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The New York Times’ “Sway” podcast host Kara Swisher argued on Monday that there is “no evidence” of political bias by social media companies.
“Republicans keep crying bias censorship even though there isn’t any evidence,” Swisher said during an interview with California Democrat Rep. Ro Khanna.
Swisher, who is also a columnist for the Times, asked Khanna about congressional action when it comes to regulating Big Tech companies like Facebook and Twitter. She brought up an antitrust bill that would break up bigger tech companies.
“There’s a surprising bipartisan agreement on the need for this. Ken Buck and David Cicilline agreeing seems to be a very unusual thing. This is a Congressman from out West with David Cicilline, who’s from Rhode Island, couldn’t be more different, as people. They do agree on this, these changes. Amy Klobuchar and Charles Grassley agreeing on this. There is a lot of commonality of something needs to be done, but the motivations are slightly different,” Swisher said before alleging there is no bias censorship against conservatives. “Is that argument just the bitter pill Democrats won’t have to swallow to pass regulation?”
BABYLON BEE CEO WON’T HELP TWITTER ‘ERADICATE OBJECTIVE TRUTH’ BY DELETING SATIRICAL RACHEL LEVINE MESSAGE
Kara Swisher is the host of the New York Times podcast “Sway” and a columnist for the paper. (Getty Images)
The progressive lawmaker countered Republicans’ assertion that they are censored on social media by pointing out the top post from Facebook often come from conservatives.
“We get totally out campaigned on social media. So we shouldn’t just accept arguments that are just factually false,” Khanna said. “That said, if the Republicans want protections to make sure that you don’t have viewpoint censorship, I’m fine with that. I mean, I don’t think that these platforms should be engaged in discrimination based on viewpoint, and if that’s part of a bargain in legislation, fine.”
Twitter suspended the account for the satirical site the Babylon Bee on Sunday after they posted a joke naming Biden administration official Dr. Rachel Levine the satire site’s “Man of the Year” for 2022. Levine, the U.S. Assistant Secretary of Health, is a transgender woman. Twitter accused the satirical site of violating its rules against “hateful conduct.”
“We don’t believe speaking the truth is hate speech,” Babylon Bee CEO Seth Dillon told Fox News Digital. “Satire often does speak the truth… we stand by the point we were making in that article.”
Tech companies like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube deplatformed former President Trump when he was still in office.
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Later in the podcast, Khanna argued that social media companies should do more to limit free speech online.
“I do think, though, the danger when you get some of the hate speech on places like Facebook and Twitter, and you have no standards, is that it starts to affect people who are susceptible to it, who could be productive citizens, and you start to have the mainstreaming of that,” Khanna said. “Social media companies have an ethical responsibility to have some standards against blatant hate speech and blatant misinformation.”
Khanna didn’t specify what he classifies as “blatant hate speech” or “blatant misinformation.”