Fox & Friends hosted House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) this morning to preview a meeting he reportedly will have with Facebook officials, along with Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel and Trump campaign manager Brad Parscale, to push the false and harmful claim that Facebook and other social media platforms are censorsing and targeting conservatives. Both McDaniel and Parscale have previously appeared on the show to push the lie.
The claim -- which has been pushed widely in right-wing media, particularly by the YouTube figures Diamond and Silk -- has been debunked, with studies from NewsWhip showing no systematic targeting of conservatives on Facebook. Rather, users across the political spectrum have seen their Facebook page views decline since the platform rolled out algorithm changes in January. Conservatives pushed the same claim in 2016, and it played a major role in allowing fake news and misinformation to spread on the platform.
Nonetheless, the false claim and conservatives’ efforts to game the refs spurred a congressional hearing on the topic and a Facebook review -- led by a former Republican senator -- of supposed anti-conservative bias on the platform. Fox contributor and European Parliament member Nigel Farage even brought up the claim during the body’s May meeting with Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.
From the June 15 edition of Fox News’ Fox & Friends:
BRIAN KILMEADE (CO-HOST): Facebook, other social media outlets, and censorship. We have Diamond and Silk, famously they're really concerned that nothing has changed. What do you know?
HOUSE MAJORITY LEADER KEVIN MCCARTHY (R-CA): Well, they have to stop the bias. So today I'm having a meeting -- Facebook is coming in to meet with the chairman of the Trump campaign, Brad Parscale, the chairman of the RNC, [Ronna McDaniel], and myself, because if you look at what has transpired -- one, Google, right before the election in California, if you Googled the California Republican Party, they said our ideology was Nazism. Not the party of Lincoln. Not the party of Reagan.
MCCARTHY: You watched what happened to Donald Trump Jr. on Instagram. If you searched his name, they gave you a warning that this was a site that could even cause death. And then you watch what Amazon has done to charity giving, to stop for the Alliance Defending Freedom. They said that they were an organization that was a hate group, even though they just won a Supreme Court case seven to two for the baker in Colorado. This stuff has got to stop of what they're doing to conservatives and the conservative voice.
KILMEADE: Right. Hopefully you'll make some progress today. It's not fair for anyone on any side.