Arizona Republicans say Big Tech’s bias against conservatives is costing them the election

Carrie Lake told the small crowd gathered in the Arizona House of Representatives auditorium on Monday that Google has “more power than any entity in the world when it comes to choosing our leaders here in America,” before Rep. Alexander Kolodin made the announcement. He sees modern America as an “emerging totalitarian society”.

Lake, the failed 2022 Republican nominee for governor of Arizona, and Colloden, a freshman Republican lawmaker from Scottsdale, were highly critical of big tech’s influence on free speech and elections during the first meeting of the Arizona House Oversight Committee. Accountability and big technology.

During that meeting, Robert EpsteinA longtime psychology researcher and prominent critic of Google who has been studying search engine results and their impact on elections for nearly a decade has warned that the tech giant was already influencing elections in the United States by steering undecided voters towards certain candidates.

“If I took Google out of that picture, Curry Lake would be the winner,” Epstein said.

Lake lost her gubernatorial bid to Democrat Katie Hobbs by more than 17,000 votes.

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In 2019, Epstein He testified before the US Senate panel on a study he authored that concluded that Google could have influenced enough undecided voters in the 2016 presidential election to persuade between 2.6 million and 10 million undecided voters to support Hillary Clinton. He claims that Google influences elections by prioritizing search results that include positive coverage of a particular candidate.

Google has claimed that His research is flawedAnd his conclusion in that study was based on observing the results of the research for only 21 undecided voters out of 95, I mentioned slate on time.

Expanding his research, Epstein claimed that biased Google results in 2020 converted more than 6 million votes for President Joe Biden, who won the popular vote by more than 7 million votes.

Since then, Epstein has greatly expanded his efforts to monitor bias in Google search results, and claimed on Monday that his team had figured out how to determine exactly how many votes Google affected in a given election. He said he used this method to conclude that Lake would have won last year’s election without Google’s influence, but has not publicly disclosed his methods for reaching that conclusion.

Epstein did not immediately respond to requests for clarification from the Arizona Mirror about how his team determined how the alleged biased search results were directly related to a voter’s decision to change their support from one candidate to another or how Google promoted another candidate. Very reliable sources On low quality sources may affect the numbers.

Epstein, a Democrat, said he supported Clinton and Biden in the 2016 and 2020 presidential elections.

He also participated in the chamber, which was packed mostly with Republicans — many of whom are Born in 2020s and Mays. 2022 Election deniers He believes Google is intentionally promoting misinformation in search results as a form of misdirection, to keep Republicans focused on allegations of fraud related to voting machines rather than its own efforts to manipulate the election.

“Google is the largest and most powerful mind control machine ever invented,” Epstein said.

At the end of 2022, Epstein ramped up his search further, starting the first national monitoring system for Google search bias with 11,169 registered voters across all 50 states and 2,282 children and teens. He said he has raised more than $3 million to fund the effort, but on Monday told the committee he was running out of money quickly and would soon have to start laying off workers. in May, New York Post It reported that Epstein was touring the country asking for help Donations for his researchBut he said many business leaders are afraid to donate because they rely on Google for traffic to their businesses.

Epstein has been advocating for Google’s regulation, oversight, and accountability over the past several years, but he said there is no way to hold the company accountable without a monitoring system like his.

“It is about turning democracy into an illusion,” he said.

Epstein also shared that many media companies are afraid to write critical articles about Google because it also relies on the search engine for traffic. He said he believes critics will come after the surveillance system he built, and so will he.

“I think if we have a complete system next year, remember this day, because it will be one of the last days that I have a really clean reputation,” he said. “Next year, I will probably be accused of raping a large number of minors of all kinds of races who don’t even have names yet.”

After Epstein’s testimony, James Kerwin, an attorney with the Mountain State Law Firm, spoke to the commission about potential ways the state legislature could prevent government officials from coercing or persuading social media companies to censor speech they say is misinformation.

Lake addressed the audience during the meeting’s public comment period.

“Big tech companies are trying to destroy America through censorship,” she said.

She added that she believes Google should provide information to the public about how many people got out of line when this happened Problems with tables in Maricopa County in the 2022 general election, a complaint she used in one Several failed attempts To persuade the courts to annul the election results.

Kolodin, the commission’s chairman, promised to continue looking at the impact of Big Tech on voters, freedom of expression and elections.

Representative Cesar Aguilar of Phoenix, the only Democrat on the committee, told the Republicans present that if they want their views to appear higher in search results, they must adopt views that are more popular with voters.

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