INDIANAPOLIS – Twitter suspended 3rd District GOP Congressman Jim Banks' professional account Saturday after removing a tweet about a transgender woman due to violation of the social media giant's rules.
While his account is still online, he cannot add tweets to it until he deletes the offending tweet. So Banks took to his private account – which has 65,000 followers – to excoriate Twitter.
“Twitter has suspended my official account for posting a statement of FACT. I won't back down. I'll be posting on my personal account for the time being...Big Tech must be held accountable!” he said.
On Tuesday, Banks posted two tweets regarding the first openly transgender four-star officer to serve in any of the uniformed services – Adm. Rachel Levine. The U.S. surgeon general congratulated her as the first female four-star officer to serve in the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps.
Banks, from Columbia City, first tweeted that the “title of first female four-star officer gets taken by a man.”
Twitter censored that tweet Saturday due to “hateful conduct.” The rule says an account cannot promote violence against, threaten or harass other people on the basis of race, ethnicity, national origin, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, religious affiliation, age, disability or serious disease.
Banks' second tweet from Tuesday remains up. It says “calling someone that was born and lived as a man for 54 years the first 'female' four-star officer is an insult to every little girl who dreams of breaking glass ceilings one day.”
Right-wing conservative Banks often gets attention for his fiery tweets. It has become part of his brand as a supporter of former President Donald Trump.
Tuesday's tweets generated thousands of retweets, likes and comments. The Indianapolis Star wrote a story about the tweets and a Star staffer posted it, calling Banks' tweets “transphobic.”
That drew the attention of Donald Trump Jr., who intervened with this shot across the bow:
“OUT: Follow the science. IN: Biological facts are transphobic.”