FBI agent Laura Dehmlow, who coordinated with Facebook to quash the Hunter Biden laptop story during the 2020 Election, is now advising the Biden Administration on its campaign to combat disinformation and misinformation on social media.
As The Intercept revealed on Monday, the Department of Homeland Security “is quietly broadening its efforts to curb speech it considers dangerous.” Back in August, the Biden Administration shuttered its Disinformation Governance Board after increasing public backlash to the “Ministry of Truth,” as many critics referred to the body. This was supposed to be the nail in the coffin for government efforts to combat disinformation. However, The Intercept has detailed the continued efforts, primarily centered on the Department of Homeland Security, to ensure that the mission of the Disinformation Governance Board lives on.
One of the key advisors in that effort is FBI agent Laura Dehmlow. In a March meeting that brought together executives from Twitter, JP Morgan, and the University of Washington with government officials, Agent Dehmlow was particularly concerned about disinformation undermining trust in the government. This meeting was part of an ongoing process to bring the government agencies and private sector companies closer together to combat disinformation.
Yet, there is a key problem: the government does not have a clear definition of disinformation. This creates a significant opportunity for decisionmakers to be influenced by political motivations. In fact, agent Dehmlow is implicated in this very charge.
Earlier this month, the Daily Caller reported that FBI agent Dehmlow, the Foreign Influence Task Force unit chief, not only is an active Democratic donor, but was also involved in conversations between the FBI and Facebook before the social media company decided to suppress the Hunter Biden laptop story during the 2020 Election.
Looking back, Facebook and Twitter—two of the largest social media companies—both suppressed the Hunter Biden laptop story weeks before the 2020 Presidential Election, being falsely labeled as Russian disinformation. We have no way of knowing how this affected the outcome of the election, but we do know that Dehmlow, an FBI official, used her role in government to affect this decision.
In the earlier referenced March meeting, agent Dehmlow said that “we need a media infrastructure that is held accountable.” This begs the question, if an active FBI agent was in charge of censorship efforts, who would be there to keep them accountable?