Andrew Bailey
Missouri Attorney General
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Attorney General Bailey Files Suit Against Media Matters for Refusal to Cooperate with Investigation

Home 9 Press Release 9 Attorney General Bailey Files Suit Against Media Matters for Refusal to Cooperate with Investigation

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – Today, Missouri Attorney General Andrew Bailey filed suit against Media Matters to force the nonprofit to turn over documents related to his investigation into its fraudulent business practices. General Bailey launched his investigation in November 2023 after evidence came to light that Media Matters solicited donations from Missourians under false pretenses to target X, formerly known as Twitter, in direct violation of the Missouri Merchandising Practices Act.

“My office has reason to believe Media Matters used fraud to solicit donations from Missourians in order to bully advertisers into pulling out of X, the last social media platform dedicated to free speech in America, so we launched an investigation to get to the bottom of it,” said Attorney General Bailey.  “However, Media Matters has a sordid history of refusing to cooperate with investigations. I’m not going to let this activist group stonewall us. If there has been any attempt to defraud Missourians in order to trample on their free speech rights, I will root it out and hold bad actors accountable.”

Media Matters came under fire after allegations surfaced that the organization deceitfully manipulated X’s algorithm to place advertisers’ content next to contrived controversial posts, causing X to suffer astronomical financial losses when affected advertisers pulled their money from the site. Media Matters has been outspoken in its attempts to defame X for its refusal to censor disfavored viewpoints.

General Bailey’s lawsuit details how, “Media Matters, a self-styled not-for-profit ‘progressive research and information center,’ envisions itself monitoring, analyzing, and correcting ‘conservative misinformation’ in the U.S. media. In fact, this description falls far short of reality for this political activist organization. Instead, rather than passively ‘monitoring,’ Media Matters has used fraud to solicit donations from Missourians in order to trick advertisers into removing their advertisements from X, formerly Twitter, one of the last platforms dedicated to free speech in America.”

The suit further notes, “Media Matters has pursued an activist agenda in its attempt to destroy X, because they cannot control it. And because they cannot control it, or the free speech platform it provides to Missourians to express their own viewpoints in the public square, the radical ‘progressives’ at Media Matters have resorted to fraud to, as Benjamin Franklin once said, mark X ‘for the odium of the public, as an enemy to the liberty of the press.’ Missourians will not be manipulated by ‘progressive’ activists masquerading as news outlets, and they will not be defrauded in the process.”

The suit asserts, “Based on serious allegations of false and deceptive behavior, the Attorney General’s Office has issued a Civil Investigative Demand (‘CID’), as authorized by Missouri Law, to Media Matters to investigate possible violations of the Missouri Merchandising Practices Act. Because Media Matters has refused such efforts in other states and made clear that it will refuse any such efforts, the Attorney General seeks an order from the Court, 2 pursuant to section 407.090, compelling Media Matters to comply with the CID within 20 days.”

The lawsuit can be read here.

The civil investigative demand can be read here.