A foreign organization that helps media organizations censor conservatives was covertly funneled nearly a half-million dollars in taxpayer funding by the Biden administration, investigators revealed.
House Committee on Oversight and Accountability Chairman James Comer (R-Ky.) is now demanding Secretary of State Antony Blinken explain reports that U.S. taxpayer dollars were used to suppress Biden’s political opponents ahead of the 2022 elections.
Under the scheme, the Biden State Department slipped $330,000.00 to a British-based organization calling itself the “Global Disinformation Index “(GDI).
The GDI then created “risk ratings” of news websites accused of “risky” content, which are then used to pressure advertisers into ceasing support of the targeted website.
The New York Post, which reported on the seemingly illegal contents of a laptop owned by Biden’s adult son Hunter, was one of the sites targeted for de-platforming by the Biden-funded program. Newsmax, RealClearPolitics, and The Federalist were among the other sites targeted.
It is unconstitutional for the president to use taxpayer dollars to censor opponents.
“The Committee on Oversight and Accountability is investigating reports that federal funds administered by the Department of State were used to suppress lawful speech and defund disfavored news outlets under the guise of combatting disinformation,” wrote Chairman Comer in a letter to Blinken.
“The Committee is disturbed by recent reporting that taxpayer money ended up in the hands of a foreign organization running an advertising blacklist of organizations accused of hosting disinformation on their websites, including several conservative-leaning news organizations. The Committee seeks documents and a staff-level briefing to understand the scope of the Department’s use of federal funds for a taxpayer-funded censorship campaign,” Comer writes.
“We continue to be concerned by efforts across the federal government to censor the lawful speech of Americans and discredit legitimate criticism as mis-, dis-, or mal- information, whether through the creation of a ‘Disinformation Governance Board,’ or labeling dissenting opinions as threats to critical infrastructure,” writes Comer.
The federal government should not be censoring free speech nor policing what news outlets Americans choose to consume. And taxpayer funds should never be given to third parties with the intent that they be used to censor lawful speech or abridge the freedom of the press,” added Comer.
Comer is demanding Blinken’s turn over, no later than March 9, 2023:
All documents and communications regarding any grant or other funding administered by
the Department or organizations funded by the Department used to suppress so-called mis-, dis-, or mal- information of individuals or news organizations within the United States from January 20, 2021 to the present;
- All documents and communications regarding any grant or other funding administered by
the Department or organizations funded by the Department issued to the Global Disinformation Index;
- All documents and communications between any Department employee, contractor,
grantee, and any other individual, whether within or outside the federal government, referring or relating to any efforts to suppress so-called mis-, dis-, or mal- information uttered or hosted by any individual or organization within the United States;
- All documents and communications sufficient to show the identities of any Department
employees, contractors, or grantees whose duties included, at any point, encouraging a third party to take action against any individual or organization within the United States uttering or hosting content considered mis-, dis-, or mal- information by the Department or organizations funded by the Department.