Sen. Rubio Leading Charge to Stifle Big Tech-Government Censorship

July 14th, 2023 1:02 PM

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) is reintroducing legislation to stifle the federal government in its tracks from further secretly colluding with Silicon Valley giants to censor Americans’ speech. But does it go far enough?

In light of a preliminary injunction against Big Tech-government collusion, Rubio is zeroing in on efforts to dissuade the federal government from influencing social media platforms to censor American citizens. Rubio, along with other prominent senators, reintroduced the PRESERVE Online Speech Act.

The bill, which doesn’t outright ban Big Tech-Government censorship collusion, mandates that platforms disclose censorship requests from government officials. A July 13 press release stated that the intended goal is to “halt Big Tech and government censorship.”

Initially introduced in July 2021, the legislation would require Big Tech platforms to disclose within seven days any requests from any government, including foreign bodies. These companies would be slapped with $50,000 fines if they fail to comply. Funds taken from the fines would be directed to the FCC to provide internet to rural communities, the legislation text reads.

“If the government is working with Big Tech to censor freedom of speech, the American public deserves to know,” Rubio said in the press release. “Transparency is essential to protecting our First Amendment. That's why I'm introducing legislation to require the government to disclose any requests or pressure it makes to tech companies to censor speech.” Rubio was joined by Sens. Bill Hagerty (R-TN), Ron Johnson (R-WI) and Rick Scott (R-FL).

Hagerty, a staunch defender of the First Amendment, championed Rubio’s bill in the press release. “The American people deserve to know if their government is using big tech companies to end-run the First Amendment and censor speech,” Hagerty said. “I’m pleased to co-sponsor Senator Rubio’s legislation to require transparency and ensure that the government cannot work secretly to censor Americans.”

The Tennessee lawmaker’s remarks came a day after he held a press conference during which he promoted his own bill — the Disclose Government Censorship Act —seeking to provide transparency demands on potential collusion.

Echoing Hagerty’s remarks, Johnson targeted Big Tech’s role in the assault of the First Amendment. “We cannot allow Big Tech to continue to be a willing partner in the corruption of our institutions,” Johnson said before announcing his endorsement of Rubio’s bill. Scott similarly torched the federal government in his remarks. “The Biden administration has a track record of working hand-in-hand with big tech companies to censor conservatives and opinions they disagree with,” Scott said.

Conservatives are under attack. Contact your representative and demand that Big Tech be held to account to mirror the First Amendment while providing transparency, clarity on so-called “hate speech” and equal footing for conservatives. If you have been censored, contact us using CensorTrack’s contact form, and help us hold Big Tech accountable