Top executives at Facebook and Twitter donated tens of thousands of dollars to President-elect Joe Biden’s campaign, Federal Election Commission records reviewed by Fox News reveal, as the social media platforms come under fire for limiting the circulation of reports surrounding Hunter Biden’s business dealings in the weeks leading up to Election Day.
A Fox News review of FEC records shows that top executives at the social media companies made large donations to the Biden campaign, including several who gave the legal maximum of $2,800.
Fox News identified zero Facebook or Twitter executives who donated to Trump’s campaign.
According to FEC records, Facebook vice president of public policy, Erin Egan, donated $2,800 to Biden’s campaign on Oct. 1, in addition to the $2,800 she donated to the campaign during the Democratic primaries.
Facebook chief revenue officer David Fischer donated $2,800 to Biden during the primary, and an additional $750 during the general election, according to FEC records.
Facebook’s chief financial officer, David Wehner, donated the legal maximum of $2,800 to Biden’s campaign on April 22, FEC records show.
Facebook vice presidents Gene Alston, Michael Verdu, Shahriar Rabii and T.S. Khurana also donated the legal maximum of $2,800 to Biden’s campaign during the 2020 cycle, FEC records show. Instagram’s chief operating officer, Marne Levine, also donated the maximum limit of $2,800 to Biden’s campaign.
Over at Twitter, vice president Matt Derella donated $2,000 to Biden’s campaign in September.
And the executives were not alone. FEC records revealed that dozens of Twitter and Facebook employees with “manager” or “director” in their titles donated at least $1,000 to Biden’s campaign.
Twitter’s senior director Ryan Oliver, for example, donated $2,800 to Biden’s campaign in March; senior director of product management James Kelm also donated $2,800 to Biden during the primary and another $2,800 to his general election campaign, FEC records show.
At Facebook, the platform’s public policy director Steve Satterfield, another public policy director, Michael Matthews, product manager Brett Keintz and Facebook director Ibrahim Okuyucu, donated $2,800 to Biden’s campaign.
Facebook program manager David Debartolo donated $5,600 – split between Biden’s primary campaign and general election campaign – on March 29, FEC records show.
Just two Facebook employees with “manager” or “director” in their title donated to Trump’s campaign, neither of whom gave more than $300, according to FEC records. Zero Twitter employees with those titles donated to Trump’s campaign, FEC records show.
Twitter spokesman Trenton Kennedy told Fox News on Monday that the company has “stated many times – that we enforce the Twitter rules judiciously and impartially for everyone on our service.”
“Political ideology – especially that of our employees – plays no part in this process,” Kennedy said.
Facebook did not respond to Fox News’ request for comment.
“No campaign contribution is going to change Joe Biden’s fundamental values, including his belief that corporations who abuse their power should be held to account,” a Biden aide told Fox News on Monday.
The Biden campaign also noted that the president-elect has been critical of Facebook and pointed to instances where Biden has urged the social media company to more aggressively police misinformation.
“The Silicon Valley mafia was always in the tank for Joe Biden and everyone knew it. It’s why they blocked the sharing of the Hunter Biden story, to protect their boy Joe Biden. That was election interference, plain and simple, while they also targeted President Trump and other Republicans with censorship,” Trump campaign communications director Tim Murtaugh told Fox News Monday. “So it should surprise no one that they have also showered money on him.”
In October, reports suggested that Facebook and Twitter employees had sent more than 90% of political donations to Democrats. Employees at both tech giants contributed millions in individual donations and PAC donations, an analysis from the conservative watchdog group Media Research Center found.
The social media companies have come under fire from Republicans on Capitol Hill and conservatives for suppressing the circulation of reports in October related to Hunter Biden’s business dealings.
Twitter, just weeks before Election Day, prevented users from sharing a link to a New York Post report about emails shedding light on Hunter Biden’s foreign business dealings. Facebook similarly took measures to limit the article’s spread on its platform. The emails contradicted Hunter’s father Joe Biden’s past comments claiming he had no knowledge of his son’s business activities.
Not only did the platforms limit the circulation of that report, and others referencing the same emails, but Twitter suspended accounts of multiple prominent Republicans who attempted to share the reports – including White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany, as well as President Trump’s official reelection campaign Twitter account.
Twitter, at the time, claimed that the New York Post article was in violation of its “hacked materials policy” – a 2018 policy that prohibits the distribution of content “obtained without authorization.”
But those emails, which Fox News also obtained, were part of a server linked to Hunter Biden, who confirmed last week that he was under federal investigation for his “tax affairs.”
Fox News first reported in October that the server, and the laptop in question, which were linked to Hunter Biden, were subpoenaed in late 2019 by the FBI as part of a money-laundering investigation.
Hunter Biden, himself, confirmed last week a federal investigation into his “tax affairs” – an investigation that began in 2018.
Two sources familiar with the investigation told Fox News that it includes looking at that laptop and server purportedly belonging to Hunter Biden.
Meanwhile, a well-placed government source told Fox News that Hunter Biden is a subject/target of the grand jury investigation. According to the source, a “target” means that there is a “high probability that person committed a crime,” while a “subject” is someone you “don’t know for sure” has committed a crime.
The source told Fox News that President-elect Biden is not a subject of any grand jury investigation at this time.
The source also told Fox News that the investigation was predicated, in part, by Suspicious Activity Reports (SARs) regarding suspicious foreign transactions.
Another source familiar with the investigation told Fox News that the SARs were regarding funds from “China and other foreign nations.”
A Treasury Department official, who did not comment on the investigation, spoke broadly about SARs, telling Fox News that they are filed by financial institutions “if there is something out of the ordinary about a particular transaction.”
The official told Fox News that the mere filing of a SAR does not mean there has been a criminal act, or violation of regulations, but instead, flags that a transaction is “out of the ordinary” for the customer. The official noted, though, that a SAR could be part of a money-laundering or tax investigation.
Both Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg have testified on Capitol Hill, after demands from top Republicans, like Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, who has led much of the charge in the Senate in holding “Big Tech accountable.”
“Of course Silicon Valley billionaires donated to Joe Biden. But their political bias doesn’t end at their checkbooks,” a Cruz spokesperson told Fox News. “By censoring President Trump and news organizations, Big Tech stacked the deck for the Democrat Party and against the American people.”
The spokesperson added: “Sen. Cruz has long warned that Big Tech censorship is the single greatest threat to democracy, and will continue working with his colleagues to hold Big Tech accountable.”