Twitter Permanently Suspends Accounts of Ilhan Omar’s Potential Challenger

Ms. Omar, who is one of the first Muslim women elected to Congress and is no stranger to threats, responded on Twitter.

“This is the natural result of a political environment where anti-Muslim dogwhistles and dehumanization are normalized by an entire political party and its media outlets,” she wrote on Friday. “Violent rhetoric inevitably leads to violent threats, and ultimately, violent acts.”

Ms. Omar’s office did not return requests for comment on Saturday.

The suspension this week raised eyebrows, as President Trump has repeatedly used Twitter to attack others and stoke outrage without facing consequences from the platform. Amid calls to terminate the president’s account, Twitter said in October that it would be lenient with world leaders who violate the rules, saying there was a clear public interest value to keeping their tweets.

Twitter’s suspension of Ms. Stella’s accounts may cause politicians to pay close attention to what they’re posting, one expert said.

“Twitter’s trying to send a message that, like, there’s a line you can cross in terms of violating our terms of services, and even though it’s politically uncomfortable for us to have to enforce these bans, we are going to do this,” Joshua A. Tucker, a professor of politics and co-director of the New York University Center for Social Media and Politics, said on Saturday.

Politicians may see this and act accordingly to avoid losing access to Twitter, he said.

Professor Tucker added that it was smart of Twitter to take action against someone who is not an office holder and is in a primary election, so the company could not be accused of interfering with a current public officeholder or affecting the outcome of a general election.

However, the suspension could work in Ms. Stella’s favor.

“Of course, this might help her by generating tons of national attention for her, and she may end up getting lots of donations from Republicans around the country who feel they want to take a stance against Twitter interfering,” he said.




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