Senator Ron Johnson is suspended from YouTube for seven days. The Senator posted videos promoting unproven treatments for COVID-19.
“We removed the video in accordance with our COVID-19 medical misinformation policies, which don’t allow content that encourages people to use Hydroxychloroquine or Ivermectin to treat or prevent the virus,” a spokesperson for YouTube told The Hill.
YouTube has a three-strikes policy and will remove members from the community that violates their guidelines. In a blog post, the company said that it would not promote videos that “contradicts local health authorities or the World Health Organization’s (WHO) medical information about COVID-19.”
Johnson’s office said the comments were flagged from his Milwaukee Press Club appearance on June 3, in which he criticized the Trump and Biden administrations for “not only ignoring but working against robust research (on) the use of cheap, generic drugs to be repurposed for early treatment of COVID.”
Jonhson believes that his suspension is indicative of “Big Tech’s” power.
“YouTube’s ongoing Covid censorship proves they have accumulated too much unaccountable power. Big Tech and mainstream media believe they are smarter than medical doctors who have devoted their lives to science and use their skills to save lives. They have decided there is only one medical viewpoint allowed, and it is the viewpoint dictated by government agencies,” the senator said in a statement.
“How many lives will be lost as a result? How many lives could have been saved with a free exchange of medical ideas? Government-sanctioned censorship of ideas and speech should concern us all.”
Former President Donald Trump promoted hydroxychloroquine as a treatment for COVID-19 last year. Studies have shown that the drug is ineffective and does not treat COVID-19.
This isn’t the first time Johnson has run afoul of the platform. The website removed two videos of doctors testifying about early therapies to COVID before the then-Johnson-led Homeland Security Committee.