US House of Representatives launches inquiry into X’s actions in Brazil News
Kim Shiflett, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
US House of Representatives launches inquiry into X’s actions in Brazil

X Corp. CEO Elon Musk announced the company received an inquiry from the US House of Representatives. The inquiry aims to look into Musk’s concerns surrounding free speech in Brazil, according to Musk. The Wednesday announcement comes less than a week after Brazil Supreme Court (STF) Justice Alexandre de Moraes opened a criminal inquiry into Musk for obstruction of justice and incitement for defying a previous order.

Moraes previously ordered X—formerly known as Twitter—to ban “certain popular accounts in Brazil.” STF did not detail the reasons for bans the accounts or any posts that violated Brazilian law. X was not allowed to disclose the names of the accounts to be blocked, though Musk later identified the accounts as belonging to “sitting members of the Brazilian parliament and many journalists.”

Moraes has been investigating “digital militias,” whom he alleges spread political fake news on social media platforms such as X. Moraes alleged that anti-democratic actors used social media platforms and private messaging services to undermine Brazil’s democracy. He added that social media administrators could be found criminally liable if they incited or participated in anti-democratic conduct.

Musk criticized Moraes’ actions in a post on X, saying it “violate[s] the law & will of the people of Brazil.” Musk also called for Moraes to resign or face impeachment. Musk later lifted the X bans in defiance of the STF order. Musk posted:

We are lifting all restrictions. This judge has applied massive fines, threatened to arrest our employees and cut off access to X in Brazil. As a result, we will probably lose all revenue in Brazil and have to shut down our office there. But principles matter more than profit.

Moraes imposed a fine of nearly $20,000 per day for violations of his order.

The House of Representatives has not commented on the inquiry.