- In their dog-whistle attempts to appeal to a racist base of voters, Republicans have used what GOP campaign strategist Lee Atwater once referred to as the “Southern Strategy.” According to Atwater, as long as GOP candidates didn’t use the n-word, they could use hidden code words to stoke fear of black Americans, such as through a “tough on crime” narrative. That strategy is still alive and well in the GOP, as has been seen recently through cherry-picked images of protesters purported to be Black Lives Matter demonstrators burning buildings and toppling statues of slaveowners.
Senator David Perdue just ran an attack ad that artificially enlarged the nose of his Jewish opponent, Jon @Ossoff.
The ad claims that “Democrats are trying to buy Georgia.”
This is blatant antisemitism. It’s not an accident. It’s their platform.@Perduesenate, apologize now. pic.twitter.com/h0sOpllgHe
— Bend the Arc: Jewish Action (@jewishaction) July 28, 2020
In another example of this, the campaign of Sen. David Perdue (R-GA) released an ad against Perdue’s campaign challenger, Jon Ossoff. In the ad, which featured both Ossoff and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, the campaign warned that the two were “trying to buy Georgia!” and the nose of Ossoff in the photo of him has been clearly elongated. The economic political power of Jewish people has been a long-used anti-Semitic scare tactic, and Jewish people have suffered criticism of the size of their noses for some time.
CNN reports that:
‘Republican Sen. David Perdue’s campaign took down a Facebook ad that appeared to make Democratic candidate Jon Ossoff’s nose bigger, following accusations of anti-Semitism.
‘The Facebook ad, showing Ossoff next to Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer, said, “Democrats are trying to buy Georgia!”‘
BREAKING: Democrat Jon Ossoff is leading GOP incumbent David Perdue by 1 point in the latest poll of the U.S. Senate race in Georiga.
RETWEET if you support @ossoff as he runs to turn Georgia Blue and flip the U.S. Senate! pic.twitter.com/zkcpil5rS6
— Protect Robert Mueller ✊ (@DisavowTrump20) July 22, 2020
Ossoff responded to the ad, saying that the tactic was not new or original to Perdue’s campaign, but an old trope used to stoke fear of and dehumanize Jewish people. Perdue has since removed the ads from social media platforms.
‘Sitting U.S. Senator David Perdue’s digital attack ad distorted my face to enlarge and extend my nose. I’m Jewish. This is the oldest, most obvious, least original anti-Semitic trope in history.’
Republican Sen. Perdue of Georgia has taken down a digital campaign ad featuring a manipulated picture of his Democratic opponent Jon Ossoff, who is Jewish, with an enlarged nose. https://t.co/wnWIwvLY7r
— NBC News (@NBCNews) July 28, 2020
Perdue’s campaign responded by saying that they had removed the ad because the appearance of Ossoff’s nose was an inadvertent mistake made by “an outsider vendor” who created the ad. No mention of why two Jewish political figures were featured with a tagline that included those Jewish people “buying” an election.
‘Obviously, this was accidental, but to ensure there is absolutely no confusion, we have immediately removed the image from Facebook. Anybody who implies that this was anything other than an inadvertent error is intentionally misrepresenting Senator Perdue’s strong and consistent record of standing firmly against anti-Semitism and all forms of hate.’
The re-election campaign of Senator David Perdue of Georgia was assailed for a Facebook advertisement that enlarged the nose of his Democratic opponent, Jon Ossoff, who is Jewish https://t.co/MijSmqN6kh
— The New York Times (@nytimes) July 28, 2020
Featured image screenshot via YouTube