Rep. Devin Nunes sues Twitter for $250M, claims ‘shadow ban’ of conservatives, report says

Rep. Devin Nunes, R-Tulare, filed a lawsuit against Twitter, several of its users and a political strategist in Virginia state court on Monday, according to a Fox News report. He is asking for $250 million in damages.

The lawsuit accuses Twitter of hiding, punishing or “shadow-banning” posts with a conservative bent – including those from Nunes – while simultaneously allowing others to profit from defaming him. Nunes’ attorney, Steven S. Biss, claims Twitter “allowed (and allows) its platform to serve as a portal of defamation in order to undermine public confidence in Plaintiff and to benefit his opponents and opponents of the Republican Party.”

Fox News posted what it said was a copy of the lawsuit, apparently filed in Henrico County. But the document does not bear an official stamp, mark or case number, and Virginia’s online courts database had no record of it being filed as of 5 p.m. Monday. The Bee reached out Biss and Nunes seeking to authenticate it.

Liz Mair – a political strategist who acted against Nunes in the previous election through the Swamp Accountability Project, a dark money group targeting President Donald Trump and his congressional allies – is the only individual named in the lawsuit. Two apparent parody Twitter accounts, “Devin Nunes’ Mom” and “Devin Nunes’ cow,” are also named.

Nunes’ lawsuit claims “Twitter contributed materially to the illegal conduct of defamers Mair, Devin Nunes’ Mom and Devin Nunes’ cow.”

Mair was unaware of the lawsuit when reached by The Bee late Monday evening.

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Rory Appleton is a fourth-generation Fresnan who covers politics for his hometown newspaper. A Fresno State graduate, he has won six first-place California News Publishers Association awards and a McClatchy President’s Award for his reporting and column writing over the last two years.
Kate Irby is based in Washington, D.C. and reports on issues important to McClatchy’s California newspapers, including the Sacramento Bee, Fresno Bee and Modesto Bee. She previously reported on breaking news in D.C., politics in Florida for the Bradenton Herald and politics in Ohio for the Cleveland Plain Dealer.