During a House Committee hearing, Rep. Bill Johnson warned that Democrat efforts to censor conservative media are “eerily similar” to communist China.
This statement comes after a recent move from China’s Communist regime banning BBC World News from appearing anywhere in the country. China said the broadcast company didn’t uphold the values the country demands for media, such as “truth, fairness and upholding China’s national interests.”
“I am seriously concerned and blown away by my colleagues in the Democratic Party for sending a letter to broadcasters questioning their decision to host conservative media — a letter that looks eerily similar to the decisions made in Communist China,” the congressman added.
“Does the government have the right, the ability, to determine what is broadcasted to the American people? Democrats here on these committee believe it should have the right.”
The congressman went on to ask George Washington University Law School professor Turley if it is “lawful for members of congress to make demands of private businesses that they cannot make themselves constitutionally.”
Professor Turley agreed that the Democrats’ behavior is in fact a violation of Free Speech:
“Well, it’s constitutional in the sense that it isn’t expressly prohibited by the First Amendment. But it is a blatant attack on free speech” said Turley.
Turley admonished the American people by saying, “We should be concerned when Congress is pushing private companies to do what they cannot do directly.”
The professor continued:
This creates what is referred to as the “little brother problem.” We have avoided an official state media, and we have a pretty good system to deal with “big brother.” But in the last few years we’ve seen companies like Twitter and Facebook seriously impacting American’s right to free speech. Even Vladimir Putin is calling out these companies for their attack on democratic institutions. This is one of the most authoritarian figures in the world. He obviously cares not about democratic institutions, but has seemed to signal an area of respect where he knows his authority can not penetrate.
Rep. Johnson noted the bias lawmakers on the other side of the aisle have toward Big Tech companies given their ability to censor conservative voices without any legal blowback.