A group of House Republicans has asked Twitter’s board to keep all the records relating to Elon Musk’s offer to buy the social media platform, which is a move to possibly set up a congressional probe if Republicans win back the majority in the November midterm elections.
In a letter shared with CNBC News, a group of 18 House Republicans requested that any messages from official or personal accounts relating to Musk’s offer be kept.
“As Congress continues to examine Big Tech and how to best protect Americans’ free speech rights, this letter serves as a formal request that you preserve all records and materials relating to Musk’s offer to purchase Twitter, including Twitter’s consideration and response to this offer, and Twitter’s evaluation of its shareholder interests with respect to Musk’s offer,” the letter, led by ranking member Jim Jordan of Ohio, said.
“You should construe this preservation notice as an instruction to take all reasonable steps to prevent the destruction or alteration, whether intentionally or negligently, of all documents, communications, and other information, including electronic information and metadata, that is or may be potentially responsive to this congressional inquiry,” the letter continued.
If the Republicans do regain control of the House, the House Judiciary Committee could potentially take this examination of Twitter even further and subpoena records about the board’s international deliberations, CNBC News reported.
“Decisions regarding Twitter’s future governance will undoubtedly be consequential for public discourse in the United States and could give rise to renewed efforts to legislate in furtherance of preserving free expression online. Among other things, the Board’s reactions to Elon Musk’s offer to purchase Twitter, and outsider opposition to Musk’s role in Twitter’s future are concerning,” the letter said.
The request from House Republicans signals the possible confidence of Republicans’ hopes to retake the majority of the House in the 2022 elections this November.
Meanwhile, Musk’s offer has still not been decided upon by Twitter.
On April 21, though, Musk confirmed that he had officially lined up $46.5 billion in debt and equity financing to buy the social media giant.
He is also considering just taking his offer straight to shareholders with a tender offer to just buy all company stock, Reuters reported. But he has not yet decided whether to do this.
Musk has indicated he wants to take Twitter private to let it grow and become a platform for free speech.
Twitter did not respond to Musk’s offer and has adopted the “poison pill,” which is a strategy to thwart aggressive investors and hostile takeovers.
A poison pill allows other shareholders to purchase stock at a discount in order to limit stock and potentially scare off an aggressive investor.
In the meantime, Republicans have cheered on Musk’s aspirations to buy Twitter and his vision for the social media platform, The Hill reported.
Twitter has not yet commented on the letter from Republicans.
But on April 21, the company issued a statement in response to Musk’s filing about his financing of the deal, Reuters reported.
“The board is committed to conducting a careful, comprehensive and deliberate review to determine the course of action that it believes is in the best interest of the company and all Twitter stockholders,” the statement read.
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