Twitter has locked the campaign account of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell for sharing a video that shows protestors calling for violence against McConnell outside of his home. Twitter's decision represents yet another example of the company engaging in actions that could potentially influence the 2020 US presidential elections.
Twitter is one of the main tools politicians use to communicate with constituents and spread their message. Losing access to their account can prevent them from reaching millions of potential voters and possibly swing election outcomes.
The video that caused McConnell's campaign account to be locked featured Black Lives Matter Louisville leader Channelle Helm and other protestors outside of his home. In the video, Helm can be heard saying “Just stab the mother f***er” in the heart.”
McConnell's campaign manager Kevin Golden has responded to being locked out of the account by saying:
“This morning, Twitter locked our account for posting the video of real-world, violent threats made against Mitch McConnell. This is a problem with the speech police in America today.”
Golden added: “Twitter will allow the words of “Massacre Mitch” to trend nationally on their platform, but locks our account for posting actual threats against us.”
In a statement to The Daily Caller, a Twitter spokesperson said the account had been locked for violating Twitter's violent threats policy, regardless of the context:
“The user was temporarily locked out of their account for a Tweet that violated our violent threats policy, specifically threats involving physical safety.”
Golden also said that McConnell's campaign team have appealed the decision but it was rejected by Twitter and the account will remain locked until they delete the video.
Twitter's decision to lock McConnell's account comes shortly after it was reported that the White House is drafting an executive order to tackle anti-conservative bias. It also comes less than two months after Twitter announced new changes that may hide some of Trump's tweets.