Social media giant Twitter has permanently suspended the account of a GOP congressional candidate after he tweeted a racist image targeting royal bride-to-be Meghan Markle.
Wisconsin Republican Paul Nehlen shared the offensive image from his Twitter account last Friday, which featured Markle sitting next to fiancé Prince Harry. A picture of Cheddar Man, Britain’s oldest complete skeleton who research recently proved had a dark complexion and dark curly hair was superimposed over the actress’ face. Markle is bi-racial.
“Honey, does this tie make my face look pale?” the image was captioned.
Nehlen’s photo drew immediate outrage from Twitter users, including actor Patrick J. Adams, who starred alongside Markle on the TV drama “Suits.”
“You’re a sad and sick man with no shame or class,” Adams wrote of the congressional candidate, who’s running to replace House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wisc). “Get a life. And don’t go anywhere near MM — she’s got more power, strength honor and compassion in her fingernail than you’ll ever know in this lifetime.”
Nehlen tried to quell the outcry with a tweet claiming he used the photo as a joke to protest science-backed articles proving “whites never existed.” He later issued a statement regarding his permanent suspension, accusing Twitter, the Anti-Defamation League and “foreign persons and entities” of unlawful election interference.
“Yesterday, Twitter banned me from its platform,” Nehlen wrote. “I am the second GOP congressional candidate within one month to be banned for lawful speech from a major social media platform … This is the epitome of interfering with a federal election.”
A Twitter spokesperson confirmed to Newsweek Monday that it had indeed banned the GOP candidate’s account, citing repeated violations of its terms of service.
According to HuffPost, Nehlen published a list of his critics on Twitter last month, claiming that most of them were Jewish. He later posted the names, telephone numbers and email addresses of critics who contacted his campaign to complain.