YouTube has suspended Sen. Rand Paul, R-Kentucky, from its platform for seven days after Paul violated the site's policy on COVID-19 misinformation.
According to NBC News and CNN, YouTube suspended Paul after he made the false claim in a video that cloth masks "don't work" and "don't prevent infection" against COVID-19.
"This resulted in a first strike on the channel, which means it can't upload content for a week, per our longstanding three strikes policy," a YouTube spokesperson told CNN. "We apply our policies consistently across the platform, regardless of speaker or political views, and we make exceptions for videos that have additional context such as countervailing views from local health authorities."
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization have said for well over a year that facial coverings, including cloth masks, prevent the spread of droplets containing COVID-19 from the mouths and nasal passages of people infected with the virus.
In response, Paul called YouTube's ban a "badge of honor."
"Leftwing cretins at Youtube banning me for 7 days for a video that quotes 2 peer reviewed articles saying cloth masks don't work," Paul tweeted.
According to NBC News, Paul later claimed in a post on the conservative website Liberty Tree that he "hadn't spread misinformation."
"I haven't lied. I haven't used expletives. I haven't spread misinformation. I have only told the truth about what our government seeks to do to us, curtailing our most basic liberties, using the COVID-19 pandemic as their excuse," Paul said according to NBC News.
Paul's suspension comes days after Twitter temporarily suspended Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, R-Georgia, for falsely claiming that COVID-19 vaccines are "failing." Greene has been suspended from Twitter multiple times since taking office earlier this year.