House Speaker Nancy Pelosi criticized Facebook Thursday for its role in “misleading the American people” with political ads bought “with money from God knows where.”
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“The Facebook business model is strictly to make money,” Pelosi (D-Calif.) said. “They don’t care about the impact on children, they don’t care about truth, they don’t care about where this is all coming from.”
Pelosi made the comment at her weekly press conference Thursday morning in response to a question about Democrat presidential contender Pete Buttigieg saying in a New York Times interview that he believes Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has too much power.
“I think they have been very abusive of the great opportunity that technology has given them,” Pelosi said of Facebook. “My thought about them is, all they want is their tax cuts and no antitrust action against them. And they schmooze this administration in that regard because, so far, that is what they have received.”
The company didn’t provide a response to FOX Business before publication.
Facebook, which has an office within Pelosi’s congressional district in San Francisco, has said it won’t fact-check political ads. Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg said in an interview with Katie Couric in October that the company believes the ads “are part of political discourse and that taking political ads means people can speak.”
Sandberg also claimed the people who have benefited the most from running political ads on Facebook “are not covered by the media so they can’t get their message out otherwise.”
Pelosi has experienced misinformation on Facebook firsthand. A doctored video of her, edited to make her appear drunk, went viral last May. The company has maintained that it would not take down the video under its deepfake ban but said that its independent fact-checkers did eventually tag it as “false.”
During her press conference Thursday, Pelosi called Facebook’s action around misinformation “shameful.”
“They didn’t even check on the money from Russia in the last election,” she said. “They never even thought they should. So they have been very irresponsible.”