Oct 24, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Twitter suspends Rep. Jim Banks for misgendering transgender four-star officer

Rep. Jim Banks. Photo: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call via Getty Images

Twitter suspended the account of Rep. Jim Banks (R-Ind.) Saturday after he intentionally misgendered Assistant Secretary of Health Rachel Levine, the first openly transgender Senate-confirmed federal official, a spokesperson for the platform told Axios.

What they're saying: "The account referenced has been temporarily locked for violating our Hateful Conduct Policy," the spokesperson wrote. "The account owner is required to delete the violative Tweet before regaining access to their account."

  • Twitter updated its policy in 2018 to prohibit the "targeted misgendering or deadnaming of transgender individuals."

Driving the news: Levine was sworn in last week as the admiral of the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps, making her the nation's first openly transgender four-star officer and first female four-star admiral.

  • Reacting to the news on Twitter, Banks wrote that the historic honor had been taken by a "man," per NBC News.

Banks railed against the suspension on his personal account, tweeting that he had written a "statement of FACT" and that "Big Tech must be held accountable!"

  • The Indiana representative said he'll be tweeting from his personal account from now on: "I won’t back down."
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