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The Tangled Web of CISA, FBI, and Big Tech “Disinformation” Talks Ahead of Election Showdown

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Senate Intelligence Committee chair Mark Warner is seeking to justify Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) and FBI resuming their controversial, to say the least – and subject to legal scrutiny in a number of lawsuits – “talks” with social media companies.

What they are “discussing” is the removal of whatever’s labeled as “disinformation” and this resumption of collaboration, collusion, or communication – depending on who you ask – comes at a very sensitive time, some six months ahead of the US presidential election.

The Biden administration first “froze” this activity, apparently with the First Amendment case currently deliberated by the Supreme Court, Murthy v. Missouri, in mind. But now that decision has been reversed.

Senator Warner, a Democrat, seems to believe he has found an argument in favor of the resumption of the practice in the stance he attributes precisely to the Supreme Court.

Namely, Warner gave some timeline of the events, telling reporters at the RSA IT security conference that it coincided with a number of justices appearing to side with the government.

“There seemed to be a lot of sympathy that the government ought to have at least voluntary communications with (Big Tech firms),” he is quoted as saying.

And on the strength of this assumption, before the ruling is handed down, the agencies took advantage of the court approving temporary resumption and are once again able to “stay in touch,” as one report put it, with social media companies.

This is happening despite the hazardous nature of the move in terms of undermining trust in the electoral process and potentially creating further doubts and dissent down the road. But Warner in the past criticized US administration lawyers’ approach to the legal case as “too timid.”

Now, “disinformation” and the threat of “foreign interference” are at this point habitually quoted as the reason why “talks” should resume after about half a year.

However, Murthy v. Missouri alleges First Amendment violations of speech of Americans at the hands of their own government, which is believed to have pressured Big Tech to effectively carry out (unconstitutional) censorship on its behalf.

The targeted online speech in this case, originally brought by Missouri’s attorney general, addressed issues like 2020 election integrity and COVID-19 vaccines.

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