Elon Musk, CEO of Twitter and Tesla, with House Speaker Kevin McCarthy and Democratic Leader Hakeem Jeffries at the US Capitol in Washington on Thursday evening.
McCarthy, leaving the meeting with Musk in his office, declined to comment other than to say, “He came for my birthday.” The California Republican turned 58 on Thursday.
After the meeting, Musk wrote on Twitter that he met with McCarthy and Jeffries “to discuss ensuring this platform is fair for both parties.”
The meeting between Musk and congressional leaders comes as the House Oversight Committee plans to hold a hearing next month focused on Twitter and how it handled a story about Hunter Biden’s laptop. Members of the House GOP conference have pledged tough oversight of major tech and social media platforms, which they have accused of conservative censorship.
The panel has invited three former Twitter employees to testify and is in active discussions with the trio to appear before the committee, according to multiple sources familiar with the matter. The committee is considering February 8 as a potential target date for the hearing, the sources said.
Twitter’s handling of the Hunter Biden laptop story has been the subject of several so-called Twitter Files, corporate communications that were released to hand-picked reporters by Musk and his team on Twitter. Twitter files showed the company’s moderation team was angsty over how to handle early stories on the saga. Although early news stories were blocked or downplayed, the company quickly reversed course and allowed them to be published and discussed on the platform.
Musk has developed a reputation as a polarizing figure in the tech industry and for his political views. He has frequently publicly weighed in on American politics and the political landscape in recent months. Musk said he has voted for Democrats and Republicans in the past, but recently favored conservatives and says he identifies as a Republican.
The meeting comes amid a political power shift in Washington after Republicans took control of the House of Representatives in January and elected McCarthy as president.
This story and title have been updated with additional developments.