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House Republican amazed after exchange reveals Biden DOJ official didn’t know about major First Amendment case

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A civil rights official at the Department of Justice, Kristen Clarke, was sharply criticized by congressional lawmakers after claiming she was not familiar with a landmark case about freedom of speech.

The Supreme Court agreed in October to review a court-ordered ban on certain communications between the Biden administration and Big Tech platforms after state attorneys general from Missouri and Louisiana accused high-ranking government officials of working with social media companies “under the guise of combating misinformation.” They argued this ultimately led to censoring speech on topics that included Hunter Biden’s laptop, COVID-19 origins and the efficacy of face masks.

Missouri Attorney General Andrew Bailey said the high court’s review could signal the justices “acknowledge that these are the worst First Amendment violations in this nation’s history and that this issue has to be addressed, and it has to be addressed by the highest court in the land.”

A confrontation occurred at a Tuesday House Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution and Limited Government hearing as Clarke claimed ignorance regarding a major case about personal liberty in the United States.


Rep. Dan Bishop, R-N.C. recalled the “Missouri vs. Biden case” has been speculated by the district court to possibly investigate the “most massive attack on free speech in United States history and how the Supreme Court has since taken jurisdiction of the case.” 

Bishop then asked her directly, “Is any criminal investigation or prosecution of the persons responsible for that activity in the FBI, CISA, and at the White House and their co-conspirators underway in the Civil Rights Division?”

“Congressman, I’m not familiar with this litigation, but happy to bring your question back,” Clarke replied.

 “You are not aware of the Missouri vs. Biden litigation that is currently being taken up by the United States Supreme Court. Is that correct?” Bishop asked.

“Unfortunately, I’m not, Congressman,” Clarke answered.

Kristen Clarke


Bishop pivoted and argued that if what she said was true, then it puts the priorities of her department in question.

“Assuming that you’re not aware of that, what reason would there be that the civil rights division of the Justice Department leader is unaware of what a United States District Court has described as the most massive attack on free speech in the United States history?” he asked.

After suggesting it would be “helpful” if the lawmaker could “share more of the facts,” Clarke later claimed that “this does not appear to be a case that I’m familiar with.”

Footage of the exchange went viral across social media as public figures slammed the official for claiming to not be aware of a case about the very rights her department should be protecting in theory.

“The Assistant AG for Civil Rights at the DOJ has ZERO awareness of the Missouri v. Biden case, which is set to be heard by SCOTUS,” Bishop wrote. “A US District Court called the Biden admin’s actions in the case ‘the most massive attack against free speech in United States’ history.’ Wow.”

In a following post to X, formerly known as Twitter, he wrote, “How could it be possible that the Assistant AG has zero awareness of such a consequential case for Americans’ #1a rights?” alongside a thinking emoji.

On another account, Bishop added that the video explains one’s questions, “If you wonder why it falls to state attorneys general to protect fundamental individual rights under the US Constitution.”

“Missouri v. Biden exposed the vast censorship enterprise between big tech and the government to censor American voices,” Sen. Eric Schmitt, R-Mo., wrote. “The fact that the Assistant AG for Civil Rights at the DOJ has no idea about it is insane.”

Author and commentator Michael Shellenberger, who has spoken and testified about the government cracking down on free speech, also wrote, “This is insane.”

Brianna Herlihy contributed to this report.

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