Senator Josh Hawley (R-MO) made himself a household name (and not in a good way) by helping to incite the failed (and deadly) MAGA coup. In doing so, he prompted Hallmark to take a stand against his insurrection-cheerleader ways, and several of Hawley’s hometown publications have taken him to the woodshed for his seditionist lies. Well, Hawley was photographed delivering fist-pumping encouragement on January 6 outside the U.S. Capitol complex, and he took a central role in questioning FBI Director Christopher Wray as part of a Senate Judiciary hearing on the MAGA riot.
As the Kansas City Star noted, Hawley quizzed Wray about how the FBI would use cell phone data (including geolocation data) against the insurrectionists by tracking their whereabouts on January 6. Hawley undoubtedly sought to couch his inquiries within a personal-liberty blanket, and here’s what he asked about cell-phone data pertaining to a riot that he, you know, helped to fuel:
“Are you saying… you don’t know whether the bureau has scooped up geolocation data, metadata cell phone records from cell phone towers? Do you not know, or are you saying maybe it has or maybe it hasn’t? Tell me what you know about this.”
Hawley's line of questioning pressed Wray on whether the FBI is using geolocation data from cell phones to investigate people who took part in the January 6 insurrection that Hawley encouraged pic.twitter.com/F40jCBXoO2
— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) March 2, 2021
Wray responded that it “would not surprise me” if cell phone records might be used in this way by the FBI during this investigation because “we do use geolocation data under specific authorities and specific instances,” but he couldn’t claim that he definitively knew that geolocation data would be used against the insurrectionists. Wray did stress that any actions by the FBI would be well within its jurisdiction and authority, and it remains to be seen how that collected cell phone data might shake out. In any event, social media noticed that Hawley seemed super interested in the subject. In fact, people wondered if he was “asking for a friend” while noting that “[s]omeone seems nervous.”
He’s asking for a friend.
— joanypop (@jonisiboni) March 2, 2021
“Director, more specifically, did the FBI use subpoenas to collect any cell phone data on January 6 from a device named ‘Josh’s iPhone’”? pic.twitter.com/rmlaanzDLm
— New York Mammoths (@NYMammoths) March 2, 2021
It seems to me like Hawley is more interested in the reports and details so that he can help spin a narrative. He isn't subject to live results in an active investigation. An investigation into events that Hawley, himself supported and encouraged.
— James Armstrong (@jwa131) March 2, 2021
— Sprinkles the Cat 🐯 (@sprinkles19025) March 2, 2021
Basically Hawley want to know, “Did you find out I used my cell phone to communicate with insurrectionists during the insurrection?” something like that … 🥸
— ᗷridget Expects Equal Justice for all 🅱︎🅻🅼 🗽⚖️ (@bridget123goooo) March 2, 2021
Josh is just… um, asking for a friend…
— Andrew McGill (@AndrewMcGIsMe) March 2, 2021
Well, we should find out more about this geolocation data soon? What a fine mess.