Rep. Jordan Launches Investigation into DHS's Proposed Use of Third-Party Firms to Spy on Americans

Posted: Aug 19, 2021 8:30 PM
Rep. Jordan Launches Investigation into DHS's Proposed Use of Third-Party Firms to Spy on Americans

Source: Tom Williams/Pool via AP

On Wednesday, Ohio Congressman Jim Jordan (R) announced he is launching an investigation into the Department of Homeland Security's use of third-party firms to spy on American citizens.

In a letter to DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, Jordan noted that recent reports stated that that Department intends to use third-party contractors "to spy on the social media communications of American citizens for signs of 'extremist' threats." The report Jordan is referring to is likely the Wall Street Journal report, published Sunday, that detailed how this initiative came forth as a result of the events of January 6.

"DHS's use of private companies – including social media platforms – to spy on online communications would have serious consequences for the civil liberties of all Americans," the letter reads. "This initiative is even more dangerous when viewed in the context of DHS's prior targeting of American citizens for holding benign political opinions."

Some of the "benign" opinions included in the letter are supporting the Second Amendment and immigration laws.

"Although the reports indicate that DHS intends to monitor 'extremist' threats, the Departments has a history of targeting Americans for holding 'suspicious views,' such as being pro-Second Amendment, favoring lower levels of immigration, or opposing the use of force by police."

In the letter, Jordan blasted the Biden administration's role in disregarding American's civil liberties, specifically, freedom of speech on social media.

"Unfortunately, DHS's reported initiative is just the latest example of the Biden Administration's continued disregard for American civil liberties. Last month, the Biden White House acknowledged that the Administration has been colluding with tech giant Facebook to target and remove disfavored speech online. Now it appears that the Biden Administration wants to expand its collaboration with Big Tech," the letter states.

The letter concludes with a request made from Jordan to Mayorkas, demanding documents, briefings, and other communications pertaining to DHS monitoring American's online activity.