- The Washington Times - Friday, November 23, 2018

Laura Loomer is the latest far-right figure to threaten litigation against Twitter, taking aim at the social networking service after being suspended as a result of a recent tweet criticizing Rep.-elect Ilhan Omar, Minnesota Democrat.

An activist and self-described investigative journalist, Ms. Loomer said she plans to sue Twitter for punting her from the platform Wednesday over a tweet that targeted Ms. Omar, a Somali immigrant and the first Muslim former refugee elected to the U.S. House of Representatives.

“The reason I was suspended was simply for telling the truth,” Ms. Loomer, 25, said in a video statement. “I’ve been silenced in America. I’ve been silenced as a journalist for reporting the truth. It’s egregious.”

Ms. Loomer said that Twitter told her that her account was suspended because a recent tweet accusing Ms. Omar of being anti-Jewish and supportive of Sharia law and female genital mutilation violated the platform’s rules against hateful conduct.

“You may not promote violence against, threaten or harass other people on the basis of race, ethnicity, national origin, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, religious affiliation, age, disability or serious disease,” Twitter told Ms. Loomer, according to a screenshot she shared on Facebook.

Twitter does not comment on individual accounts for privacy and security reasons, a company spokesperson told The Washington Times.

Ms. Loomer had more than 260,000 followers on Twitter prior to being suspended, she said in the video statement.

Citing similar suspensions handed to fellow right-wing media figures including former Brietbart editor Milo Yiannopoulos and Infowars publisher Alex Jones, Ms. Loomer called Twitter’s latest action a “tipping point” toward litigation.

“I am going to be filing a lawsuit against Twitter for this. Because this is egregious and its gone too far and they’ve done this to too many people,” she said in the YouTube video.

“Everything I said is 100 percent true. There’s not one thing in that tweet that isn’t true,” she added.

Twitter permanently banned Mr. Yiannopoulos and Mr. Jones in July 2016 and September 2018, respectively, and critics of the company have cited other suspensions in the interim as evidence of the platform allegedly censoring right-wing users.

“You see, it’s not how right-wing you are. What matters is how effective you become,” Mr. Yiannopoulos, 34, said in a Facebook post. “The more people you convert and the more hypocrisy you expose, the bigger the target on your back. That’s why I was the first to go. And that’s how you know this isn’t accidental: it’s political warfare.”

Mr. Yiannopoulos previously said he planned to sue Twitter after his ban and intended to join a lawsuit being drafted on behalf of another permanently suspended user, Roger Stone, President Trump’s former election campaign adviser.  

Ms. Omar, 37, received about 78 percent of the vote during the Nov. 6 midterm elections in the House race against conservative activist Jennifer Zielinski.

Representatives for her campaign did not immediately return a message seeking comment.

• Andrew Blake can be reached at ablake@washingtontimes.com.

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