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Jen Psaki fails to squirm out of censorship deposition

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Former White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki’s motion to quash the subpoena to depose her in the lawsuit filed by Missouri and Louisiana was denied. The lawsuit alleges that the Biden administration colluded with social media companies to suppress certain viewpoints on Covid and elections.

When she was the White House Press Secretary, Psaki made statements encouraging social media companies to censor more content. At one time, she said, “We engage with (social media companies) regularly and they certainly understand what our asks are.”

The plaintiffs in the lawsuit want her deposed so that she can say who within the government was engaging with social media companies and what they said.

Psaki filed a motion to quash the subpoena in a federal court in Alexandria, Virginia. She was allowed to file the motion in a different state because that is where she lives. Her lawyers argued that she had little information to give and that most of the information is available through the emails and other documents that were obtained by the plaintiffs. They also argued that the deposition would be a burden to her.

US Magistrate Ivan Davis was not impressed by the arguments, but did not reject her request. Instead he referred the motion back to Louisiana, where the lawsuit was filed, because the judge there is more familiar with the case. Davis also refused to stay his ruling so that the motion could be appealed in a district court in Alexandria.

Davis said that Psaki had failed to demonstrate how being deposed in her home state qualifies as an undue burden. If indeed she has little information to offer, it should not be a burden, the judge argued.

“How much time does it take to prepare a witness for deposition when she doesn’t really have anything to say?” Davis asked.

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