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May 6, 2022

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Attorney General Steve Marshall Calls on Biden to Stop His “Orwellian” Free
Speech Attack Against Americans

(MONTGOMERY) – Attorney General Steve Marshall called on President Biden to immediately halt his administration’s planned “Orwellian” censorship board to suppress Americans’ constitutional right to criticize their government. Attorney General Marshall joined 19 other attorneys general in writing a letter on May 5, 2022, demanding that Biden’s so-called Disinformation Governance Board, which would directly violate the First Amendment, be scrapped.

“The Biden administration’s plans to set up a government board to decide whether Americans’ speech is either ‘disinformation’ or ‘misinformation’ is an unacceptable and downright alarming encroachment on every citizen’s right to express his or her opinions, engage in political debate, and disagree with the government,” said Attorney General Marshall.

“Biden’s latest effort to decide which speech is ‘acceptable’ and ‘orthodox’ combines McCarthyite speech policing with the secrecy of the English Star Chamber. In short, he seems to have misunderstood George Orwell: the ‘Ministry of Truth’ described in 1984 was intended as a warning against the dangers of socialism, not as a model government agency. ‘MiniTru’ and its thuggish apparatchiks are the villains in that story, not the heroes.”

As Attorney General Marshall and his fellow attorneys general point out in their letter, the timing of the Disinformation Governance Board’s creation is also highly suspect.

“By its own admission, the Biden administration has been ‘flagging problematic posts’ on social media and coordinating with the private sector to regulate Americans’ free speech. The President of the United States publicly urged social media companies to police ‘misinformation and disinformation’ on their platforms. Suddenly just as Elon Musk prepares to acquire Twitter with the stated purpose of correcting the platform’s censorship of free speech, you announced the creation of the Disinformation Governance Board.”

Marshall and the other attorneys general also point out the folly of Biden’s appointee to head his new censorship board is no stranger herself to fomenting disinformation. “Ms. Jankowicz – the self-styled ‘Mary Poppins of disinformation’ – is like so many who complain about misinformation and disinformation: she is often in error but never in doubt. She has previously
suggested news that Hunter Biden’s laptop had been compromised was the product of a foreign disinformation campaign. She asserted that the theory of tracing COVID-19 to a lab leak in China was invented because it was ‘politically convenient for Trump,’ although the intelligence community now assesses that this theory may very well be correct. She has even praised Christopher Steele, the discredited author of the infamous false ‘dossier’ about President Trump, and one of the most notable peddlers of disinformation in recent memory. It would be amusing that a self-proclaimed expert in disinformation like Ms. Jankowicz has proven to be so bad at identifying it, except that you have placed her in charge of doing so on behalf of the United States government.”

“The Disinformation Governance Board, by its very existence, and almost certainly by design, threatens to ‘enforce silence’ when Americans wish to express views disfavored by the Administration.” “This is unconstitutional, illegal, and un-American. Unless you turn back now and disband this Orwellian Disinformation Governance Board immediately, the undersigned will have no choice but to consider judicial remedies to protect the rights of their citizens.”

Attorney General Marshall joined attorneys general from Virginia, Arkansas, Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Texas, Utah, and West Virginia in writing the letter to the Biden administration.

You may read the attorneys general letter here.

[For hyperlink, click PDF icon at upper right side of press release]