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Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers. Photo: Zach Gibson/Getty Images

Republican Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers outlined a plan for fellow Republicans to hammer Big Tech companies in a memo obtained by Axios.

Why it matters: The "Big Tech Accountability Platform” serves as both a rallying cry for Republicans in the minority and an outline for some policy changes that could win bipartisan support.

Details: McMorris Rodgers, the top Republican on the House Energy & Commerce Committee, suggests working with Democrats on an agreement to sunset or establish a reauthorization date for Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, which provides a liability shield for online content posted by website users, as a legislative starting point.

  • Other ideas include revisiting platforms' October 2020 decision to limit the reach of a questionably sourced New York Post story on Hunter Biden, a nonstarter with Democrats.
  • But some closely mirror calls Democrats have made, such as exploring the power e-commerce giants exert in online marketplaces and pushing tech platforms to be more transparent and potentially legally answerable when it comes to moderation decisions.

What they're saying: "To be clear, we will not pursue government regulation of speech, but it’s a dereliction of our duty to our constituents to do nothing" McMorris Rodgers wrote in the memo, which was circulated to Republicans on the committee.

Go deeper

Jan 28, 2021 - Podcasts

Rep. Ro Khanna on top tech priorities, including Robinhood and Section 230

Big Tech is something all Americans use and most Americans complain about, no matter their political affiliation.

Axios Re:Cap goes deeper into the Biden administration's top Big Tech priorities, plus discussion of Section 230 and Reddit day trading with Rep. Ro Khanna (D-Calif.).

Simone Biles wins Olympic bronze in individual balance beam final

Photo: Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

U.S. gymnast Simone Biles made her Olympic return on Tuesday, winning bronze in the individual balance beam final.

Why it matters: Biles is now tied with Shannon Miller as the most decorated U.S. Olympic gymnast of all time, with seven total medals.

Biden rebuffs left on Breyer

Breyer at the Supreme Court in April. (Photo: Erin Schaff-Pool/Getty Images)

President Biden and his top aides are rebuffing activists who want the White House to pressure Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer to retire, sources with direct knowledge of the situation tell Axios.

Behind the scenes: Both Biden and Chief of Staff Ron Klain believe applying such pressure — publicly or even privately — would politicize and damage the institution of the Supreme Court, the sources said. They're also afraid it could backfire.