It was a chilling plot. MSNBC anchor Rachel Maddow recently reported on leaked documents from the heterodox video platform Rumble detailing secret plans devised by former President Donald Trump to rig the 2024 election in collusion with rogue right-wing elements in the Department of Homeland Security and the Pentagon, with an assist from Elon Musk and a shadowy network of conservative tech billionaires. Codenamed “MAGA-InfoSec,” the operation would aim to take “sovereign control” of all reporting and social-media posts in the United States, deploying Musk’s capacities in machine learning to find and censor stories about Trump’s misdeeds. “If we don’t do something,” Maddow warned her audience, “Trump will cheat his way back into office and declare himself king for life.”
None of that, of course, happened. But consider the fact that something close to the opposite is true. The documents weren’t leaked from Rumble, but from Facebook and the app formerly known as Twitter. And they didn’t expose a Republican plot, but a Democratic one. There was indeed a concerted effort to suppress stories of partisan misdeeds. But it was already carried out, successfully, in 2020.
Maddow is a committed Democrat, so it isn’t surprising that she has thus far declined to report on the government-directed censorship revealed by the Twitter Files and Facebook leaks. Nor has she reported that the DHS, using a cut-out organization called the Election Integrity Partnership, suppressed allegations of election fraud in 2020. Instead, MSNBC and other mainstream outlets have cheered the censorship—that is, when they haven’t rapped Big Tech on the knuckles for not doing enough of it.