The top lawyers for Facebook, Twitter and Google are sworn in for a hearing in November. Photo: Alex Wong / Getty Images

Big Tech returns to Capitol Hill Wednesday to answer questions from the Senate's influential Commerce Committee about how it handles terrorist content, following hearings last year on Russian election interference.

"The companies that our witnesses represent have a very difficult task: preserving the environment of openness upon on which their platforms have thrived, while seeking to responsibly manage and thwart the actions of those who would use their services for evil," Chairman John Thune plans to say in his opening statement. "We are here today to explore how they are doing that, what works, and what could be improved."

Who's going:

  • Facebook's Monika Bickert
  • YouTube's Juniper Downs
  • Twitter's Carlos Monje
  • Former FBI agent Clint Watts

What to watch: All three companies declined to comment. They'll likely try to stick to the talking points they've honed in the debate over extremist content online here and abroad. Still, lawmakers are sure to take advantage of being able to ask questions of employees who have expert-level knowledge of their respective online platforms.

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Robert Mueller speaks out on Roger Stone commutation

Former Special Counsel Robert Mueller testifies before the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence on Capitol Hill on Wednesday July 24, 2019. Photo: The Washington Post / Contributor

Former special counsel Robert Mueller responded to claims from President Trump and his allies that Roger Stone was a "victim" in the Justice Department's investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election, writing in a Washington Post op-ed published Saturday: "He remains a convicted felon, and rightly so."

Why it matters: The rare public comments by Mueller come on the heels of President Trump's move to commute the sentence of his longtime associate, who was sentenced in February to 40 months in prison for crimes stemming from the Russia investigation. The controversial decision brought an abrupt end to the possibility of Stone spending time behind bars.

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President Trump wore a face mask during his Saturday visit to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, according to AP.

Why it matters: This is the first known occasion the president has appeared publicly with a facial covering as recommended by health officials since the coronavirus pandemic began, AP writes.

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Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

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