That stench from Arizona grows

It wasn't just Democrat operatives from Biden campaign who were directing Twitter to censor posts unfavorable to Joe Biden's presidential prospects behind closed doors.

Arizona Democrat gubernatorial candidate Katie Hobbs, whose job at the time was sitting secretary of state, also got in on the act.

According to the Post Millennial:

Arizona Governor-Elect Katie Hobbs is facing backlash as proof that her office requested for certain tweets to be censored came out of Elon Musk's release of the "Twitter Files," the internal documents showing collusion between government officials, campaign teams, and other like actors with the social media giant to silence political dissent.

On January 7 2021, the communications director for Hobbs' Secretary of State office emailed the Center for Internet Security (CIS), a 501 nonprofit cybersecurity organization that "makes the connected world a safer place for people, businesses,  and governments through our core competencies of collaboration and innovation," according to their website.

"I'm flagging this Twitter account for your review," Hobbs' comms director wrote to, linking to an unidentified profile. The subject line was "Election Related Misinformation."

The "misinformation" department at CIS then forwarded the message along to an employee at Twitter, writing "Please see this report below from the Arizona SOS office. Please let me know if you have any questions."

"Thank you," Twitter wrote back. "We will escalate."

About seven hours later, a Twitter employee wrote again; "Thank you... both tweets have been removed from the service." Copied on this response was an employee at the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), a branch under the federal government's Department of Homeland Security (DHS).

Well, that's service with a smile.  The Post Millennial doesn't mention the topic, but the tweets in question concerned claims by some obscure character with a low follower count that Arizona's electoral system was owned by foreign interests.  Why that was so important at the time is something of a mystery, given the variety of claims out there, but it is known that Chinese involvement in electoral infrastructure did result in an arrest in California shortly after the New York Times reported that the claim was absurd.  That Twitter jumped to the request to make the deletions without verifying whether Hobbs's office was telling the truth is questionable activity right there.

Hobbs's office made the censorship request to Twitter in January of 2021 and declared her candidacy for governor on June 2, 2021, so she must have been thinking about running at the time.

It's unknown if there have been further communications with the Twitter office, through the Department of Homeland Security since that date.

The heavily redacted document, found on page 46 of Elon Musk's Twitter document dump, and viewable here, shows that the communicant was someone calling herself the communications director for the Arizona secretary of state's office.  Who might that be?  Well, a Google search shows that the name that comes up is one C. Murphy Hebert, a former Democrat party communications director for the Legislature whose apparent Twitter account, abandoned since 2016, reads

Arizona House Democratic communications director, occasional consultant, writer and unabashed giggler.

So she's been a Democrat operative for awhile.

Her LinkedIn page seems to have been blocked off or deleted.  "We're having trouble loading the page," says my LinkedIn search result.

Someone took a screen shot of her LinkedIn résumé before it was blocked off:

Her bio also has been scrubbed from the Arizona Secretary of State's office, though she is still listed as the communications director.

Update: That seems to have been blocked or deleted, too — there appears to be no information at all about a communications director as this is being written, with just a nameless form email for those who wish to communicate with her.

Here is what I saw earlier; someone else took a screen shot.

I clicked on that name at the time, and there was only a dead link.  Now there appears to be nothing at all.

A search of her last name on the state site signals that someone manipulated the search result to show "bike shed" rather than Hebert, leaving no results.  Here is a screen grab.

Maybe there's a completely innocent explanation for the Hobbs office communicating with Twitter to censor tweets, but the scrubbing in recent hours suggests maybe something isn't so innocent.  Why the scrubbing if everything was on the up and up?

Why this behavior?  And more to the point, what other tweets did Hobbs's office call on Twitter to have censored?  Did she have the tweets of her rival, Kari Lake, shadowbanned, too?

This is a significant case because unlike that of the Biden campaign calling to censor tweets regarding the abandoned laptop of Hunter Biden and all its revelations of corruption and debauchery, this request came from a state actor, looking to shut down tweets in the name of stopping "disinformation."  This is a bona fide case of state-sponsored censorship, done under cover of darkness, and Twitter was happy to serve as the loyal lapdog for it.  By mid-2021, Hobbs was running for governor of the state as well as counting the votes, so things got convenient.

Arizona's Republican candidate on the short end of this stick, Kari Lake, has begun probably a series of lawsuits alleging voter suppression.  Well, it seems that the voter suppression wasn't just limited to curiously broken voting machines on a mass scale in Maricopa County as votes were counted.  There may well have been suppression of voters through Twitter as well, in what undoubtedly appears to be an undeclared campaign contribution from Twitter to the Hobbs campaign.

Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene has rightly called for a congressional investigation of this voter suppression and these undeclared campaign contributions, as Twitter seems to have served as an all-services clearinghouse for Democrats of every stripe, in office and out.  That can't happen soon enough.  Something is starting to smell very bad coming out of Hobbs's office out in Arizona.

Image: Secretary of State's office, State of Arizona, screen shot, fair use.

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