Politics Senate panel delays vote to subpoena Twitter, Facebook CEOs as some Republicans waver

03:15  20 october  2020
03:15  20 october  2020 Source:   politico.com

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The Senate Commerce Committee this morning voted unexpectedly to issue subpoenas to the heads of The committee agreed in a unanimous, bipartisan vote to require Facebook CEO Mark Several Republican members of Congress have introduced bills this year to reform or rewrite that particular

That gives the panel the authority to subpoena Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg, Google's Sundar Pichai and Twitter 's Jack Dorsey. Timing on issuing subpoenas or a potential hearing was not immediately clear. On Trump's radar: The White House has pressured Capitol Hill Republicans to

The Senate Judiciary Committee on Monday postponed plans to vote on subpoenas to compel the CEOs of Twitter and Facebook to testify on allegations of anti-conservative bias after some panel Republicans expressed reservation about the maneuver.

Jack Dorsey looking at the camera: Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey speaks during a press event. © Photo by David Becker/Getty Images Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey speaks during a press event.

President Donald Trump and his Republican allies have scorched the two social media companies in recent days over their handling of disputed New York Post reports alleging ties between Joe Biden and his son’s business interests.

Gameplan in flux: GOP Judiciary leaders had announced plans to hold a markup Tuesday on whether to subpoena Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey to testify on allegations the company's decisions on user posts stifle conservative viewpoints, which Twitter denies. Chair Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) later said the planned vote would also target Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

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Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai.Getty Images. The U.S. Senate Commerce Committee on Thursday unanimously voted to approve a plan to subpoena chief executives of Twitter , Alphabet’s Google and Facebook for a hearing likely to be

The Senate Commerce Committee plans to subpoena the CEOs of Google, Facebook and Twitter to John Keast, the panel ’s staff director, said Wicker has notified ranking member Maria Cantwell ( D -Wash Trump gathered Republican state attorneys general on Wednesday to discuss ways to crack

The panel announced Monday it will now consider whether to authorize the subpoenas at a high-profile executive session Thursday where it is separately expected to approve Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett. The committee said in a statement it will continue to negotiate with the companies "to allow for voluntary testimony" by the CEOs, but that if an agreement is not reached the panel will move ahead with a vote on the subpoenas "at a date to be determined."

The ask: The subpoenas would require the tech moguls to testify on the alleged "suppression and/or censorship" of the New York Post reporting and on "any other content moderation policies, practices, or actions that may interfere with or influence elections for federal office," according to a document released by the committee Monday.

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WASHINGTON — A Republican Senate committee chairman abruptly called off a subpoena vote on Wednesday after federal authorities shared concerns that a former Ukrainian official cooperating with Republican investigators could be spreading Russian disinformation.

(Bloomberg) -- A Senate panel voted Thursday to subpoena the chief executive officers of Facebook Inc., Alphabet Inc.’s Google, and The vote had initially appeared to be a Republican -led effort focused on the ways that conservatives say Section 230 enables companies to silence

Not everyone sold: Judiciary staff has indicated internally that plans for the vote were delayed in part due to some GOP panel members wavering on whether to support the action, according to one Senate GOP aide, who spoke anonymously to discuss private negotiations. Republican officials have also expressed trepidation about how quickly the committee has moved to vote on the subpoenas, the aide said. A committee spokesperson did not immediately offer comment on the matter.

But they’re not off the hook yet: Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), who chairs Judiciary’s Subcommittee on the Constitution, told reporters he’s expecting the committee to hear testimony from both Dorsey and Zuckerberg “shortly” whether they come willingly or not.

“One way or another, either voluntarily or pursuant to subpoena, they will testify and they will testify before the election,” Cruz said.

Zuckerberg and Dorsey are separately slated to testify alongside Google CEO Sundar Pichai next Wednesday for a Senate Commerce Committee hearing on the internet industry’s prized liability protections under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act.

Cruz, who sits on both Judiciary and Commerce, said he believes each panel should hold their own hearing with the tech CEOs ahead of Nov. 3. “I believe we need a separate hearing in Judiciary because the issues being discussed in the two committees are different,” Cruz said.

5 fact-checks from the Senate’s hearing on social media .
We took a closer look at the unproven claims lawmakers made about Facebook, Google, and Twitter.Wednesday’s hearing was supposed to focus on nuanced reforms to a landmark internet law — Section 230 — which shields tech companies from being sued for content users post on their platforms. Both Democrats and Republicans have been calling for years to reform this law, arguing that it is outdated considering how large and powerful these tech giants have become. That’s why the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation subpoenaed Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, Google CEO Sundar Pichai, and Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey to face questioning.

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