with big government. In an interview with The Federalist, however, Buck emphasized he’s optimistic about the opportunity for bipartisan compromise.
“There’s bipartisan agreement on the problem,” Buck said.
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