EXCLUSIVE: Republican leaders are calling for a congressional hearing and seeking more information on GoFundMe's decision to block donations for the Canadian trucker's Freedom Convoy – arguing that the move amounts to another attack by Big Tech on free speech.
"We are concerned about the growing trend of Big Tech’s increasing refusal to permit a level playing field in the marketplace of ideas, instead actively censoring conservative viewpoints while promoting far-left causes, especially where millions of dollars in crowdsourced funds are potentially misappropriated," read a letter from House Minority Whip Steve Scalise, R-La., and House Oversight Committee ranking member James Comer, R-Ky.
Sent Thursday afternoon, the letter asked Oversight Chair Carolyn Maloney, D-N.Y., and Majority Whip James Clyburn, R-S.C., for a hearing examining GoFundMe's decision and the "evolution of its policies on diverting donated funds to other causes deemed by the company to be 'credible and established.'"
A separate letter similarly targeted the company's policies, requesting that by Feb. 24 GoFundMe provide various documents related to its action on the Freedom Convoy and its practices in general.
In announcing its decision to refund Freedom Convoy donations, GoFundMe argued that the demonstration had started as peaceful but eventually saw unlawful behavior.
"GoFundMe supports peaceful protests and we believe that was the intention of the Freedom Convoy 2022 fundraiser when it was first created," the release read. It added: "We now have evidence from law enforcement that the previously peaceful demonstration has become an occupation, with police reports of violence and other unlawful activity."
But some, like Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, have accused of the company of left-wing bias. Both he and Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt said Wednesday that they were opening investigations into GoFundMe's decision.
Comer's and Scalise's letter also suggests that GoFundMe's accusations of "unlawful" behavior were unwarranted.
"GoFundMe publicly justified these actions by claiming that it had received evidence from unidentified local officials that ‘the previously peaceful demonstration has become an occupation, with police reports of violence and other unlawful activity,’" the congressmen told the fundraising powerhouse.
"It appears that GoFundMe simply obeyed requests from local ‘city officials’ who disagreed with the protests and acted at their behest to remove the Freedom Convoy 2022 page from its platform." Yet, the New York Times has described the protests as "boisterous" but "mostly peaceful and festive."
GoFundMe did not immediately respond to FOX Business' request for comment. The company blocked $10 million in donations intended for those participating in the Ottawa protests.
The company initially said donors could submit a refund form but later, amid potential fraud investigations, said it would automatically refund their money.
FOX Business' Danielle Wallace contributed to this report.