The Biden campaign intensifies its criticism of Facebook

The Biden campaign ramped up...

Posted: Oct 20, 2019 6:53 AM

The Biden campaign ramped up its criticism of Facebook in a second letter to the social media giant, calling for the platform to reject another false anti-Joe Biden ad.

In Thursday's letter, Biden campaign manager Greg Schultz blasted Facebook for what he called a "deeply flawed" policy, saying it gives "blanket permission" for candidates to use the platform to "mislead American voters all while Facebook profits from their advertising dollars." The ad was paid for by a political action committee called The Committee to Defend the President.

Schultz wrote that the campaign will continue to mount challenges, saying, "In the coming days and weeks, Facebook will be hearing from us about these concerns, which are shared by countless other candidates, citizens, and organizations that prioritize the health of American democracy."

In an email obtained by CNN from Facebook's head of global elections policy, Katie Harbath, Facebook replied that the ad in question is not currently active on the platform.

"The ad you wrote us about is currently inactive on our platform and is not running. Should it become active it would then be sent to third party fact checkers where they would have the option to review it," Harbath said.

The New York Times first reported the letter and Facebook's response.

The ad, which is now inactive, accuses the 2020 Democratic presidential candidate of "blackmailing" US allies, alleging impropriety while he was vice president and his son Hunter served on the board of a Ukrainian energy company. There is no evidence of wrongdoing by Joe or Hunter Biden. The ad ends with the narrator saying, "Send Quid Pro Joe Biden into retirement."

The Biden campaign sent the letter the same day Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg delivered a speech at Georgetown University defending free speech. That day, the campaign also released a statement in which it called Facebook "unprepared" for this "unique moment in our history and how little it has learned over the past few years."

This is the second letter the campaign has sent to the platform asking it to reject the false anti-Biden ad. Facebook rejected the first request, leaving itself open to criticism not only from the former vice president, but from another 2020 Democratic hopeful -- Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren.

Warren recently ran a false ad on Facebook deliberately to draw attention to the issue. Facebook then tweeted at Warren that the "FCC doesn't want broadcast companies censoring candidates' speech." It continued, "We agree it's better to let voters -- not companies -- decide."

This prompted Warren to fire back: "You're making my point here," she tweeted. "It's up to you whether you take money to promote lies."

Under current policy, Facebook exempts ads by politicians from third-party fact-checking -- a loophole, both Biden and Warren allege, that allows Zuckerberg to continue taking money from President Donald Trump's campaign and its supporters despite Trump's ads spreading lies about Biden and his son. While it allows politicians to run ads with false information, its policy does not allow PACs to do so. Facebook does not fact check ads from PACS before they run on the platform.

Trump's efforts to pursue unfounded claims about the Bidens are at the center of the impeachment inquiry he currently faces.

Terre Haute
Clear
90° wxIcon
Hi: 92° Lo: 72°
Feels Like: 95°
Robinson
Clear
88° wxIcon
Hi: 89° Lo: 70°
Feels Like: 95°
Indianapolis
Few Clouds
88° wxIcon
Hi: 91° Lo: 73°
Feels Like: 93°
Rockville
Clear
85° wxIcon
Hi: 90° Lo: 72°
Feels Like: 88°
Casey
Scattered Clouds
88° wxIcon
Hi: 90° Lo: 72°
Feels Like: 98°
Brazil
Clear
90° wxIcon
Hi: 91° Lo: 72°
Feels Like: 95°
Marshall
Clear
90° wxIcon
Hi: 90° Lo: 71°
Feels Like: 95°
Hot, humid, and stormy.
WTHI Planner
WTHI Temps
WTHI Radar

WTHI Events

 

Illinois Coronavirus Cases

(Widget updates once daily at 7 p.m. CT)

Confirmed Cases: 150554

Reported Deaths: 7309
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Cook934964664
Lake10104427
DuPage9454480
Kane7949280
Will7061322
Winnebago3131101
McHenry2179100
St. Clair2089143
Kankakee133565
Unassigned1170210
Rock Island109430
Madison107770
Kendall101122
Champaign99217
Boone62321
DeKalb59520
Peoria58329
Sangamon47333
Jackson34319
McLean29214
Randolph2917
Stephenson2806
Ogle2794
Clinton24417
Macon24122
LaSalle23717
Whiteside19915
Union19519
Grundy1855
Coles18417
Iroquois1685
Tazewell1588
Knox1490
Warren1470
Monroe14113
Adams1391
Cass1367
Williamson1344
Morgan1323
Jefferson11117
Lee1042
McDonough10415
Henry1031
Vermilion822
Pulaski790
Marion730
Macoupin613
Montgomery591
Perry591
Douglas540
Livingston532
Jo Daviess491
Christian474
Jasper477
Ford411
Woodford392
Jersey371
Franklin360
Bureau312
Menard260
Mercer250
Washington250
Cumberland240
Fayette243
Mason230
Wabash230
Alexander220
Carroll212
Johnson210
Piatt200
Effingham191
Hancock191
Moultrie190
Shelby191
Clark180
Crawford180
Logan180
Bond171
De Witt160
Edgar160
Fulton160
Massac150
Wayne151
Schuyler130
Marshall120
Brown100
Saline100
White90
Greene80
Henderson80
Lawrence80
Richland70
Hamilton60
Stark60
Pike50
Gallatin40
Clay20
Edwards20
Calhoun10
Hardin10
Out of IL10
Pope10
Putnam10
Scott10

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

(Widget updates once daily at 8 p.m. ET)

Confirmed Cases: 49063

Reported Deaths: 2732
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Marion11760689
Lake5276246
Elkhart340255
Allen2835133
St. Joseph200169
Cass16429
Hamilton1608101
Hendricks1425100
Johnson1296118
Porter76738
Tippecanoe7359
Clark66844
Madison66764
Bartholomew59145
Vanderburgh5876
LaPorte58326
Howard58058
Kosciusko5624
Marshall5016
Noble48528
LaGrange4779
Jackson4733
Boone45443
Delaware45252
Hancock45236
Shelby43125
Floyd38444
Morgan32731
Monroe30928
Montgomery29720
Grant29626
Clinton2902
Dubois2886
Henry28216
White26610
Decatur25432
Lawrence24825
Dearborn23823
Vigo2388
Warrick22729
Harrison21622
Greene19032
Miami1862
Jennings17712
Putnam1708
DeKalb1634
Scott1628
Daviess14817
Wayne1436
Orange13623
Perry1359
Steuben1302
Franklin1268
Ripley1247
Jasper1232
Wabash1142
Carroll1102
Fayette1037
Newton9910
Gibson982
Whitley975
Starke943
Randolph804
Huntington782
Jefferson762
Wells751
Fulton721
Jay680
Washington671
Pulaski661
Knox640
Clay604
Rush583
Owen501
Adams491
Benton480
Posey450
Sullivan451
Spencer441
Brown421
Blackford392
Crawford320
Fountain322
Tipton311
Switzerland280
Parke240
Martin220
Ohio180
Vermillion140
Warren141
Union130
Pike110
Unassigned0193