September 18, 2020

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Kamala Harris’s Former Press Secretary Is the Face of Twitter Censorship

Aug 15, 2020 | , , ,

When CNN hired Sarah Isgur, a former Jeff Sessions spokeswoman and now staff writer at The Dispatch, last year to be a political editor at its Washington bureau, left-wing media types put on a full-court press to smear her professionalism. The CNN newsroom — which, last I looked, included former Obama official Jim Sciutto — was reportedly “demoralized” by her very presence. Conservatives, and it’s probably fair to say that Isgur is a pretty moderate one, aren’t welcome in mainstream journalism. We don’t need to go through all the numbers and polls to stress this point. Journalists have long jumped back and forth between Democratic Party politics and media gigs. The job is the same. The venue is different.

I bring this up because, as my former colleague Sean Davis points out, Nick Pacilio, Kamala Harris’s former press secretary, is now in charge of deciding announcing what the president of the United States can and can’t say on Twitter to his 85 million followers. Twitter has already removed debatable contentions by the president — or, contentions no more misleading than any number of Joe Biden allegations. The point of removing tweets, I assume, has more to do with being able to call  Trump a liar than worrying about his spreading misleading information.

But the optics are remarkably terrible for Twitter. It’s almost certainly true that whoever holds the job of senior communication manager at the social-media giant will be ideologically progressive like the company’s CEO. But could you imagine what the nightly reaction on CNN and MSNBC would be if Mike Pence’s former spokesperson was seen censoring Joe Biden’s tweets during a presidential election? I have no doubt Democrats would be calling for congressional hearings.

*Twitter says Pacilio isn’t involved in the removal decisions himself. I have updated the post to reflect his role — though Pacilio’s definitive tweets give users no clue as to how the process plays out or who makes these decisions. I don’t think the optics are any better for Twitter, but I should have been more careful.

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