The attorneys general of Louisiana and Missouri and other plaintiffs asked a U.S. court in a recent motion to allow them to depose Fauci, President Joe Biden’s chief medical adviser; FBI special agent Elvis Chan; former White House press secretary and current MSNBC pundit Jen Psaki; Surgeon General Vivek Murthy, a Biden appointee; and Rob Flaherty, deputy assistant to the president.
They also want to question five other officials, including Carol Crawford, chief of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Digital Media Branch.
While emails and other documents uncovered in discovery have revealed an “enormous and far-reaching” censorship enterprise, the discovery “makes very clear that federal officials have frequently engaged in their most telling and probative communications with social media companies orally, not in writing,” plaintiffs said in a joint statement with defendants.
“Perhaps not surprisingly, the more senior the federal official involved, the more likely they appear to have been to rely on oral, rather than written, communications to pressure social-media platforms to censor,” the statement also said.
Fauci, for instance, communicated in a long-shielded phone call with some scientists who went on to write a paper castigating others who were open to the theory that the COVID-19 virus came from a laboratory in Wuhan, China, where the first COVID-19 cases were detected.