Judicial Watch announced on Tuesday that it filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) for records of communications between the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and social media sites regarding foreign influence in elections, as well as the Hunter Biden laptop story (Judicial Watch Inc. v U.S. Department of Justice (No. 1:23-cv-00079)).
Judicial Watch filed the suit in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia after the FBI failed to respond fully to an August 28, 2022, FOIA request for:
- All alerts, notifications, advisories, foreign threat indicators, or similar records provided by any official or employee of the FBI to any officer or employee of Meta (formerly Facebook), Twitter, or any other social media company regarding the threat of disinformation disseminated by foreign actors related to any U.S. election.
- All records of communication between any official or employee of the FBI and any officer or employee of Meta, Twitter, or any other social media company regarding the laptop reportedly used by Hunter Biden, any news media reporting regarding the laptop and/or its contents, and/or the provenance of any information contained in any such reporting.
In October 2020, in the run-up to the presidential election, the New York Post was able to confirm that Hunter Biden’s laptop, which was abandoned at a Delaware computer shop, contained embarrassing and possibly incriminating information about the Biden family. The Post story was censored by Twitter and other social media platforms despite its accuracy. Recent “Twitter files” released by Elon Musk show that FBI pressure on “Russian disinformation” led to the censorship:
San Francisco FBI agent Elvis Chan “[sent] 10 documents to Twitter’s then-Head of Site Integrity, Yoel Roth, through Teleporter, a one-way communications channel from the FBI to Twitter,” the evening before the release of the Post story.
Other “Twitter files” show the FBI pushed Twitter to also censor countless Twitter users who tweeted concerns (and jokes) about election integrity just before the 2020 election.
“The FBI was literally paying Twitter to censor Americans just before the 2020 election!” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. “The FBI seems to have interfered in the 2020 election to help Joe Biden by encouraging Big Tech to censor Americans about the Hunter Biden laptop and other debates. And to add to the scandal, they are now covering up their misconduct.”
Through FOIA Judicial Watch is investigating other instances of censorship.
Judicial Watch is suing the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) for all records of communications between the Cybersecurity and Information Security Agency (CISA), a division of DHS, and the Election Integrity Partnership (EIP), which was created to flag online election content for censorship and suppression.
In September 2022, Judicial Watch sued the Secretary of State of the State of California for having YouTube censor a Judicial Watch election integrity video.
In May 2022, YouTube censored a Judicial Watch video about Biden corruption and election integrity issues in the 2020 election. The video, titled “Impeach? Biden Corruption Threatens National Security,” was falsely determined to be “election misinformation” and removed by YouTube, and Judicial Watch’s YouTube account was suspended for a week. The video featured an interview of Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. Judicial Watch continues to post its video content on its Rumble channel (https://rumble.com/vz7aof-fitton-impeach-biden-corruption-threatens-national-security.html).
In April 2021, Judicial Watch published documents revealing how California state officials pressured social media companies (Twitter, Facebook, Google (YouTube) to censor posts about the 2020 election.
In May 2021, Judicial Watch revealed documents showing that Iowa state officials pressured social media companies Twitter and Facebook to censor posts about the 2020 election.
In July 2021, Judicial Watch uncovered records from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which revealed that Facebook coordinated closely with the CDC to control the COVID narrative and “misinformation” and that over $3.5 million in free advertising given to the CDC by social media companies.