House Speaker McCarthy spoke with Musk about making Twitter 'fair on all sides'

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U.S. House Republican leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) talks to reporters as he arrives on the first day of the new Congress at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, January 3, 2023.

Evelyn Hockstein | Reuters

Twitter CEO Elon Musk discussed how to make the social media site “fair on all sides” in a meeting with House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., the lawmaker told reporters on Friday.

“He wants to have a level playing field” and for everybody to have a voice, McCarthy said of the meeting in remarks reported by NBC News. “He’s really defending the First Amendment. And we had a really good discussion.”

Musk shared on Twitter Thursday evening that he had met with McCarthy and Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries, D-N.Y., “to discuss ensuring that this platform is fair to both.” On Thursday, McCarthy only shared that Musk came to wish him a happy birthday.

On Friday, McCarthy also confirmed that Jeffries was in the Thursday meeting and that he had not previously met Musk.

An aide to Jeffries told The Washington Post his encounter with Musk was only coincidental and happened as Musk was leaving his meeting with McCarthy. Jeffries’ office confirmed the Washington Post anecdote to CNBC.

McCarthy also confirmed to reporters on Friday that he had convened a meeting in his office that day with Musk and several top Republicans: Majority Leader Steve Scalise R-La., Judiciary Committee Chair Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, Oversight Committee Chair James Comer, R-Ky., and Energy and Commerce Committee Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers, R-Wash.

McCarthy said he wanted to “continue to have that discussion” of fairness on tech platforms with the other lawmakers as they seek to move legislation and make sure “American has an even voice,” NBC News reported.

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