The Corner

Cornyn vs. Big Brother

AFP:

A leading Republican US Senator on Wednesday sharply assailed a White House request for supporters to help track “fishy” claims about President Barack Obama’s plans to overhaul US health care.

“I am not aware of any precedent for a president asking American citizens to report their fellow citizens to the White House for pure political speech that is deemed ?fishy? or otherwise inimical to the White House?s political interests,” John Cornyn of Texas wrote US President Barack Obama.

“As Congress debates health care reform and other critical policy matters, citizen engagement must not be chilled by fear of government monitoring the exercise of free speech rights,” he wrote.

Cornyn was responding to a message on Tuesday from Obama’s director of new media, Macon Phillips, who asked on an official White House blog for members of the public to forward questionable claims to the administration.

“There is a lot of disinformation about health insurance reform out there, spanning from control of personal finances to end of life care. These rumors often travel just below the surface via chain emails or through casual conversation,” said Phillips.

“Since we can?t keep track of all of them here at the White House, we?re asking for your help. If you get an email or see something on the web about health insurance reform that seems fishy, send it to flag@whitehouse.gov,” said Philips.

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