The Federal Election Commission has exonerated Twitter for its brazen election meddling, according to new reporting from The New York Times. The government agency dismissed GOP allegations that Twitter broke election laws immediately before the November 2020 presidential election when it prevented users from sharing a link to a New York Post story detailing Hunter Biden’s shady overseas business dealings uncovered on his abandoned laptop.
According to the Times, the FEC ruling, which was made behind closed doors and has not yet been released, says the Big Tech giant’s actions in censoring the Biden bombshell were for “valid commercial reasons,” not political purposes. The Republican National Committee, however, says Twitter’s decision to shield the story from public view was an “illegal in-kind contribution” to the Biden campaign.
That’s because the New York Post article didn’t just indict the Biden son. It exposed the unethical behaviors of then-candidate Joe Biden in the run-up to the highly contested presidential election against Big Tech and corporate media enemy Donald Trump.
The article detailed how Hunter Biden monetized foreign companies’ access to his father while Joe Biden was vice president. Emails, documents, and photos showed how the Biden son leveraged his father’s position for gain with the Ukrainian energy company Burisma. A second New York Post bombshell revealed how Hunter allegedly pursued business deals with one of China’s largest energy companies in an attempt to cash in “for me and my family.”
Citing its “hacked materials policy,” Twitter suspended the New York Post’s account after the outlet reported on the contents of Hunter Biden’s laptop, which had been abandoned, not hacked, at a Delaware computer repair shop. This was after the tech giant had already been blocking the story link from being posted or shared privately.
TODAY, blocking links to ANOTHER NYPost story alleging Hunter Biden sold access to communist China for millions. I just tried to share that story. Here’s Twitter’s response 👇 pic.twitter.com/NZpw4gmcb2
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) October 15, 2020
In addition to citing its policy on “hacked materials” despite the reported materials never having been hacked, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey said the story blackout was a “mistake” — though the tech giant blocked it for two full weeks. Nevertheless, the FEC decided that Twitter had “credibly explained” how banning the article was a commercial decision rather than brazen election meddling.
“Worse” than Twitter’s so-called “mistake,” RNC spokeswoman Emma Vaughn told The New York Times and The Federalist, is that “it was also illegal and our complaint persuasively explains why. The RNC Is weighing its options for appealing this disappointing decision from the FEC.”
The implications of this decision, however, extend beyond the Republican group. The FEC’s ruling comes amid continued concerns over censorship on Big Tech websites and sets a precedent for these left-wing actors purporting to be neutral “platforms” — such as Facebook, YouTube, and Snapchat — to nuke reporting from their political opponents and get away with it under the guise of “valid commercial reasons.”
Meanwhile, the Biden administration has explicitly said it is working with Facebook to flag “misinformation,” and YouTube has begun removing content and channels that question election integrity or discuss science surrounding COVID-19. Twitter has kept up its ban on the 45th president of the United States and other right-wing figures, while it continues to give a Taliban spokesman a platform.