Biden campaign slams Zuckerberg's 'feigned concern for free expression'

Biden campaign slams Zuckerberg's 'feigned concern for free expression'
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Former Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenGOP senators balk at lengthy impeachment trial 2020 Democrats make play for veterans' votes 2020 Dems put focus on stemming veteran suicides MORE's presidential campaign on Thursday hit Facebook CEO Mark ZuckerbergMark Elliot ZuckerbergHillicon Valley: Federal inquiry opened into Google health data deal | Facebook reports millions of post takedowns | Microsoft shakes up privacy debate | Disney plus tops 10M sign-ups in first day A book can explain why Elizabeth Warren's ideas bother billionaires so much Facebook says it removed millions of posts over hate speech, child exploitation violations MORE over a speech where the executive defended his company's decision not to take down political advertisements with inaccuracies.

“Facebook has chosen to sell Americans’ personal data to politicians looking to target them with disproven lies and conspiracy theories, crowding out the voices of working Americans," Bill Russo, the Biden campaign's deputy communications director, said in a statement.

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"Zuckerberg attempted to use the Constitution as a shield for his company’s bottom line, and his choice to cloak Facebook’s policy in a feigned concern for free expression demonstrates how unprepared his company is for this unique moment in our history and how little it has learned over the past few years,” Russo said.

Biden's campaign lashed out after Zuckerberg delivered a speech at Georgetown University where he argued that it is not Facebook's role to moderate political content.

“Political ads can be an important part of voice, especially for local candidates and up and coming challengers that the media might not otherwise cover,” he said. “Banning political ads favors incumbents and whoever the media chooses to cover.” 

Zuckerberg and Facebook have received backlash over their policy for political ads, with criticism mounting recently after President TrumpDonald John TrumpGOP senators balk at lengthy impeachment trial Warren goes local in race to build 2020 movement 2020 Democrats make play for veterans' votes MORE’s reelection campaign released an ad targeting Biden.

The ad, which highlighted a line of attack from Trump against Biden, accused the former vice president — without evidence — of using his former office to pressure Ukrainian officials to drop an investigation into a company due to his son's financial interests.

Sen. Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenWarren goes local in race to build 2020 movement 2020 Democrats make play for veterans' votes 2020 Dems put focus on stemming veteran suicides MORE (D-Mass.) has been especially vocal about criticizing the policy, calling Facebook a “disinformation-for-profit machine.”

She hammered home the criticism by running a campaign ad falsely claiming that Zuckerberg supports Trump's reelection bid.