A conservative group warned Republicans to avoid contributions from third parties funded by Big Tech groups, Axios reports.
The American Principles Project, a conservative advocacy organization, sent a letter to Republican members of Congress and their staff warning them to avoid lobbyists funded by big Tech to "influence public policy on the Right" and "coopt the Republican party."
"Over the last two years, Big Tech has not only interfered in our elections and increasingly censored conservatives, but also simultaneously plotted to coopt the Republican Party and avoid scrutiny on the Right by pouring millions of dollars into center-right think tanks," the letter said, warning particularly about lobbyists tied to Facebook and Google.
GOP warns of growing influence:
Jon Schweppe, the director of policy and government affairs at APP, told Axios that Big Tech’s influence goes beyond just the lobbyists they hire.
"Meeting with a group that gets Google money is essentially the same as meeting with a Google lobbyist,'" he told the outlet. "When you get funding from an entity, you have some loyalty to that entity, especially when they're bankrolling your salary. Members don't always know how deep this influence is."
GOP ramps up anti-tech rhetoric:
Republicans have focused on Big Tech companies after Facebook and Twitter restricted former President Donald Trump’s and others’ tweets pushing false claims that the election was stolen.
Conservatives have also accused the social networks of censoring speech and claim that Google has manipulated search results to make it more difficult to find conservative voices.
As a result, "Republicans are extremely against Big Tech," Schweppe said. "When you have ostensibly right-leaning groups representing their interests, there's a conflict there."