Texas AG Ken Paxton is sued by Media Matters for a “retaliatory” investigation

Media Matters for America, a progressive media watchdog group, has filed a lawsuit in federal court against Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton. The lawsuit alleges that Paxton violated the First Amendment by initiating an investigation into Media Matters for America. The investigation was launched in response to the organization’s own investigation into X, the social media platform owned by Elon Musk, previously known as Twitter.

Following the release of a report by Media Matters, an investigation was launched to address the issue of major brands’ advertisements appearing alongside white nationalist content on X. As a result, several prominent advertisers, including Disney, IBM, Warner Bros., Sony, Apple, and Fox Sports, swiftly severed their ties with the platform.

The platform’s billionaire owner wasted no time in criticizing the organization, vowing to take legal action and following through with a “thermonuclear” lawsuit. Musk hinted that this was just the beginning of a series of legal battles.

Days later, Paxton took immediate action by launching his own investigation. He framed his inquiry using the same language of the culture war that Musk had used against Media Matters.

In order to safeguard the public from being deceived by radical left-wing organizations aiming to restrict freedom by limiting public participation, the right-wing firebrand, who had previously faced a challenging impeachment process due to accusations of public corruption, initiated an investigation.

Media Matters is now countersuing Paxton, claiming that he is attempting to retaliate against them for their investigative journalism. In the lawsuit, which has been obtained by The Daily Beast, they argue that Paxton is subjecting them to an unjustified and capricious government investigation in a state where they have no significant ties. Furthermore, they assert that he is seeking access to their confidential journalistic and organizational materials.

The organization claims that Paxton’s investigation is a direct assault on the First Amendment, hindering the news company from publishing additional articles on X and Musk due to the fear of facing more retaliation. The lawsuit argues that the retaliatory actions taken by Paxton have had a chilling effect on the plaintiffs’ ability to investigate and report news stories, as well as limiting their participation in meaningful public discourse surrounding political extremism on the X platform.

Media Matters filed a lawsuit claiming that Paxton failed to provide any explanation as to how the company violated Texas’s trade practices law or what jurisdiction he had over them. According to Media Matters, Paxton’s press release lacked any meaningful analysis of these issues.

The lawsuit, filed in Maryland, seeks a permanent block on Paxton’s investigation. It was filed by Eric Hananoki, the reporter responsible for the stories in question.

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