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Girl Scouts respond to backlash over since-deleted tweet celebrating Amy Coney Barrett: 'We are neither red nor blue'

The Girl Scouts organization is clarifying its stance on women’s empowerment after facing controversy for a statement congratulating recently confirmed Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett on Wednesday.

“Congratulations Amy Coney Barrett on becoming the 5th woman appointed to the Supreme Court since its inception in 1789,” the since-deleted tweet read alongside an image of Barrett and the four other justices who came before her: Sandra Day O’Connor, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan. Instead of celebratory responses, however, the Girl Scouts’ message was met with replies from critics saying Barrett’s conservative views were at odds with the organization’s message of girl power.

Many pointed specifically to the threat that the justice represents toward women’s reproductive rights, LGBTQ rights and the nation’s response to climate change; some even threatened to boycott the organization. Within hours, the organization’s initial tweet was deleted and replaced with an explanation.

The Girl Scouts clarified that it was “not our intent” for the tweet to be viewed as a “political and partisan statement,” explaining that it is a “nonpolitical, nonpartisan organization.” A Girl Scouts USA spokesperson elaborated in a statement to Yahoo Life.

“We have a legacy of highlighting women who have risen to the top of their fields including leaders of both political parties and our judicial branch. It was in this tradition that we congratulated Justice Barrett (as we have for Justices Kagan, Sotomayor, Ginsburg and O’Connor),” the spokesperson said. “This has been construed to be a political statement, but that was not our intention and we removed the post to minimize the negative conversation. For over 100 years we have and will continue to work for equality and to break down barriers for girls everywhere and support increasing the presence of women across all levels of government.”

People on Twitter continued to criticize the organization for both backtracking and posting in support of the controversial figure in the first place.

This isn’t the first time that the Girl Scouts have faced criticism for seemingly taking a political stance, as the organization’s plans to take part in the Inaugural Day festivities for President Donald Trump in 2017 were met with a petition urging it to abstain.

In 2015, the organization also faced backlash for its transgender-inclusion policy, which it quickly defended. “Girl Scouts has valued and supported all girls since our inception in 1912. There is not one type of girl. Every girl’s sense of self, path to it, and how she is supported is unique,” a GSUSA representative said at the time.

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Judge Amy Coney Barrett speaks after President Donald Trump announced her as his nominee to the Supreme Court, in the Rose Garden at the White House, Saturday, Sept. 26, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

U.S. Supreme Court nominee Judge Amy Coney Barrett removes her face mask when she returns from break during the second day of her confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., U.S., October 13, 2020. Kevin Dietsch/Pool via REUTERS TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., leaves after final roll call vote to put Amy Coney Barrett on the Supreme Court, at the Capitol in Washington, Monday, Oct. 26, 2020. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Ky., flashes his thumbs up as he leaves the chamber at the Capitol after a vote confirming Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court, Monday, Oct. 26, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

Republican Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) speaks during a press conference after Supreme Court nominee Judge Amy Coney Barrett was confirmed by the Senate as the 115th justice to the Supreme Court on Capitol Hill, October 26, 2020 in Washington, DC. - The US Senate confirmed conservative jurist Amy Coney Barrett as the Supreme Court's newest justice, delivering a landmark and controversial win for President Donald Trump just eight days before the election. (Photo by Olivier DOULIERY / POOL / AFP) (Photo by OLIVIER DOULIERY/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., speaks during the confirmation hearing for Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett, before the Senate Judiciary Committee, Thursday, Oct. 15, 2020, on Capitol Hill in Washington. (Shawn Thew/Pool via AP)

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., listens as ranking member Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., talks as the Senate Judiciary Committee hears from legal experts on the final day of the confirmation hearing for Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Oct. 15, 2020. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

WASHINGTON, DC - OCTOBER 14: Chairman Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) looks on as Supreme Court nominee Judge Amy Coney Barrett testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee on the third day of her Supreme Court confirmation hearing on Capitol Hill on October 14, 2020 in Washington, DC. With less than a month until the presidential election, President Donald Trump tapped Amy Coney Barrett to be his third Supreme Court nominee in just four years. If confirmed, Barrett would replace the late Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. (Photo by Bonnie Cash-Pool/Getty Images)

WASHINGTON, DC - OCTOBER 13: Supreme Court nominee Judge Amy Coney Barrett displays her blank notepad after Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) asked question about note taking during the second day of her Senate Judiciary committee confirmation hearing on Capitol Hill on October 13, 2020 in Washington, DC. Barrett was nominated by President Donald Trump to fill the vacancy left by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg who passed away in September. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett holds up a notepad of paper during her confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Oct. 13, 2020. (Brendan Smialowsi/Pool via AP)

Supreme Court nominee Judge Amy Coney Barrett tests her microphone before resuming testifmony on the third day of her confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Capitol Hill on October 14, 2020 in Washington, DC. - After liberal icon Ruth Bader Ginsburg's death last month left the nine-member court with a vacancy, Trump has rushed to fill it at the height of his presidential election battle against Democrat Joe Biden. (Photo by Demetrius Freeman / various sources / AFP) (Photo by DEMETRIUS FREEMAN/The Washington Post/AFP via Getty Images)

U.S. Supreme Court nominee Judge Amy Coney Barrett is sworn in to testify before her U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, U.S., October 12, 2020. REUTERS/Leah Millis/Pool TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY

WASHINGTON, DC - OCTOBER 14: White House Counsel Pat Cipollone listens as Supreme Court nominee Judge Amy Coney Barrett testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee on the third day of her Supreme Court confirmation hearing on Capitol Hill on October 14, 2020 in Washington, DC. Barrett was nominated by President Donald Trump to fill the vacancy left by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg who passed away in September. (Photo by Caroline Brehman-Pool/Getty Images)

President Donald Trump walks with Judge Amy Coney Barrett to a news conference to announce Barrett as his nominee to the Supreme Court, in the Rose Garden at the White House, Saturday, Sept. 26, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

President Donald Trump adjusts the microphone after he announced Judge Amy Coney Barrett as his nominee to the Supreme Court, in the Rose Garden at the White House, Saturday, Sept. 26, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

US President Donald Trump walks by Judge Amy Coney Barrett(R) as she and some of her children gather in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, DC, on September 26, 2020. - Trump nominated Barrett to the US Supreme Court. (Photo by Olivier DOULIERY / AFP) (Photo by OLIVIER DOULIERY/AFP via Getty Images)

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit Judge Amy Coney Barrett, a law professor at Notre Dame University, poses in an undated photograph obtained from Notre Dame University September 19, 2020. Matt Cashore/Notre Dame University/Handout via REUTERS. THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY.

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit Judge Amy Coney Barrett reacts as U.S President Donald Trump holds an event to announce her as his nominee to fill the Supreme Court seat left vacant by the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who died on September 18, at the White House in Washington, U.S., September 26, 2020. REUTERS/Carlos Barria

WASHINGTON, DC - SEPTEMBER 26: Seventh U.S. Circuit Court Judge Amy Coney Barrett's family, including husband Jesse Barrett and their seven children, watch as President Donald Trump announces her as his nominees to the U.S. Supreme Court in the Rose Garden at the White House September 26, 2020 in Washington, DC. With 38 days until the election, Trump tapped Barrett to be his third Supreme Court nominee in just four years and to replace the late Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who will be buried at Arlington National Cemetery on Tuesday. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

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