Twitter has hired former FBI attorney James Baker for a senior role at a time when the microblogging company is in an open spat with President Donald Trump and his conservative allies. The appointment of Baker as a senior official in the Twitter legal team has already come under fire for alleged bias against conservatives.
Baker was involved in the investigation into the Trump campaign and its Russia links during the 2016 presidential election. Twitter and Trump were in a feud after the site flagged Trump's controversial tweets on glorifying violence.
Twitter's general counsel Sean Edgett said Baker would join the social media company as a deputy general counsel.
Twitter Welcomes Baker
"Thrilled to welcome @thejimbaker to @Twitter as Deputy General Counsel," Edgett tweeted. "Jim is committed to our core principles of an open internet and freedom of expression, and brings experience navigating complex, global issues with a principled approach".
According to a Fox Business report on Tuesday, the most notable element of Baker's involvement in the Russia investigation was his work on the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) warrant application against then Trump campaign aide Carter Page. Trump in 2019 tagged Baker in one of his tweets.
What did Trump Tweet?
"Former FBI top lawyer James Baker just admitted involvement in FISA Warrant and further admitted there were IRREGULARITIES in the way the Russia probe was handled. They relied heavily on the unverified Trump "Dossier" paid for by the DNC & Clinton Campaign..." Trump tweeted.
At Twitter, Baker is likely to be involved in defending the company's protections under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, which limits liability for platforms, like Twitter, that allow anyone to publish content.
Section 230 is a US law that shields social media companies such as Twitter and Facebook from liability for content their users' post.
Baker replied to Edgett that he is happy to join Twitter. "Thanks @edgett!! I'm very excited to join such a great team @Twitter doing such important work. Glad to be on board".