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Judicial Watch, Inc. is a conservative, non-partisan educational foundation, which promotes transparency, accountability and integrity in government, politics and the law.

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Court Hearing Set for Lawsuit over California Sec of State’s Censorship of Judicial Watch YouTube Election Integrity Video Just Before 2020 Election

Updated 5/9/23 to reflect time change by the court.

(Washington, DC) – Judicial Watch today announced that District Court Judge Maame Ewusi-Mensah Frimpong will hold a hearing on Thursday, May 11, 2023, at 10:00 a.m. PT on a Motion to Dismiss brought by the California Secretary of State in the lawsuit Judicial Watch, Inc. v. Shirley Weber, in her official capacity as Secretary of State of the State of California (No. 2:22-cv-06894)

Date: Thursday, May 11, 2023Time: 9:00 a.m. PT (12 p.m. ET)
Location: U.S. District Court, Central District of California Western Division,
350 W 1st Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012,
Courtroom 8B, Eighth Floor

The lawsuit states that the California Office of Elections Cybersecurity, which Secretary of State Shirley Weber oversees, unlawfully caused YouTube to remove Judicial Watch’s election integrity video on September 25, 2020. Specifically, Judicial Watch lawyers argue that the California Secretary of State violated Judicial Watch’s First Amendment right by:

misus[ing] her authority under [California Election Code Sec. 10.5] with the intention to interfere with [Judicial Watch’s] speech by monitoring [its] speech on social media, falsely assessing [its] speech as misleading, ignoring an express limitation on her authority while giving an overly broad interpretation to other authority, and using her close working relationship with and “dedicated pathways” at YouTube to have [Judicial Watch’s] video removed within approximately 24 hours.

At the time the complaint against Weber was filed, Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton said, “Smoking gun documents show California government officials, who were being advised by the Biden campaign PR operation, caused YouTube to censor a key Judicial Watch video just before the 2020 election. This egregious government censorship and election interference violated Judicial Watch’s civil rights, and our lawsuit aims to stop and expose the growing corruption of leftist government officials colluding with Big Tech allies to attack the free speech rights of Americans.”

“California government officials don’t have the right to censor any American, especially on sensitive election integrity debates just before a presidential election. California’s censorship of Judicial Watch is a violation of the First Amendment, pure and simple,” stated Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton.

Through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and other direct litigation, Judicial Watch continues to investigate and litigate the broad range of censorship being conducted by the Biden administration and its fellow travelers within state and local governments.

On February 28 of this year, Judicial Watch filed a FOIA lawsuit against the U.S. Department Homeland Security (DHS) for records showing collusion between federal agencies and social media to censor and suppress free speech (Judicial Watch, Inc. v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security(No. 1:23-cv-00552)).

Also in February 2023, Judicial Watch filed a FOIA lawsuit against DHS for records of communication related to the work of the Election Integrity Partnership (EIP) that could detail coordinated censorship activities (Judicial Watch, Inc. v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security (No. 1:23-cv-00384)). “Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton explained why the lawsuit was filed: “The Elon Musk ‘Twitter Files’ are the tip of the iceberg, as the federal government ran a massive, secret censorship op against the American people. That the DHS is hiding these censorship records in violation of FOIA law shows the agency still has something to hide.”

On January 13, 2023, Judicial Watch filed a FOIA lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) for communications and records of the Surgeon General’s Communications Director’s contact with social media companies regarding COVID-19 vaccines (Judicial Watch, Inc. v. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (No. 1:23-cv-00113)). At the time of the filing, Fitton said, “Biden’s Surgeon General is abusing his office to pressure Big Tech companies to censor Americans. This lawsuit aims to uncover the details of this government attack on the First Amendment.”

On January 11, 2023, Judicial Watch filed a FOIA lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) for records of communications between the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and social media sites regarding foreign influence in elections, as well as the Hunter Biden laptop story (Judicial Watch Inc. v U.S. Department of Justice (No. 1:23-cv-00079)). Fitton commented, “The FBI was literally paying Twitter to censor Americans just before the 2020 election! The FBI seems to have interfered in the 2020 election to help Joe Biden by encouraging Big Tech to censor Americans about the Hunter Biden laptop and other debates. And to add to the scandal, they are now covering up their misconduct.”

In November 2022, Judicial Watch is sued the DHS for all records of communications between the Cybersecurity and Information Security Agency (CISA), a division of DHS, and the Election Integrity Partnership (EIP), which was created to flag online election content for censorship and suppression.

In May 2022, YouTube censored a Judicial Watch video about Biden corruption and election integrity issues in the 2020 election. The video, titled “Impeach? Biden Corruption Threatens National Security,” was falsely determined to be “election misinformation” and removed by YouTube, and Judicial Watch’s YouTube account was suspended for a week. The video featured an interview of Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. Judicial Watch continues to post its video content on its Rumble channel (https://rumble.com/vz7aof-fitton-impeach-biden-corruption-threatens-national-security.html).

In July 2021, Judicial Watch uncovered records from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which revealed that Facebook coordinated closely with the CDC to control the COVID narrative and “misinformation” and that over $3.5 million in free advertising given to the CDC by social media companies.

In May 2021, Judicial Watch revealed documents showing that Iowa state officials pressured social media companies Twitter and Facebook to censor posts about the 2020 election.

In April 2021, Judicial Watch published documents revealing how California state officials pressured social media companies (Twitter, Facebook, Google (YouTube)) to censor posts about the 2020 election.

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