Senate Republicans ready subpoenas for Twitter, Facebook CEOs after censoring Biden stories

The Senate Judiciary Committee will subpoena the Big Tech leaders if they do not agree to testify voluntarily

Updated: October 23, 2020 - 9:26am

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Senate Republicans' efforts to get Big Tech to address the issue of censorship on social media platforms intensified Thursday when a group of GOP lawmakers readied subpoenas for the CEOs of Twitter and Facebook to compel them to testify before Congress on the matter.

The Senate Judiciary Committee approved the subpoenas for Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey

The subpoenas were approved by all 12 GOP member of the committee, with none of its 10 Democratic members voting.

The renewed effort follows both social media platforms having limited the postings of a New York Post story about emails allegedly found on the laptop of Hunter Biden, the son of Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden.

According to the subpoena document, the committee wants to hear from CEOs about "the suppression and/or censorship of two news articles from the New York Post." 

In recent months, the subject of Big Tech regulation has become a hot-button political discussion, as the Justice Department asks Congress to roll back parts of Section 230, a law that has provided protection for online platforms for many years.

This summer, President Trump signed an executive order challenging Section 230 protections after Twitter began labeling his tweets with accuracy warnings. 

Next week, Zuckerberg, Dorsey, and Sundar Pichai, Google's CEO, will testify before the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation committee. Earlier this week, the Justice Department filed an antitrust suit against Google, the most significant of its kind of decades, accusing the massive company of abusing its leading role in the online search and advertising space. 

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