Senator Temporarily Banned From TikTok After Twerking Video Goes Viral

Photo: Rhode Island Legislature, @mackdistrict6

The Rhode Island Senator who was suspended from TikTok after her twerking video went viral is dismissing the widespread criticism she has received.

Last week, Senator Tiara Mack faced extensive backlash for playfully campaigning for votes by twerking on the beach in a TikTok video.

The social media platform temporarily banned Mack's account as her twerking video garnered hundreds of thousands of views.

Now, the 28-year-old Providence Democrat is defending her TikTok and describing the criticism as “misogyny, classism, and racism,” per AP News.

“My behavior on my Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok are consistent with a young millennial who is in office and challenging norms,” Mack said. “I’m showing that leadership looks different and welcoming people into the many different facets of my life.”

Mack added that the eight-second clip was part of a series of videos shot with her friends on Block Island, a Rhode Island beach getaway.

“It was a way to show that elected officials can be silly and have fun and enjoy a day off,” Mack said.

Her TikTok account was restored after being banned from the platform Tuesday (July 12).

According to AP, a spokesperson for TikTok did not respond to comment on the reason for Mack's suspension.

However, the Rhode Island senator believes her account was banned because of a sex education bill she proposed earlier this year. The measure would require schools in the state to provide courses that “affirmatively recognize pleasure-based sexual relations, different sexual orientations and be inclusive of same-sex relationships.”

Various Republicans across the country have seized on the twerking video to slam Mack and the Democratic party.

But Mack said she has many supporters.

“My community stands in overwhelming support of me,” Mack said. “They know exactly what these attacks are and what these attacks can do, especially for a queer person of color.”

State Senator Jonathon Acosta (D) also tweeted in support, “It’s public that I’m out here casually drinking, smoking weed, and spending as much time shirtless as the summer sun will allow and it’s not an issue because I have a penis."

Most recently, Mack has been using the nationwide attention to call for closing the Black wealth gap with the hashtag #twerkingfor.

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