The Wisconsin Republican claimed a satirical tweet is 'voter suppression' — and then shared it with the world.
In a Senate hearing on Wednesday, Republican Ron Johnson questioned heads of social media companies who have taken down or restricted access to Donald Trump's tweets for spreading misinformation.However, in the process, Johnson bizarrely ended up bringing attention to a satirical tweet that mentioned him strangling a dog.
The moment happened when Johnson asked Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey about blocking misinformation on civic integrity and used this satirical tweet that Twitter did not remove as an example of misinformation that should have been removed.
Here is the exchange Johnson had with Dorsey:
Mr. Dorsey, you talked about your policies toward misinformation and that you will block misinformation if it's about civic integrity, election interference or voter suppression.
Let me give you a tweet that was put up on Twitter.
It says, 'Senator Ron Johnson is my neighbor and strangled our dog, Buttons, right in front of my 4-year-old son and 3-year-old daughter. The police refused to investigate. This is a complete lie but important to retreat and note there are more of my lies to come.'
Now, we contacted Twitter and we asked them to take it down. Here's the response:
'Thanks for reaching out. We escalated this to our support team for their review and they have determined that this is not a violation of our policies.'
So, Mr. Dorsey, how could a complete lie, it's a lie, how does that not affect civic integrity? How could you view that as not being a matter of election interference? That could definitely impact my ability to get reelected. How could that not be a matter of voter suppression?
Obviously if people think i'm strangling my neighbor's dog they may not show up at the polls. That would be voter suppression.
By the way, that tweet was retweeted 17,000 times and viewed by — and loved, commented, appreciated by — over 50,000 people.
How is that not voter suppression, how is that not election interference, how is that not affecting civic integrity integrity?
Dorsey told Johnson that Twitter would "look into our enforcement or non-enforcement in this case and get back to you."
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.