House Democrats demand Parler reveal list of backers

Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY), chair of the House Oversight Committee, has asked social media site Parler to release the names of their investors and creditors.

Elie Cantin-Nantel Ottawa ON

Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY), chair of the House Oversight Committee, has asked social media site Parler to release the names of their investors and creditors.

In a letter to Parler COO Jeffrey Wernick, Maloney wrote,"In the weeks leading up to the assault on the Capitol on January 6, Parler users actively took to the platform to call for violence and even 'civil war.' A recent analysis by USA Today shows a strong connection between President Trump's speech at the January 6 rally and a significant uptick in calls for violence on Parler."

"Immediately after President Trump exhorted his supporters to 'show strength' during his speech, the term 'civil war' surged into one of the top five most frequently used terms on Parler. One user wrote, 'Be men fight back and f*** them up. Civil war is upon us.'"

Maloney cited the fact that many Parler users were arrested following Capitol Hill riot and claimed that the platform allowed "Russian disinformation" to spread during the 2020 election campaign.

"Individuals with ties to the January 6 assault should not—and must not—be allowed to hide behind the veil of anonymity provided by shell companies. In addition, according to a recent press report, the 'Trump Organization negotiated on behalf of then-president Donald Trump to make Parler his primary social network, but it had a condition: an ownership stake in return for joining,'" the letter adds.

"These negotiations reportedly occurred while President Trump was still in office, which experts have warned raise legal concerns regarding anti-bribery laws." Maloney gave Parler a list of things that the committee wants, which include the following:

"A capitalization table showing individuals and entities with direct or indirect ownership interests in Parler, and a shareholder register maintained by you or any third-party on your behalf;

"A list of all individuals and entities who have or had any control over Parler;

"A list of Parler’s creditors which hold or held a debt of at least $10,000, including the type of debt funding, amount owed, maturity, and applicable interest rate;

"All agreements, including but not limited to consulting, service, or business agreements, that Parler has with any Russian individual or entity;

"All documents and communications referring or relating to proposed or completed financing, gifts, or investment in Parler directly or indirectly by any Russian individual or entity; and

"All documents and communications referring to relating to a proposal to provide President Donald Trump with an ownership stake in Parler."

Democrats were quick to accuse Parler of playing a part in the Jan. 6 Capitol Hill riot. Tech giants Apple and Google both removed the app from their app stores, and Amazon removed Parler from their servers.

Facebook, however, may have played a greater role than Parler in the Capitol riot. Government documents on the Capitol riot mentioned Facebook 73 times, and Parler eight times.


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