DOJ opens social media meeting to bipartisan state leaders

DOJ opens social media meeting to bipartisan state leaders

The Department of Justice is expanding the guest list for a meeting of state attorneys general to discuss social media companies later this month following criticism by Democratic states that said they were not invited.   

Attorney General Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsHouse Democrats seeking Sessions's testimony in impeachment probe McCabe's counsel presses US attorney on whether grand jury decided not to indict US attorney recommends moving forward with charges against McCabe after DOJ rejects his appeal MORE planned the meeting to discuss what the DOJ calls a “growing concern” that some tech companies are "hurting competition and intentionally stifling the free exchange of ideas on their platforms.”

Key states such as California and New York initially said they said did not receive an invite, but a DOJ official confirmed that California is included in a new batch of invitations. 

“Following last week’s statement, the Justice Department received an increased level of interest from state attorneys general in attending the September 25 meeting on tech companies, competition, and free exchange of ideas. Today, the Justice Department formally sent invitations to a bipartisan group of twenty-four state attorneys general that expressed an interest in attending the meeting hosted by Attorney General Jeff Sessions,” a Justice Department official said in a statement to The Hill. 


“[W]e look forward to having a robust dialogue with all attendees on the topic of social media platforms,” the official added. 

The meeting comes amid mounting Republican criticism of tech companies for allegedly stifling conservative voices by blocking or promoting certain search results and banning user accounts.

“Google search results for 'Trump News' shows only the viewing/reporting of Fake News Media. In other words, they have it RIGGED, for me & others, so that almost all stories & news is BAD. Fake CNN is prominent. Republican/Conservative & Fair Media is shut out. Illegal?” Trump tweeted last month.

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey and Facebook Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg faced questions on the subject at a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing in August. Dorsey was also grilled in front of the House Energy and Commerce Committee.

Facebook, Twitter and Google have all denied censoring conservative speech.