Tennessee Republican Rep. Marsha Blackburn kicked off her Senate race with an offensive and false ad attacking Planned Parenthood. But Twitter had the last word, blocking the ad for being "inflammatory."
Now that GOP Sen. Bob Corker of Tennessee is retiring, Republicans are defending another open seat. And the most obvious choice to replace him is Rep. Marsha Blackburn.
But her Senate announcement this week is off to a rocky start, with Twitter pulling her ad for being false and excessively offensive.
The ad features Blackburn boasting that she “fought Planned Parenthood and … stopped the sale of” fetal tissue. “Thank God,” she added. Twitter deemed the content “inflammatory” and has now taken the unusual step of refusing to let her run it on their platform.
Blackburn has a long record of extremism. She has embraced birtherism, claimed balancing the budget is more important than helping people who “have a Katrina,” and said she opposes gun safety because “hammers and hatchets” also kill people.
More recently, she was an architect of the bill that wiped out President Barack Obama’s landmark rules on Internet privacy.
But her most infamous crusade is against women’s access to reproductive health care. She supports banning abortion in nearly all cases, and has vowed to ban low-income women from using Medicaid or Title X grants for care at Planned Parenthood health centers.
Blackburn’s repugnant new ad refers to the work she did as chair of the House’s select committee on Planned Parenthood, where she led a baseless witch hunt against the organization for donating medical waste to scientists.
But her investigation found nothing, and her claim that fetal tissue was being “sold” turned out to be a complete lie — a lie that was parroted by a man who shot up a Planned Parenthood health center in Colorado, killing three people and injuring nine others.
Nevertheless, Blackburn’s work fueled the push by Republicans to cut off funding for Planned Parenthood in over a dozen states.
Having an ad pulled for incendiary falsehoods is not a great way to start a Senate campaign. Blackburn’s vicious lies and deceit bring shame to her state, and she has abused her power quite enough without seeking a new office to continue her despicable behavior.