10 October, 2021

And It Was Unanimous. The FEC Has No Interest in Protecting Election Integrity

FEC rules Twitter shadowbanning Congressman Matt Gaetz wasn't election interference (reclaimthenet.org)

It’s hard to see what else it could have been, but don’t worry, the FEC will twist itself in knots to explain it to you.

The FEC rejected the argument, Business Insider reported, referring to a 2019 legal analysis by its general counsel that found out that Twitter could legally limit an account’s activity if it is concerned about “divisive content.” The analysis also concluded that Twitter messages are not “debate within the meaning of the Commission’s regulation,” as its definition of debate means “face-to-face appearances or confrontations.”

Ah. It’s not a debate platform. Ok, ok, tell all the people debating on it to just stop, then.

In the original complaint, Gaetz said that Twitter’s shadowban amounted to “making an in-kind contribution to [Gaetz’s] political opponents.”

He used a “free billboards” analogy to make his point: “Imagine the following: a billboard company in Florida wants to get involved in the political process, so it offers all candidates running for office… free billboards to promote their campaigns.”

“If the company did not randomly assign locations, but rather, offered large billboards in premium locations within the district to Democratic candidates, but only offered billboards stuck behind dumpsters, outside the district, to Republican candidates, it could not credibly argue that it was not giving an “in-kind” donation to the Democratic candidates.”

The complaint also argued that Twitter was a debate platform, and, therefore, it is supposed to follow FEC’s regulations on political debates.

“Twitter, as a self-identified news organization, and as a recognized debate platform, is a staging organization for candidate debates,” the complaint said.

That seems pretty logical. The FEC’s statement…does not.

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