By Chuck Ross
The Republican National Committee, Trump campaign and two Republican congressional committees all said Thursday they will not advertise on Twitter after the social media site locked Mitch McConnell’s campaign account for posting a video drawing attention to an activist condoning violence outside the Kentucky senator’s house earlier this week.
Twitter acknowledged Wednesday temporarily suspending the McConnell campaign’s account, @Team_Mitch, for posting the video, which was taken from the Facebook live feed of Black Lives Matter activist Chanelle Helm.
Helm is heard saying in the video that she wished someone would “just stab” a voodoo doll of McConnell “in the heart,” seemingly to provoke an injury in the Republican.
Helm also said on the video that she wished McConnell would suffer a stroke or heart attack or break his neck. Around 40 activists gathered outside McConnell’s home in Louisville, Kentucky, Monday to protest mass shootings in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio.
A Twitter representative told the Daily Caller News Foundation Wednesday that the McConnell account was locked and the video removed, because it violated the company’s “violent threats policy.”
The spokesperson said the policy is in force even when accounts are calling attention to threats of violence, rather than promoting them.
The RNC, Trump campaign, McConnell campaign, National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) and National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) all say they will withhold ad spending on Twitter until the company addresses the alleged anti-conservative bias.
Richard Walters, the RNC’s chief of staff, said on Twitter that the future ad spending “has been halted until they address this disgusting bias.”
The @GOP and @TeamTrump stand with the @Team_Mitch and the @NRSC. Anfuture ad $ either organization was planning to spend with @Twitter has been halted until they address this disgusting bias. https://t.co/IVXjjDkizA
— Richard Walters (@rww_gop) August 8, 2019
Kevin McLaughlin, executive director of the NRSC, echoed “not spending $ until this is adequately addressed.”
#MassacreMitch trended on @Twitter for a full day, and they did nothing. Someone threatens to stab the Majority Leader, @TeamMitch posts the video and THEY get locked out. @NRSC is not spending $ until this is adequately addressed. https://t.co/PeliVzz1hU
— Kevin McLaughlin (@KevinMcLaughlin) August 8, 2019
Parker Hamilton Poling, the executive director of the National Republican Congressional Committee, said the group will “halt all spending with @Twitter until they correct their inexcusable targeting” of the McConnell campaign.
I have directed the @nrcc to immediately halt all spending with @Twitter until they correct their inexcusable targeting of @Team_Mitch. We will stand firmly with our friends against anti-conservative bias. https://t.co/j2dhIkmWvb
— Parker Hamilton Poling (@parkerpoling) August 8, 2019
McConnell’s campaign, which is also suspending ad purchases, has spent $7,500 in ads since May 7, according to data Twitter tracked. The NRSC has spentmore than $23,000 since Aug. 29, 2018, while the NRCC has spent nearly $120,000 since Sept. 6, 2018.
Twitter data was not available for the Trump campaign and RNC.
The company did not immediately respond to a request for comment about Republicans’ plans for an ad boycott.
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