State Watch

Texas attorney general investigating GoFundMe over halt in donations to Canadian truckers

AP.

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton (R) said Wednesday that his office will investigate GoFundMe’s decision to halt a fundraiser for Canadian truckers protesting COVID-19 mandates. 

He said in a statement that his office is investigating the past and present practices of GoFundMe Inc. to determine whether the company is violating the state’s Deceptive Trade Practices Act.

Paxton added that the crowdfunding platform’s integrity has “come into question after it removed a multimillion-dollar fundraising campaign for the Canadian truckers ‘Freedom Convoy’ which is protesting vaccine mandates.” 

He added that GoFundMe’s response to what he called “an anti-mandate, pro-liberty movement” should alarm anyone using the donation platform as well as “any American wanting to protect their constitutional rights,” Paxton said.

“Many Texans donated to this worthy cause. I am acting to protect Texas consumers so that they know where their hard-earned money is going, rather than allowing GoFundMe to divert money to another cause without the consent of Texas citizens. I will get to the bottom of this deceitful action,” he added. 

The latest news from the attorney general comes as Paxton has extended his support to the Canadian “Freedom Convoy” protests over the weekend where he referred to GoFundMe as a “BLM-backing company” that “went woke, froze the funds, and failed to deliver Texans’ money.”

He added that he had “assembled a team to investigate their potential fraud and deception” and said “Texas donors will get Justice!”

In response, Canadian Public Safety Minister Marco Mendicino hit back at Paxton’s comments saying it is “certainly not the concern of the Texas attorney general as to how we in Canada go about our daily lives in accordance with the rule of law,” according to The Associated Press.

When it halted the fundraiser earlier this month, GoFundMe said it “supports peaceful protests and we believe that was the intention of the Freedom Convoy 2022 fundraiser when it was first created.”

It added that the company has evidence from law enforcement that the “previously peaceful demonstration has become an occupation, with police reports of violence and other unlawful activity.”

The company said it will automatically refund all contributions directly and donors do not need to submit a request.

The protests began after truckers gathered to protest the COVID-19 vaccine mandates and protocols. President Biden is facing the possibility of truck driver protests mirroring those in Canada over vaccine mandates.

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