DeSantis: Disinformation Board Should Be ‘Totally Dismantled’ After Docs Say Board Planned Coordination with Social Media Companies

June 10, 2022 Updated 3:31 PM ET

Governor-elect Ron DeSantis speaking with attendees at the 2018 Student Action Summit hosted by Turning Point USA at the Palm Beach County Convention Center in West Palm Beach, Florida. (Gage Skidmore).
Governor-elect Ron DeSantis speaking with attendees at the 2018 Student Action Summit hosted by Turning Point USA at the Palm Beach County Convention Center in West Palm Beach, Florida. (Gage Skidmore).

June 10, 2022 Updated 3:31 P.M. ET

FORT WALTON BEACH (FLV) – Gov. Ron DeSantis said Thursday that the Department of Homeland Security’s disinformation board needs to be “totally dismantled” after two Republican Senators released documents saying the board had planned to coordinate with social media companies to remove content.

“It’s not that the government is going to come in and not let you speak directly,” DeSantis said. “What they’re going to do is they’re going to subcontract out the censorship to these big tech companies.”

Republican Senators Chuck Grassley and Josh Hawley released documents showing the disinformation board would coordinate with social media companies to remove user content. 

“The First Amendment of the Constitution was designed precisely so that the government could not censor opposing viewpoints – even if those viewpoints were false. DHS should not in any way seek to enlist the private sector to curb or silence opposing viewpoints,” the senators wrote in a letter to DHS Secretary Alejandro Majorkas.

DHS officials had said the board was created to prevent the spread of disinformation but it was put on pause after backlash from the public concerned about first amendment rights. The Washington Post broke the story and said the board is on pause due to “coordinated online attacks.”

“I do not want government telling me what is right, appropriate information and disinformation,” DeSantis. “Because, you know, this regime spreads more disinformation than anybody about a whole host of different issues and so all they’re trying to do is stifle dissent.”

Attorney General Ashley Moody Signs Letter Urging End to ‘Alarming’ Biden Disinformation board

Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody signed onto a letter in May urging the end of the disinformation board. 

“This 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,” the letter said. 

Governor DeSantis had also implemented a law that aims to hold Big Tech accountable. The first-of-its-kind law would have instituted legal penalties for social media companies who deplatform Floridians without reason.

DeSantis Office ‘Disappointed’ After Court’s Big Tech Law Ruling, ‘Reviewing’ Options for Appeal

However, the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in May that major parts of Florida’s Big Tech censorship law are “unconstitutional.”

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