Tulsi Gabbard Compares Biden's TikTok Initiative to Russian Propaganda

Former Democratic congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard suggested that the Joe Biden administration's initiative to get TikTok stars to post updates on the war in Ukraine is similar to Russian propaganda pushed by state broadcasters.

Speaking to Fox News' Jesse Watters, Gabbard attempted to suggest that how the U.S. is choosing to deliver messages on the conflict is "not so different" to how the Kremlin spreads misinformation.

Gabbard was asked by Watters whether the U.S. is moving in the same direction as Russia with regards to spreading propaganda following reports that the White House had briefed dozens of popular TikTok personalities in order to promote information on the war in Ukraine.

Fox & Friends hosts Rachel Campos-Duffy, Brian Kilmeade, and Steve Doocy had already condemned the Biden administration for using the social media initiative to get TikTok stars, some of whom have millions of followers, to push the president's narrative that Vladimir Putin is to blame for the rising gas prices in the U.S.

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In response to Watters' question whether this is similar to "Putin propaganda," Gabbard replied: "We are moving in that direction."

The former Hawaii congresswoman then suggested that getting TikTok stars to promote the White House's messages falls under the conservative argument that those who disagree with liberal views are censored in society and social media.

"They're afraid of even a single voice coming out as challenging the power lead, questioning them, daring to hold a dissenting view," Gabbard said. "And they're afraid because their arguments are so weak that they know they will not withstand the light of the truth.

"This is why we're seeing not only still most of the mainstream media very vigorously defending and pushing the Biden propaganda.

"It's not enough, they're going to YouTubers, they're going to TikTok. It's not enough that they also have Google and Big Tech basically working for them and with them to control what information we see and what information we don't see," she said.

"What's happening here is not so different to we're seeing happen in Russia, where you've got state TV and controlled messaging across the board. This is where we're at."

Gabbard's comments arrived after she was accused of peddling Russian propaganda over comments she made about U.S.-funded biolabs in Ukraine.

Gabbard was accused of giving credibility to Moscow-pushed misinformation that there exists U.S.-military funded biolabs in Ukraine which were researching biological weapons in order to justify their invasion of the country.

Gabbard also recently told Fox News' Tucker Carlson that she was "deeply concerned" over claims about biological weapons in Ukraine, clips of which were played on Russian state television.

In her tweets, the former congresswoman did not repeat the false claims of Ukraine developing bioweapons.

She later clarified that she was merely expressing concerns about the fact that there are Ukrainian labs researching pathogens housed in an active warzone, and the pathogens would be released if the labs came under attack.

Senator Mitt Romney accused Gabbard of "parroting false Russian propaganda" and suggested her "treasonous lies may well cost lives."

Several hosts of The View also said that Carlson and Gabbard should be investigated by the Department of Justice for parroting "false Russian propaganda" to justify the attack on Ukraine.

Gabbard's statement that the U.S. and Russia are similar to each other with regard to propaganda arrived after Russian broadcaster Marina Ovsyannikova was detained after staging an anti-war demonstration live on Channel One, Russia's largest state television station.

Gabbard has been contacted for comment.

Tulsi Gabbard
Tulsi Gabbard participates in a TV interview at the U.S. Capitol January 9, 2020 in Washington, DC. The ex-Democratic congresswoman suggested the Biden administration's initiative to get TikTok stars to post updates on the war in Ukraine is similar to Russian propaganda. Alex Wong/Getty Images