May 29, 2020
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Representative Adam Smith (D-Wash.) released the following statement today after President Trump signed an executive order targeting legal protections for social media companies:
“This executive order distorts the concept of free speech in a blatant attempt to coerce social media companies into moderating content in a way that benefits the President. This effort flies in the face of the principle of free speech upon which our nation was founded. The First Amendment is not, as the President would like to believe, a tool for the government to use to police speech and suppress opposition. There are many legitimate arguments about how and whether to regulate social media companies and online platforms, but the President cannot simply weaponize executive power because he is displeased by how a social media company responded to him spreading disinformation. This assault on freedom of expression is taken straight from the authoritarian playbook and only further proves this administration’s ceaseless corruption.
“As we mourn the loss of more than 100,000 Americans from COVID-19, this President is more focused on silencing his critics than guiding our country through one of the greatest challenges we have ever faced. Ultimately, this unlawful executive order is yet another attempt to distract the American people from President Trump’s failed leadership.”