(Republicaninformer.com)- Last week, the Wall Street Journal reported that the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) sent over a dozen letters to Twitter and its legal counsel since Elon Musk took over the company, including a request for the names of the journalists that were “granted access” to company records in creating the ongoing Twitter Files.
Additionally, the FTC demanded that the company turn over all documents related to the massive layoffs of Twitter employees and the company’s new Twitter Blue subscription service. It also demanded all internal communications related to Elon Musk, as well as an explanation for why Musk fired deputy general counsel Jim Baker.
Details of the FTC’s frequent demands emerged from an interim staff report from the House’s new Select Subcommittee on the Weaponization of the Federal Government which accuses the FTC of overreach in its harassment of Twitter.
In a press release on Tuesday, the Judiciary Committee said the frequency, scope, and timing of the FTC’s demands suggested a “partisan motivation” for its actions coming as they did after Elon Musk took over the company to “reorient Twitter around free speech.”
According to the Judiciary Committee, the “legal basis” behind the FTC’s barrage of letters, which included monitoring Twitter’s “privacy and information security program” based on the consent decree between Twitter and the FTC, does not provide “adequate cover for the FTC’s action” as many of the demands had nothing to do with user privacy and information.
The Judiciary Committee explained that the FTC has no “logical reason” to demand the identities of the journalists who are “engaging with Twitter,” nor is it logical, “on the basis of user privacy,” for the FTC to analyze every personnel decision Twitter has made or every internal communication about Elon Musk.
Michael Shellenberger, one of the journalists who has authored several installments of the Twitter Files, blasted the FTC’s actions, calling it an “outrageous attack on the First Amendment.”
In a reply to Shelleberger’s tweet, Twitter CEO Elon Musk described it as “a shameful case of weaponization of government” to suppress the truth “for political purposes.”