Following a complaint that she had broken Twitter’s Covid-19 misinformation regulations, Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene, a Republican from Georgia, had her personal Twitter account permanently disabled on Sunday.
Mr. Greene’s account was banned after she tweeted on Saturday about “very large quantities of Covid vaccination fatalities,” which turned out to be a fabrication. In addition, she included a false graphic that used data derived from a federal database of unverified raw data known as the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System, or VAERS. VAERS is a decades-old system that is based on self-reported instances from patients and health-care professionals.
It was reported that Ms. Greene had received a fifth “strike,” which indicated that her account would not be restored. In August, the business gave her a fourth warning after she made a misleading statement on social media claiming that immunizations were “failed.” In a little more than a month before that, Ms. Greene had been given a third strike for tweeting that Covid-19 was not hazardous and that vaccinations should not be mandatory.
Her suspension comes at a time when coronavirus cases in the United States have risen again, this time due to the highly contagious Omicron type. Officials stated on Saturday that New York State has documented more than 85,000 new coronavirus cases on the final day of the year 2021, the state’s largest one-day number since the epidemic started.
Twitter has long prohibited users from disseminating false information that might endanger others. Following the storming of the United States Capitol by a crowd of Trump supporters on January 6, the firm has in rare circumstances permanently blocked high-profile accounts, including the account of former President Donald J. Trump, due to a danger of “future instigation of violence.”
At this time, there is no indication that the coronavirus vaccinations are causing widespread serious adverse effects. A rare blood clotting problem has been connected to at least nine fatalities in the United States in the last year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Last month, the company’s vaccine was linked to dozens of cases and at least nine deaths in the country. The FDA suggested that alternative FDA-approved vaccinations be used in their place.
It has been claimed that the VAERS database, which is controlled by the Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, has been used in various coronavirus hoaxes to promote the notion that adverse effects from the Covid-19 vaccinations have been underreported.
Although a spokesman for the Food and Drug Administration refused to comment, she linked to an explanation of the VAERS database on the agency’s website, which said that VAERS reports “usually cannot be utilised to conclude whether a vaccination caused or contributed to an adverse event or disease.”
In March, Twitter implemented a policy that clarified the consequences of spreading false information regarding the virus and vaccinations. People who breach that policy are subject to increasing sanctions known as strikes, and if they continually spread false information about the virus, they may face a permanent suspension from the website.
Mrs. Greene was elected to the 14th Congressional District in Georgia in August 2020 after gaining national attention for her unwavering support for President Donald Trump and QAnon, an organisation associated with the baseless conspiracy theory that a group of global liberal elites is running a child sexting ring that Mr. Trump would put an end to.
“Q,” the anonymous online account that ignited the QAnon conspiracy movement, had previously been referred to as a “patriot” who was “worth listening to,” according to Ms. Greene, who shared the phrase on Facebook and Twitter on a number of occasions. She extensively supported the erroneous allegation that Mr. Trump’s 2020 presidential election had been stolen from him over the previous year, tweeting in January that there had been “mass voter fraud on a scale that should alarm every American, regardless of political party,” among other things.
However, it was Ms. Greene’s incorrect statements regarding the coronavirus, especially her opposition to vaccinations and face masks as methods to combat the pandemic, that ultimately led to her suspension from the social media platform. Ms. Greene stated in July that Covid-19 was not harmful to patients unless they were fat or above the age of 65, and that immunizations should not be mandated.
She stated that there were “too many reports of infection and the spread of the coronavirus among vaccinated people,” and that vaccines were “failing” and “do not reduce the spread of the virus & neither do masks.” She also stated that vaccines were “failing” and “do not reduce the spread of the virus & neither do masks.”
It suited Ms. Greene, according to Imran Ahmed, the chief executive of the Center for Countering Digital Hate, which published research on the dozen most prominent social media influencers spreading misinformation about vaccines. Mr. Ahmed believes that Ms. Greene’s suspension was part of a pattern of moves by Twitter to censor conservatives.