• Sen. Chuck Grassley said Twitter’s CEO should step down if a whistleblower’s claims are true.
  • The senator made the comment at Tuesday’s hearing featuring ex-Twitter security chief Pieter Zatko.
  • Zatko alleges Twitter failed to protect user privacy and national security, which Twitter denies.

Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa said Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal should step down if the company whistleblower’s allegations are true.

The Republican senator made the comment during Tuesday’s Congressional hearing in which ex-Twitter security chief Pieter Zatko testified over what he says was the company’s failure to protect user privacy and national security, among other claims.

Sen. Grassley said if Zatko’s complaints turn out to be warranted, Agrawal’s title would be at risk.

“If the allegations are true, I don’t see how Mr. Agrawal can maintain his position at Twitter,” Grassley said.

He also said Agrawal refused to appear at the Tuesday hearing and condemned his decision.

“He should be here to address” the issue, Grassley said. Twitter did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment. 

Zatko answered questions from lawmakers for two hours Tuesday, making new allegations such as the claim that at least one Chinese spy was employed at Twitter.

Twitter and Elon Musk remain locked in legal battles over whether or not Musk will purchase the social media giant for $44 billion. Twitter shareholders voted Tuesday to approve Musk’s takeover of the company.

A trial involving Twitter’s lawsuit against the Tesla CEO is slated to begin on October 17. Musk tweeted a simple popcorn emoji during Tuesday’s hearing, indicating he likely tuned in — Zatko’s testimony could impact Musk’s case in the legal battle.

Agrawal assumed the role of Twitter CEO in November 2021 after founder Jack Dorsey announced he was stepping down. Prior to that, Agrawal had been at the company for 10 years.