Judge Karen Herman’s campaign signs defaced with swastikas days before the election

Published: Nov. 10, 2022 at 9:04 PM CST|Updated: Nov. 11, 2022 at 8:27 AM CST
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NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - Someone defaced Judge Karen Herman’s campaign signs with swastikas just days before the election. As law enforcement investigates, Judge Herman says the cruel act is a hate crime that’s affected her and her family.

“About 10 days before the election, I got a screenshot of one of my four-by-eight signs on a street and it was covered with a giant swastika and my heart just dropped. I mean I could feel it in the pit of my stomach. It’s just heartbreaking,” said Herman.

She says it became clear that someone specifically targeted her as a Jewish woman when she went to see her defaced sign in person.

“It was like a line of chain link fence.. with like six signs. All of them were pristine and right smack in the middle, there’s a big ole swastika all over my name,” Herman said.

Judge Herman says that the symbol is a sign of hate. It’s affected her and her family throughout the campaign and even now after she’s won the seat.

“To be called out based on my religion, it just really broke my heart. I’m a first-generation American and both sides of my family left their countries based on persecution because of their faith and to see this brought up in 2022, it’s just appalling.”

About half a dozen of her signs were defaced, and her campaign team rushed around town pulling them down.

Judge Herman says law enforcement is now investigating it as a hate crime.

Lindsey Friedmann is the regional director of the Anti-Defamation League and points to a report that tracks threats to elected officials.

“We studied over 10,000 data points and we found that there were 400 incidents of elected officials being targeted with harassment,” Friedmann said.

They also found that women, who are elected officials are targeted more often than men.

“To see that both women and elected officials are being targeted is generally a threat to our democracy, says a lot about what it now takes to run for office. What you are now putting out there and putting on the line to say that I want to be a public servant,” said Friedmann.

Judge Herman hopes whoever did this is caught soon, fearing what else they could be capable of.

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