The Department of Homeland Security put a “pause” Monday on its disinformation board after the truth czar, who resigned Wednesday, came under fire for spreading disinformation herself, The Washington Post reported.
DHS shut the board down Monday and Nina Jankowicz, who was tapped to lead the department, drafted a resignation letter Tuesday, according to The Washington Post. Jankowicz was reportedly pulled into a meeting late Tuesday night, however, with officials giving her the chance to stay on as the department determines whether to move forward with the highly polarized board. Jankowicz formally resigned Wednesday, according to The Washington Post’s Taylor Lorenz.
— Taylor Lorenz (@TaylorLorenz) May 18, 2022
The decision comes as Jankowicz faced extreme backlash for pushing disinformation.
Jankowicz attempted to discredit the Hunter Biden laptop story as a “Trump campaign product” while speaking to ABC News in 2020. During the second presidential debate, Jankowicz posted that President Joe Biden cited “50 former natsec officials and 5 former CIA heads that believe the laptop is a Russian influence op.”
The laptop was authenticated by several outlets including the Daily Caller News Foundation.
A DHS spokesperson defended Jankowicz in a statement to The Post.
“Nina Jankowicz has been subjected to unjustified and vile personal attacks and physical threats. In congressional hearings and in media interviews, the Secretary has repeatedly defended her as eminently qualified and underscored the importance of the Department’s disinformation work, and he will continue to do so.”
The DHS announced the creation of the Disinformation Governance Board in April to counter what it considers misinformation and disinformation, particularly disinformation coming from Russia and misleading rhetoric about the U.S.-Mexico border. DHS Sec. Alejandro Mayorkas has fended off criticism of the board, recently saying the “board does not have any operational authority or capability.”
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