House Judiciary Committee chairman Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) subpoenaed five big tech CEOs Wednesday for documents related to their companies’ censorship practices and to what extent, if any, those practices involved the U.S. government.
Jordan’s subpoenas, reviewed by Breitbart News, seek information that could pertain to his committee’s “weaponization of the federal government” panel’s probes into alleged First Amendment violations by U.S. government agencies.
The subpoenas were issued to:
- Sundar Pichai of Alphabet
- Andy Jassy of Amazon
- Mark Zuckerberg of Meta
- Satya Nadella of Microsoft
- Tim Cook of Apple
They demand the CEOs to produce by March 23 any and all documents and communications between their respective companies and the executive branch of the U.S. government that relate to the companies’ “moderation, deletion, suppression, restricting, or reduced circulation of content.”
Jordan sent numerous requests to the various big tech bosses while serving as ranking member of the Judiciary Committee in December, and reiterated the requests to each of them in letters on February 6 while serving as chairman.
The February 6 letters, obtained by Breitbart News, sought the material now being subpoenaed “immediately.” They noted that although “conversations” between congressional staff and the companies had occurred as a result of the prior requests, the companies still had “not made any substantial steps toward compliance.”
In cover letters accompanying the subpoenas, Jordan wrote to the CEOs:
To develop effective legislation, such as the possible enactment of new statutory limits on the Executive Branch’s ability to work with Big Tech to restrict the circulation of content and deplatform users, the Committee on the Judiciary must first understand how and to what extent the Executive Branch coerced and colluded with companies and other intermediaries to censor speech.
Jordan excluded Twitter CEO Elon Musk from the big tech targets, pointing in the cover letters to the now-public Twitter files revealing interactions between Twitter and the government and the “benchmark” Twitter had thereby set “for how transparent Big Tech companies can be about interactions with government over censorship.”
“Numerous internal documents from Twitter reflect the weaponization of the federal government’s power to censor speech online,” Jordan wrote, adding that it was “necessary for Congress to gauge the extent to which this occurred” at the other big tech companies.