Gaetz Seeks to Defund Postal Service iCOP Program

Gaetz Seeks to Defund Postal Service iCOP Program

Grayson Bakich
Grayson Bakich
August 16, 2023

The United States Postal Inspection Service (USPIS), which protects the postal system, seems to be part of the apparent collusion between the Federal government and Big Tech to silence political dissent on social media. Representative Matt Gaetz (R-FL) has introduced legislation defunding the USPIS's "Internet Covert Operations Program (iCOP) for violating Americans' First Amendment rights.

The iCOP system, described by Rep. Gaetz as "illegal," would comb through sites such as Parler, Telegram, and Facebook, flagging "inflammatory" posts for further inspection by the Department of Homeland Security and other government agencies. 

Notably, an internal report from the USPIS acknowledged the iCOP program overstepped its legal boundaries in March 2022.

"We determined that certain proactive searches iCOP conducted using an open-source intelligence tool from February to April 2021 exceeded the Postal Inspection Service’s law enforcement authority. Furthermore, we could not corroborate whether other work analysts completed from October 2018 through June 2021 was legally authorized. We also found that management did not develop a records management policy or sensitive information storage and retention standards for iCOP," the report stated.

However, Rep. Gaetz noted that no news of iCOP's shuttering has followed.

In his press release, Gaetz slammed the USPIS for allowing the program to happen, given it "infringes on American citizens' civil liberties but is more evidence of the government-sanctioned spying on its own citizens."

"The Postal Service should be focused on delivering the mail on time and on budget, not running a covert surveillance program to monitor political behavior on social media. This program is not only outside USPIS' jurisdiction and infringes on American citizens' civil liberties but is more evidence of the government-sanctioned spying on its own citizens. Congress must immediately abolish this program," said Gaetz.

In July, Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) introduced a bill requiring Big Tech companies to disclose government censorship requests to the public.

"If the government is working with Big Tech to censor freedom of speech, the American public deserves to know," Sen. Rubio stated.

Related Posts

Grayson Bakich

Grayson Bakich

Florida born and raised, Grayson Bakich is a recent recipient of a Master’s Degree in Political Science at the University of Central Florida. His thesis examined recent trends in political polarization and how this leads into justification of violence.

Subscribe to the newsletter everyone in Florida is reading.

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.


More Related Posts