Florida CFO Jimmy Patronis announced a consumer protection bill Thursday that would prevent state agencies from using taxpayer funds to contract with media censorship companies like NewsGuard.
Florida HB 939 mirrors similar federal legislation that moved to strike the Pentagon from contracting with advertising agencies that use NewsGuard to blacklist conservative publications.
“We’ve got state agencies throughout Florida trying to reach the public to provide critical services, and we need to make sure advertisers who partner with the state are doing their very best to reach the specific groups,” Patronis said in the announcement.
“NewsGuard’s technology, however, is working its way into the advertising world, and effectively blacklisting media outlets who don’t measure up to their ratings.”
The legislation comes on the heels of Patronis’ letter to NewsGuard in March, warning then he would “not hesitate to use the full force of my office to shed light on the organization you’re running.”
“This is a new dystopian landscape where we’ve got Big Government, partnering with Big Business, in using NewsGuard to punish those that don’t parrot the government’s narrative. That’s not the way any of this should work, and I don’t want a single penny of Florida taxpayer money being used to subsidize garbage,” Patronis said in Thursday’s release.
The far-left NewsGuard was founded by Steve Brill, an entrepreneur who has been a high-profile Democrat activist and donor.
Brill and his wife, Cynthia, have donated to numerous Democrats over decades, including Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama.