Over the course of several years, Republicans have had an odd obsession with how Facebook operates.They have promoted this bizarre conspiracy theory that the social media platform has a deep anti-conservative bias.
As expected, GOP lawmakers on Capitol Hill did not waste the opportunity this week to grill CEO Mark Zuckerberg on the subject during congressional hearings intended to focus on the company’s sharing of user data.
To kick off the hoax series, Senator Ted Cruz led the discussion on Tuesday. Cruz said:
There are a great many Americans who I think are deeply concerned that Facebook and other tech companies are engaged in a pervasive pattern of bias and political censorship.”
Cruz went on to inaccurately accuse Facebook of “blocking” Lynette Hardaway and Rochelle Richard, two African-American sisters who have gained 1.4 million followers for their outspoken support for President Donald Trump as the social media personalities “Diamond and Silk.”
In addition to Diamond and Silk’s page, Cruz brought up other alleged incidents in which he said the company blocked conservative pages, citing a 2016 Gizmodo report about a former Facebook worker who said the company prevented conservative topics from appearing in the list of trending news topics.
But according to a Facebook executive, the company “found no evidence that the anonymous allegations” were accurate. Nice try, Ted.
Among other Republicans who drew all their arguments to biased censorship, Republican Steve Scalise fully committed to this false accusation by telling Twitter that he has “important questions” for Zuckerberg.
I had some important questions for Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg today. They need to ensure their platform does not discriminate against conservative views. pic.twitter.com/SyYu0ejhUQ
— Rep. Steve Scalise (@SteveScalise) April 11, 2018
It’s truly comical how the focus of this hearing is supposed to be on foreign interference via social media and Cambridge Analytica information theft, but instead, Republicans pulling out the ‘we’re the victims’ card. It’s apparent that these GOP moguls are turning a blind eye in order to deflect the whole Russian/Trump scenario.
Classic move from the GOP — too bad it won’t work.
Featured image via Mark Wilson/Getty Images