A little over two weeks after a WSJ report revealed Facebook had a hidden list of people who are not subject to their own rules about what content could be published, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis’ team opened an investigation into the tech giant for potential election manipulation.
In a letter to Florida Sec. of State Laurel Lee, DeSantis showed concern that Facebook’s “cross check” or “XCheck” system broke Florida’s election laws.
The first reporting on XCheck seemed to be on September 13 as part of a Journal article on the practices of the social platform.
While it was originally said to be “a quality-control assurance measure for actions against high-profile accounts, including politicians, celebrities and reporters,” the Journal’s Jeff Horwitz said, “XCheck now rules that some users are immune from enforcement. Others can publish content that breaks Facebook guidelines pending a manual review, one that usually never happens.”
“In 2019, it allowed a white-listed account to post that then-President Trump had said that all refugees were ‘animals,’ according to the documents,” Horwitz reported.
During a review in 2019, it was reported that the program was filled with favoritism that was “not defensible.”
That’s all distasteful, but here is where it possibly comes up against Florida’s election laws:
“While the program had most government officials, it did not include every election candidate, at times effectively giving incumbents in elections the advantage over their challengers,” Horwitz said. “The problem was most prevalent in local and state races, the report reveals, and employees worried that Facebook could be accused of favoritism.”
NEW FROM @RonDeSantisFL 🚨👀
“If this new report is true, Facebook has violated FL law to put its thumb on the scale of numerous state & local races.
Floridians deserve to know how much this corporate titan has influenced our elections."
READ MORE ⬇️https://t.co/vFPUbawfqn
— Team DeSantis (@teamrondesantis) September 27, 2021
“It is not a secret that Liberal Tech censors have long used their rules inconsistently,” DeSantis said in a comment released this week.
“If this news is true, Facebook has broken Florida law to tip the scale of numerous local and state elections. Floridians deserve to know how this corporate giant has influenced our elections. That is why I am ordering Secretary Lee to use all legal methods to find violations of Florida’s laws. The thought of Facebook secrets manipulating elections goes agains the basic principles of our country. We the people have the ability to choose our leaders, not Silicon Valley CEOs.”
I am authorizing @FLSecofState and the Florida Department of State to open an investigation into Facebook’s alleged election interference through its whitelisting program.
Floridians deserve to know how much Big Tech has influenced our elections. pic.twitter.com/rmGmZ6BK6T
— Ron DeSantis (@GovRonDeSantis) September 27, 2021
Author: Steven Sinclaire