Sen. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) said Wednesday that it would be extremely concerning if the U.S. government funded the foreign “data-driven advocacy organization,” the Global Disinformation Index (GDI), which she said is being used to target conservative media outlets.
“It would be extremely concerning if the US Government is indeed funding the Global Disinformation Index, which is being used to target conservative media outlets,” Blackburn wrote in reference to Daily Caller News Foundation’s report that GDI also receives taxpayer money from the U.S. State Department’s Global Engagement Center (GEC).
Blackburn, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, said, ironically, many of GDI’s most trusted websites often peddle disinformation.
“We’ve seen recently how the US government has tried to use the tech sector to control the narrative on many issues. Outlets such as the Huffington Post and BuzzFeed are among the biggest pushers of disinformation, yet are ranked as trustworthy by the index,” she continued.
We’ve seen recently how the US government has tried to use the tech sector to control the narrative on many issues. Outlets such as the Huffington Post and BuzzFeed are among the biggest pushers of disinformation, yet are ranked as very trustworthy by the index.
— Sen. Marsha Blackburn (@MarshaBlackburn) February 15, 2023
Sens. Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Ron Johnson (R-WI) are demanding an investigation into if the GEC and the National Endowment for Democracy, two State Department-backed groups, granted $665,000 to GDI.
Blackburn raised concerns about GDI and its potential funding from the U.S. government as Breitbart News, the Daily Caller News Foundation, and the Washington Examiner have highlighted how Microsoft’s ad network, Xandr, used GDI’s Dynamic Exclusion List to blacklist conservative media outlets. Xandr has reportedly removed, at least temporarily, the negative flags for conservative media.
Breitbart News revealed how Dr. Daniel Rogers, the cofounder and executive director of GDI, which is in part funded by George Soros’s Open Society Foundations, claimed supporters of former President Donald Trump cannot be deprogrammed from alleged disinformation.
Rogers also claimed that Breitbart News’s coverage of immigrant crime would lead to “anti-immigrant violence.” To Rogers, accurate news coverage is “violence.”
During the February 2022 discussion with Princeton University students, Rogers cited Breitbart News as one of his “favorites,” to describe those who spread adversarial narratives.
Sean Moran is a policy reporter for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter @SeanMoran3.