Tennessee commission votes to censure judge over anti-Jewish posts

“Judge Jim Lammey’s use of social media to spread racist and anti-Semitic articles breaches the public trust,” says U.S. Rep. Steve Cohen, a Jewish Memphis Democrat.

By World Israel News Staff

County commissioners in Tennessee have voted in support of censuring a criminal court judge who posted links to anti-immigration articles and anti-Jewish conspiracy theories on social media, according to the Associated Press and local media reports.

The Commercial Appeal newspaper reported that the Shelby County Commission voted Monday in favor of a resolution to ask the Tennessee Board of Judicial Conduct to issue a letter finding judicial misconduct against Criminal Court Judge Jim Lammey.

The Memphis judge reportedly posted multiple anti-immigration articles on Facebook. One article by David Cole tells Jews to “get the f— over the Holocaust” and calls Muslim immigrants “foreign mud.”

Judge Lammey wrote a letter to the commission saying “I adamantly deny the characterization of me by the local media and certain interest groups as being a Holocaust Denier, anti-immigrant and racist.”

“My best friend — who’s deceased now — was Jewish and I wouldn’t do that,” he reportedly said.

The County Commission does not have the power to remove Mr. Lammey as a judge, notes the Daily Memphian newspaper, but commissioners wanted to rebuke Mr. Lammey for his comments. Ten of the 13 commissioners sponsored the resolution.

The resolution to censure Judge Lammey was presented after a coalition of more than a dozen organizations – including Jewish Community Partners, American Muslim Advocacy Council, the NAACP, Latino Memphis, and the Anti-Defamation League – condemned the judge. The coalition has also filed a complaint with the Tennessee Board of Judicial Conduct, calling for a public censure of Mr. Lammey.

U.S. Rep. Steve Cohen, a Memphis Democrat who is Jewish, also released a statement Monday condemning Judge Lammey’s actions.

“The public’s trust in our judicial system is paramount and such faith, once breached, is hard to rebuild,” Rep. Cohen said, in a statement published in the Daily Memphian.

“Judge Jim Lammey’s use of his social media accounts to spread racist and anti-Semitic articles and memes breaches the public trust. Judge Lammey should be held accountable,” said the U.S. congressman.