As Secretary of State, Governor Katie Hobbs Used Official Government Resources To Coordinate Censorship With Google During Her AZ Gubernatorial Campaign in Shocking Election Interference


Jordan Sekulow

February 14

In August of last year, we submitted an Arizona Public Records Law request to the Arizona Secretary of State. We sought “records regarding [then-]Secretary of State Katie Hobbs’s communications with Twitter (also known as X), Facebook (also known as Meta), Google (also known as Alphabet) or Instagram from January 7, 2019 to January 1, 2023.” Last August, reports broke that then-Secretary of State Katie Hobbs, who was running for Governor, used her government office to unconstitutionally censor her critics online.

As you know, Katie Hobbs is the current Governor of Arizona. She was elected in 2022 and assumed office on January 2, 2023. Previously, she was the Secretary of State of Arizona from 2019 to 2023.

In the latest tranche of documents sent to fulfill this request (provided February 1, 2024), there is an email from the then-Secretary of State’s Communications Director sent to Google staff, clarifying the process of reporting “dis/misinformation on Google or YouTube.” The email reads:

 This is Murphy Hebert, the comms director for the Arizona Secretary of State, We are putting together our materials for the volunteers monitoring Twitter on Election Day. I have these protocols from the last cycle: If you see dis/misinformation on Google or YouTube, please get a screenshot and then send it, a link to the issue, and a description of what is inaccurate to all of the following people: Erica Arbetter (redacted); Joe Dooley [redacted]; John Ruxton [redacted]; and Andrea Holtermann [redacted] Are there any updates?

Shockingly, you have the government official charged with overseeing free and fair elections – and who is also running for higher office – using government resources to organize a “volunteer” army to target free speech surrounding her own election and colluding with social media giants to censor it.

According to the Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency at the Department of Homeland Security, “misinformation” is false information without intent to create harm, while “disinformation” means false information with intent to mislead. A third category, “malinformation” is not mentioned here but is true information used to mislead.

Yet – as we have detailed before here – the self-appointed, supposedly objective “fact checkers” who police this material too often share the political biases of the radical Left. Consequently, information that is both true and fair is often categorized as mis-, dis-, or malinformation to censor legitimate free and political speech, especially when that speech expresses the corruption and failures of the radical Left. Time and again the “noble” motives of Deep State bureaucrats are revealed to be a façade to advance self-serving and authoritarian ends.

The FBI has even candidly shared in their internal emails that they believe the private industry is their “most valuable asset in censoring free speech. Leftist political campaigns seem to have taken the same tactics, including employing armies of volunteers to remove politically inconvenient details freely disseminated in the public square online. While we have now uncovered Hobbs’ use of government resources to violate First Amendment rights, there is significantly more digging to do to determine how and in what ways this was used to sway the electorate before and during the election.

The ACLJ will keep investigating until we find out what happened.