Twitter on Sunday temporarily suspended the account of Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, the Republican U.S. Congresswoman from Georgia who has expressed racist views and support for QAnon conspiracy theories online. Greene's account was suspended "without explanation," she said in a statement, while also condemning big tech companies for "silencing" conservative views.
The 46-year-old businesswoman and political newcomer was elected to represent Georgia's 14th District in November. She's gained large followings on social media in part by posting incendiary videos and comments and has also embraced QAnon, a far-right U.S. conspiracy theory centered around the debunked belief that President Donald Trump is waging a secret campaign against enemies in the "deep state" and a child sex trafficking ring they say is linked to Democrats.
Before noon Sunday, Greene posted a clip from an interview with a local news outlet in which she condemned Georgia election officials and expressed support for debunked theories claiming that voting machines, absentee ballots and other issues led to widespread fraud in the state during the presidential election.
Twitter responded to the tweet, and others, with a message that called the election fraud claim "disputed," and saying it posed "a risk of violence."
A statement from Greene's team on Sunday included screenshots from Twitter which appeared to show the company informing the congresswoman she had violated its rules and would be prohibited from interacting with content on the site for 12 hours.
Greene urged Congress to "act to protect free speech" in her statement.
The action comes a little more than a week after Twitter banned Trump from the platform, citing "the risk of further incitement of violence" following the deadly insurrection at the U.S. Capitol this month.
As of Jan. 12, Twitter had also suspended more than 70,000 accounts associated with QAnon as it attempted to rein in harmful activity ahead of the presidential inauguration. Twitter has said it is taking action against online behavior "that has the potential to lead to offline harm" after the mob of Trump supporters violently stormed the Capitol building on Jan. 6.
Greene has been criticized by those her party. In an op-ed in The Atlantic, Sen. Ben Sasse, R-Neb. wrote: "She's cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs" while criticizing House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy for not disavowing her campaign.
Greene has also come under fire for not wearing a mask while locked in a secure room with other House members during the attack on the U.S. Capitol. Video obtained by Punchbowl News showed several Republican members — including Greene — declining to wear masks, even as they were locked in a secure location for several hours.
Democratic Representatives Brad Schneider, Bonnie Watson Coleman and Pramila Jayapal all tested positive for COVID-19 after the incident. They have lashed out at Republicans over the incident.
First published on January 18, 2021 / 6:21 AM
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