The release of the Twitter Files, for the most part, confirms what Donald Trump and his supporters knew in 2020. Big Tech drastically suppressed information damaging to Joe Biden—his son’s overseas financial dealings and the Democratic Party’s plans to ensure Biden’s victory with an unprecedented flood of mail-in ballots—before Election Day.
The series of posts by independent journalists Matt Taibbi, Michael Shellenberger, and Bari Weiss reveal internal communications between top executives as they contorted company policy on the fly to accommodate the Democrats’ political motives. Taibbi kicked off the party on December 2 with a series of tweets detailing how Twitter banned the New York Post’s reporting on Hunter Biden’s laptop and continued to defend the move even after some company honchos admitted it was indefensible. “By this point ‘everyone knew this was fucked,’ said one former employee, but the response was essentially to err on the side of . . . continuing to err,” Taibbi wrote while posting screenshots of chat messages between decision-makers.
Weiss followed up by outlining Twitter’s shadow banning—a practice that former CEO Jack Dorsey repeatedly denied—aimed at conservative influencers such as Dan Bongino and Charlie Kirk in 2020. This built up to a fever pitch that climaxed on January 6, 2021, when a four-hour disturbance finally gave Twitter and other social media behemoths the excuse they had been hoping for to fulfill Big Tech’s dream of permanently deplatforming the president. “The bulk of the internal debate leading to Trump’s ban took place in those three January days,” Taibbi explained, referring to January 6, 7, and 8, the day Trump was banned. “However, the intellectual framework was laid in the months preceding the Capitol riots.” The pressure campaign to boot Trump, Shellenberger further disclosed, came from both internal and external forces including “Former First Lady @michelleobama , tech journalist @karaswisher , @ADL , high-tech VC @ChrisSacca.”
Members of Twitter’s “scaled enforcement team,” employees tasked with excavating any policy nugget to rationalize the pending ban, viewed Trump “as the leader of a terrorist group responsible for violence/deaths comparable to Christchurch shooter or Hitler,” one internal post read on January 8. A few hours later, Twitter announced the decision to suspend Trump’s account permanently; Twitter employees cheered. At least 70,000 Trump-supporting accounts also were purged in the days following.
While outrageous and clearly hostile to the spirit of political free speech in America, the question of whether the company engaged in illegal conduct remains an open one. Corporations are forbidden from directly donating to political campaigns; by quashing Hunter Biden laptop coverage as millions of Americans were voting for president, Big Tech essentially contributed hundreds of millions, perhaps more, in in-kind public relations services to the Biden campaign and the Democratic National Committee.
But the far more egregious aspect, and one with greater legal standing in terms of potential criminality, are the revelations that the FBI engaged with Big Tech executives on a routine basis to do the Biden family’s bidding in advance of the bombshell coverage in the Post and elsewhere. “We’ll show you what hasn’t been revealed: the erosion of standards within the company in months before J6, decisions by high-ranking executives to violate their own policies, and more, against the backdrop of ongoing, documented interaction with federal agencies,” Taibbi wrote on December 9. “This post about the Hunter Biden laptop situation shows that [Twitter’s former safety chief Yoel] Roth not only met weekly with the FBI and DHS, but with the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (DNI),” referring to the government’s demand that social media companies enforce “hacked materials” policies as a ruse to remove any content related to the laptop.
And unfounded claims made by FBI Director Christopher Wray in the fall of 2020 that malign foreign actors planned to damage the Democratic nominee for president again served only to buttress the agency’s efforts to bury the laptop story.
It was 2016 on steroids—baseless warnings of foreign election interference promoted by a hyper-partisan national security apparatus to undermine Trump’s campaign. The result was a wide-ranging conspiracy to oust the sitting president of the United States, considered an enemy of the same national security apparatus, by protecting his opponent, a longtime ally, in a tight election.
Further, thanks to the civil lawsuit filed by Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt and Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry, more evidence of how the two interests collaborated before the 2020 election is coming to light. The FBI didn’t just encourage Big Tech companies to restrict access to the laptop reporting but subtly threatened to pursue legal action if they didn’t. And those involved knew what they were doing was wrong. That’s why Elvis Chan, one of the bureau’s conduits to Silicon Valley, admitted many conversations were conducted on Signal, an encrypted chat application, which allows for disappearing messages. “Only the Signal information from the 2020 San Francisco Command Post was saved,” Chan told investigators during his court-ordered deposition.
Isn’t that convenient?
Chan, in addition to his routine contact with Twitter, also held meetings with executives at Facebook, Microsoft, Google, Yahoo, Wikimedia Foundation, and Reddit.
So, what now? House Republicans could do nothing else but investigate one corrupt government scandal after another for the next two years. The struggle is prioritizing the many inquiries incoming House committee chairmen have promised to pursue. This emerging scandal, however, must be at the top of the list.
Republicans must request—and receive!—all records from the FBI, Department of Justice, and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence related to interactions with Big Tech, the Biden campaign, and Democratic Party leaders. The inquiry should begin with departing House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, whose San Francisco district includes many large technology companies, to unearth evidence of the conspiracy.
Officials like Chan and his supervisors must testify publicly so the American people can watch them squirm. Investigate the possibility of perjury charges against Jack Dorsey and others who testified under oath that social media platforms applied an even hand in 2020.
And statewide GOP officials should comb through every state law to do what Democrats continue to do with a vengeance and to great success—find any arcane, ancient statute to sue or prosecute the people responsible.
The Republican National Committee should pursue legal action for the unlawful campaign contributions made by Big Tech to the Biden presidential campaign—and it might not hurt to sue the Biden campaign for failing to report large corporate donations, too. Ditto for Republican candidates and elected officials deplatformed or suppressed in the 2020 and 2022 elections.
Elon Musk’s one-man crusade to expose the inner workings of the technology giant he now owns is admirable at a time when the level of courage needed to confront the massive beast of government, Silicon Valley, the Biden regime, and traditional media is frighteningly low. Courage, as Billy Graham once said, is contagious. Let’s hope House Republicans can catch a really potent case of it, and soon.