Florida governor Ron DeSantis ordered his secretary of state to investigate Facebook for “alleged election interference.”
The move comes in the wake of a report in The Wall Street Journal, showing that “the tech giant put its thumb on the scale of numerous state and local races by exempting elite users from Facebook’s own rules,” according to a Monday statement from DeSantis.
In a Sept. 27 letter, DeSantis directed Florida Secretary of State Laurel M. Lee to investigate Facebook’s alleged failures to comply with Florida’s election laws.
The alleged violations create a “privileged class of speakers” who are empowered to exert influence on elections, DeSantis said.
“While most people are subject to arbitrary censorship at the whims of so-called fact-checkers, Facebook grants select users the freedom to disregard the platform’s own community standards without the threat of enforcement action,” DeSantis wrote, citing the Wall Street Journal report.
If the report is true, DeSantis said, Facebook violated Florida law, and must be held accountable.
“The thought of Facebook clandestinely manipulating elections is an affront to the basic principles of our republic,” DeSantis wrote. “We the people have the right to choose our representatives, whether or not Silicon Valley approves.”