“Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I appreciate the gentleman yielding.
“A ploy? It’s not a ploy when the Department of Justice treats parents as terrorists, moms and dads who are simply showing up at a school board meeting to advocate for their son or daughter.
“A ploy? It’s not a ploy when the FBI pays Twitter $3 million, not one, not two, but $3 million to censor American citizens.
“It’s not a ploy when the Department of Homeland Security tries to set up a disinformation governance board because we all know that the Department of Homeland Security can tell what’s good speech and what is bad speech.
“You got to be kidding me. I’ll tell you what. Dozens of whistleblowers [who] have come talk to Republican staff on the Judiciary Committee don’t think this is a ploy.
“That’s why they came to talk to us. They know how serious this is. The former Democrat Chair of the Judiciary Committee is in the press today saying we’re gonna fight this tooth and nail. This is political.
“But meanwhile, the former Democrat Chair of the Intelligence Committee pressured Twitter to censor a journalist. You’ve got to be kidding me. This is the most important.
This is about the First Amendment, something you guys used to care about.
“And I’d actually hoped we could get bipartisan agreement on protecting the First Amendment.
“The five rights we enjoy as Americans under the First Amendment. Your right to practice your faith, your right to assemble, right to petition the government, freedom of the press, freedom of speech. Every single one’s been attacked in the last two years.
“The government was telling people they couldn’t go to church just a few years ago.
“Your right to assemble, your right to petition the government. The Democrats kept the Capitol closed. You couldn’t as a citizen come to your Capitol that you pay for to address your member of Congress to redress your grievances because Nancy Pelosi wouldn’t let you in.
“Freedom of the press. I just told you what the head of the Intel Committee tried to do to a journalist. The most important right we have, though, is your right to talk.
“Because if you can’t talk, you can’t practice your faith. You can’t share your faith, you can’t petition your government.
“The right to speak is the most important, and that’s what they’re going after. And that’s why we’ve had dozens of whistleblowers come talk to us.
“We want to focus on that because we want it all to stop. We want the double standard to stop.
“This idea that if you’re a pro-life activist, you’re gonna get your door kicked in, you’re gonna get arrested and handcuffed in front of your seven kids and your spouse for simply praying in front of an abortion clinic and telling the guy who was harassing your son to knock it off.
“You’re gonna have the FBI raid your home, but the protests that went on at Supreme Court Justices’ homes in the aftermath of the leak of the Dobbs opinion, oh, no problem there.
“Americans are sick and tired of it. And what we want we don’t want to go after anyone. We just want it to stop, and we want to respect the First Amendment to the Constitution that the greatest country in the world has.
That’s what this committee is all about. And that’s what we’re going to focus on. That’s what we’re going to do.”