The backlash from both Democrats and Republicans was harsh; this came after the White House press secretary revealed earlier this month that the Biden administration was “flagging” posts on Facebook about coronavirus that they believed contains misinformation.
Conservatives criticized the administration, stating that they were colluding with Facebook in censoring free speech. They also argued that these big tech companies should not have a role in deciding whether one can or cannot share their thoughts.
Ted Cruz: 'Blatantly illegal' for White House to work with Facebook on misinformation https://t.co/pMRkLfCvxW #FoxNews "Supreme Court has long recognized…the government can't use a private company [e.g., Facebook] to carry out a government policy…this is what they're doing."
— Richard Holcroft (@CoastGuy02) July 22, 2021
Sen. Ted Cruz: the White House and Facebook are doing “state-sponsored censorship”
Republican Senator Ted Cruz said in an interview with Fox News that this act by the White House and Facebook is called “state-sponsored censorship”. He also added that it is one of the most significant threats to the First Amendment rights of Americans. Cruz then claimed that most of the corrupt media giants are either encouraging or going along with it.
Meanwhile, Republican Senator Tom Cotton also made comments about it saying that big tech giants, like Facebook and Twitter, should not have a role in censoring free speech. Cotton said in an interview that Mark Zuckerberg, owner of Facebook, and Jack Dorsey of Twitter, should not play as arbiters of the truth.
He added that the owners of these social media platforms should not have a role in censoring free speech. Cotton further claimed that social media companies might get used to having monopolies. However, they should not have a monopoly on the truth. Their approach towards this should be condemned and fought against.
Biden previously accused Facebook of “killing people,” forcing them to act and “try harder” in censoring free speech
Social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter faced criticism from Democrats and the mainstream media who accused them of not doing enough in stopping the spread of disinformation.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki also mentioned how Facebook historically does not take disinformation issues seriously. After Psaki made these comments, Biden also made a bold statement accusing Facebook of “killing people,” due to their failure to censor misinformation.
According to Associated Press, these comments from Biden and his officials were made to force the big tech companies to “act”. The editorial board of The Washington Post also went further, accusing Democrats of forcing Facebook to “try harder” and painting them as “unconstitutional censors.”
Ted Cruz claims that Biden is trampling "free speech" by trying to get Facebook to remove vaccine misinformation that is killing people. pic.twitter.com/TevF7iehYj
— Sarah Reese Jones (@PoliticusSarah) July 18, 2021
In addition to this, Sen. Cruz also mentioned how the media failed to take a stand against what he called government’s way of censoring Americans, which is not new. He added that these moves are just the most recent example of the false narrative that Americans are supposed to admit as the “gospel truth”.
Cruz said that the mainstream media and social media platforms are not just leaving Americans out in the dark by censoring posts, but they also turn off the lights to prevent Americans from seeing the truth.