(Daily Caller) Judicial Watch, a conservative watchdog group, filed a lawsuit against the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) on Nov. 22 after it failed to complete a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request into communication records regarding alleged online censorship during the 2020 presidential election.
The watchdog group was seeking communications between the Cybersecurity and Information Security Agency (CISA), a DHS subdivision, and the Election Integrity Partnership (EIP), an “information exchange” between researchers, election officials and government agencies established in 2020 to identify and research online misinformation leading up to elections that flagged social media posts for platforms to address. Judicial Watch demanded that the Washington D.C. District Court order the DHS to acknowledge the Oct. 5 FOIA request and “produce… non-exempt records responsive to the requests,” according to the lawsuit.
“We’ve had these disclosures essentially over the last year that federal agencies, especially DHS, hav been working to censor Americans… either directly or indirectly,” Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton told the Daily Caller News Foundation.
Through the EIP, multiple groups, including CISA and liberal groups such as the Democratic National Committee and the NAACP, could file “tickets” reporting potential election misinformation, which EIP would then forward on to social media platforms after an investigation into the claims. The EIP released a 2021 report detailing its efforts to address misinformation in the 2020 election in which it acknowledged it had shared hundreds of posts with online platforms, with “35% of the URLs we shared with Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, TikTok, and YouTube […] either labeled, removed, or soft blocked.”
“This lawsuit’s designed to get into that. There’s these federal frauds that colluded to come up with a system of censorship for social media, and it looks like this [Department of Homeland Security] agency participated in it and we want to figure out what was going on,” Fitton said.
BREAKING: Judicial Watch filed a lawsuit against the DHS for all records of comms between the CISA, a division of DHS, and the EIP, which was created to flag online election content for censorship and suppression (1/3). https://t.co/xlJLtr8llL
— Judicial Watch ⚖️ (@JudicialWatch) November 30, 2022