A Louisiana judge ordered the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to release files that could reveal five agents’ alleged involvement in government efforts to suppress social media content deemed to contain “misinformation” about elections, court documents show.
Missouri Attorney General Andrew Bailey and Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry moved to release testimony from Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) employees Chad Josiah, Rob Schaul, Alex Zaheer, John Stafford and Pierce Lowary, after learning of their participation in the Biden administration’s counter-“disinformation” efforts, court documents dated Jan. 19 show. The judge’s motion Wednesday could shed light on a “switchboarding” tactic employed during the 2020 election, according to the order.
The lawsuit alleges that the defendants, which include the named individuals as well as President Joe Biden and top officials from a variety of federal agencies, “colluded and/or coerced social media companies to suppress disfavored speakers, viewpoints, and content on social media platforms by labeling the content “dis-information,” “mis-information,” and “mal-formation.”
The five CISA employees allegedly served as a “switchboard” to route requests from federal agencies to censor disinformation to various social media companies, according to the documents.
Switchboard work employed “an audit official to identify something on social media they deemed to be disinformation aimed at their jurisdiction,” top CISA election security agent Brian Skully testified in a deposition released Thursday. “They could forward that to CISA and CISA would share that with the appropriate social media companies.”