• Democrat Gabbard Joins Disgruntled Conservatives Going After Google

    Surge Summary: Democratic presidential candidate Tulsi Gabbard accuses Google of censoring her compaign — joining many conservatives in incriminating the tech giant.

    So, looks like it’s not just conservatives or even Republicans who are claiming to have been stung by Google’s leftist maneuverings …

    The New York Times is reporting Hawaii’s Democratic Representative Tulsi Gabbard, also a long-shot candidate for 2020’s Democratic presidential nomination, has filed suit against Google: she claims the tech behemoth censored her campaign’s advertising account. (Jack Crowe/National Review)

    Filed in federal court Thursday in Los Angeles,  the lawsuit claims Google unlawfully censored Gabbard’s campaign by temporarily suspending its advertising account June 27 and 28. The campaign is charging this act deprived it of donations during a key period following the first Democratic primary debate.

    This is particularly troubling for the thirty-eight-year-old lawmaker because she led the Democratic field in search results on the heels of the debate where she performed as a bit of a standout on a packed stage.

    “Google’s arbitrary and capricious treatment of Gabbard’s campaign should raise concerns for policymakers everywhere about the company’s ability to use its dominance to impact political discourse, in a way that interferes with the upcoming 2020 presidential election,” the lawsuit said.

    As with any assault on anyone’s free speech rights, this accusation should be regarded with utmost seriousness by people of principle, regardless of political or ideological affiliation. It casts doubt on the trustworthiness of Google across-the-board.

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    Gabbard’s campaign is seeking an injunction to prevent Google from suspending its advertising account again as well as $50 million in damages. She is the first presidential candidate to ever sue a large tech firm.

    A Google spokesman answered the Times that Gabbard’s advertising account likely caught the attention of the company’s algorithm for unusual activity.

    “In this case, our system triggered a suspension and the account was reinstated shortly thereafter,” Google spokesman Jose Castaneda said. “We are proud to offer ad products that help campaigns connect directly with voters, and we do so without bias toward any party or political ideology.”

    Curiously, the four-term Democratic congresswoman is part of a movement which is fueled by ample conservative and Republican suspicion toward Google’s operation.

    Gabbard has joined a growing bipartisan cohort of tech-skeptical lawmakers eager to combat what they see as Silicon Valley firms’ ideological censorship and privacy invasion.

    “Google’s discriminatory actions against my campaign are reflective of how dangerous their complete dominance over internet search is, and how the increasing dominance of big tech companies over our public discourse threatens our core American values,” Gabbard said in a statement. “This is a threat to free speech, fair elections, and to our democracy, and I intend to fight back on behalf of all Americans.”

    For sure, from those eager to see Google, et al, put aside whatever partisan biases they might be entertaining and serve as honest social-media brokers, Gabbard — at least on this score — deserves a spirited “Attaboy!”.

    Or “Attagirl!”

    (You get the point.)

    Image: photo credit: Gage Skidmore <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/22007612@N05/48011612156″>Tulsi Gabbard</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/”>(license)</a>

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