“We can’t remove all of it because it will disproportionately affect conservatives,” said Kaplan, a former George W. Bush White House official and now the head of Facebook’s Washington office, according to people familiar with the meeting who spoke on the condition of anonymity to protect professional relationships.When another Facebook staff member pushed for the entire list to be taken down on the grounds that the accounts fueled the “fake news” that had roiled the election, Kaplan warned of the backlash from conservatives.“They don’t believe it to be fake news,” he said, arguing for time to develop guidelines that could be defended to the company’s critics, including on the right.The debate over “Project P,” which resulted in a few of the worst pages quickly being removed while most others remained on the platform, exemplified the political dynamics that have reigned within Facebook since Trump emerged as the Republican Party’s presumptive nominee to the White House in 2016. A company led mainly by Democrats in the liberal bastion of Northern California repeatedly has tilted rightward to deliver policies, hiring decisions and public gestures sought by Republicans, according to current and former employees and others who have worked closely with the company.
This is an old story, of “working the refs,” that Republicans have been employing for about half a century. Because it works.
* A new set of Quinnipiac polls show Trump leading potential challengers in Wisconsin, while the Democrats lead in Pennsylvania and Michigan.
* Daniel Lippman and Natasha Bertrand report that Trump’s allies are targeting every government employee involved in the Mueller investigation for revenge.
* And Juliet Eilperin reports that climate change is rapidly drying up the Colorado River.