Earlier this week, U.S. Senate candidate Vick Hartzler’s personal account on Twitter was suspended due to her comments about University of Pennsylvania swimmer Lia Thomas.
The Senate candidate’s campaign said she has no plans to delete a tweet in which she wrote, “Women’s sports are for women, not men pretending to be women,” even after Twitter said she won’t be able to tweet, retweet, follow or like posts until she does.
On Monday, Twitter suspended her account, saying the tweet in mid-February violated its rules against hateful conduct. The tweet included Hartzler’s TV ad targeting transgender people in sports and particularly University of Pennsylvania swimmer Lia Thomas.
Hartzler’s campaign wasted no time firing back at Twitter.
“It’s shameful, utterly ridiculous, and a horrible abuse of censorship by big tech giants to stifle free speech,” Hartzler’s campaign said in a statement, via The Kansas City Star.
Lia Thomas has been the target for many people over the past few months, but she is taking it in stride as she told Sports Illustrated that she’s “here to swim.”
“The very simple answer is that I’m not a man,” Thomas said. “I’m a woman, so I belong on the women’s team. Trans people deserve that same respect every other athlete gets.”
Thomas will compete for Penn at the NCAA Championships this month.