(JTA) — Sen. David Perdue, a Georgia Republican, removed a campaign ad from Facebook that showed an image of his Jewish challenger, Jon Ossoff, with his nose apparently elongated.
Photos of Ossoff and New York Sen. Chuck Schumer, a fellow Democrat and also Jewish, appear under the heading in all capitals “Democrats are trying to buy Georgia! Help David Perdue Fight Back.”
The ad follows a string of incidents shining a light on the anti-Semitic canard of Jews using money to control politics.
A spokeswoman for Perdue said in a statement Monday that the ad was an “unintentional error” by an unnamed vendor outside of the campaign and the image has been removed from Facebook. The ad ran for five days before it was deleted.
“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 spokeswoman said.
Ossoff responded with a statement that he also posted on Facebook.
“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. Senator, literally no one believes your excuses,” Ossoff said.
The Forward first reported that the image appeared manipulated, noting that it was taken from a 2017 Reuters photo. Graphic design experts told the Forward that the nose in the image was manipulated while the rest of the face remained the same. The Perdue campaign said the distortion occurred when the photo was resized and filtered.
Ossoff, who once interned for the late Rep. John Lewis, was endorsed by the late civil rights leader.
He lost a close 2017 race for the U.S. House of Representatives in suburban Atlanta.