Arizona Republican Rep Paul Gosar has been rebuked and apparently deleted a tweet blaming the Texas school shooting on a “transsexual leftist illegal alien”.
On Tuesday, Mr Gosar tweeted that 19 children and two adults killed by a shooter at Texas’ Robb Elementary School were victims of a “transsexual leftist illegal alien”, according to screenshots of the post seen by HuffPost and Insider.
The tweet, which was baseless, followed in the wake of the deadliest mass shooting this year in the US, and the 27th shooting at a school.
The allegations had also appeared on Tuesday on 4chan, a far-right messaging board, where users falsely identified a trans person as the shooting suspect, as podcaster Matt Binder revealed on Twitter.
The trans Reddit user was afterwards forced to deny they were the Texas shooter, Mr Binder reported, after those false allegations were shared beyond 4chan.
“We know already fool. It’s a transsexual leftist illegal alien,” Mr Gosar allegedly wrote in the now-deleted tweet. “It’s apparently your kind of trash”.
The Republican was allegedly responding to a Twitter user who asked whether or not the Texas shooter was “the kind of trash that Reps Marjorie Taylor Greene and Paul Gosar travel to speak of?”
Both Mr Gosar and Ms Greene appeared at an event organised by Nick Fuentes, a white nationalist and founder of the America First Political Action Conference, in February.
Participants of the event were led in applause for Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and chanted Russian president Vladimir Putin’s name, as ABC News reported at the time.
Republicans, who have targeted trans and LGBT+ people with laws across the US, have largely rebuked calls by campaigners and US President Joe Biden for stricter gun control laws following the deaths of 19 children and two adults in Uvalde, a mainly Hispanic town.
“We don’t need more gun control. We need to return to God”, Ms Greene wrote in response to the shooting.
Mr Gosar was stripped of his House committee assignments last year following after he shared a disturbing animation depicting him killing fellow member of Congress and Democrat Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
He is Republican representing Arizona’s 4th Congressional District.
The Independent has contacted Mr Gosar for comment.