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The now-disbanded ‘Ministry of Truth’ ran up against a harsh political reality: Americans across the political spectrum had no desire to be censored by their own government.
Both Republicans and vulnerable Democrats facing midterm elections came under increasing pressure to ensure voters were not silenced by the Department of Homeland Security’s new ‘Disinformation Board.’
Sen. Bill Hagerty, a Republican from Tennessee, sent a letter to DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas earlier in May outlining why the Disinformation Board was probably illegal.
“Hagerty wrote that the board may violate the Antideficiency Act, which says the executive branch can’t spend money unless Congress authorizes it, and that its creation also may be subject to the Congressional Review Act,” the New York Post reported.
“Plainly, this DHS Disinformation Governance Board imposing significant constraints on the bedrock of American values and freedoms and new costs on the American people requires congressional review and may be a violation of the Antideficiency Act,” Hagerty wrote.
“Establishment of this board will significantly impact Americans’ free speech rights and cuts across numerous areas of government and society,” he added. “It will change the relationship between the government and the governed to whom it answers. It will also substantially increase administrative costs for the number of different federal agencies engaged in this effort, which will impose increased costs on the American taxpayer.”
Critically, Hagerty’s letter threatened legal action against Mayorkas.
“Further, this action may also be a direct violation of provisions of the Antideficiency Act,” Hagerty added, “which prohibits ‘making or authorizing an expenditure from, or creating or authorizing an obligation under, any appropriation or fund in excess of the amount available in the appropriation or fund unless authorized by law.’”
“In this case, it appears that the amount available for this action is ‘none’ and that Congress explicitly defunded it, just weeks ago,” he continued.
“Section 513 of Division F of the Fiscal Year 2022 Omnibus Appropriations Act (P.L. 117-103) specifically prohibits the Secretary of Homeland Security from using any funds provided by Congress to carry out Section 872 of the Homeland Security Act of 2002, which means it defunded any action to ‘allocate or reallocate functions among the officers of the Department of Homeland Security or to establish, consolidate, or alter organizational units within the Department of Homeland Security.’
“As you know, an officer or employee, including you, who violates the Antideficiency Act ‘shall be subject to appropriate administrative discipline,’ and, for willful violations, faces a criminal fine, imprisonment, or both,” Hagerty went on.
“The letter asks Mayorkas to confirm he will make the board reviewable under the Congressional Review Act and notify the White House budget office if DHS violated the Antideficiency Act,” the Post noted.
Three other Congressmen wrote letters to Mayorkas expressing grave concerns over the DHS board.
GOP Reps. John Katko of New York and Mike Turner of Ohio sent a letter raising “serious concerns” over the body. Sen. Josh Hawley of Missouri also wrote a letter, stating the board is “dangerous and un-American.”
Hawley also introduced legislation to dissolve the board, which would also remove the executive director position currently held by Nina Jankowicz.
It turns out that legislation will no longer be necessary, since the Disinformation Governance Board was disbanded.
Syndicated with licensed permission from Becker News. Follow Becker News on Telegram.
Current Founder, CEO and Chief Editor of Becker News. Former Writer & Associate Producer at Fox News for #1 top-rated prime-time cable news show. Former Director of Viral Media and Senior Managing Editor for award-winning startup website IJReview, which grew to a readership of 20-30 million Americans a month. Led editorial and social media team that was #1 ranked news & politics publisher on Facebook for story engagement. Writer whose thousands of digital articles have been read by over 100 million unique users.