WWII Veteran Says Senator Heidi Heitkamp Is Using His Image Without Permission


FILE -- Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D-N.D.) during a hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, Aug. 16, 2018. Heitkamp, an endangered Democrat, ran an ad criticizing her opponent for comments about sexual abuse. But it backfired, just three weeks before the midterms. (Erin Schaff/The New York Times)

Recently Senator Heidi Heitkamp’s campaign re-victimized a number of sexual assault survivors by using their names in a print ad without their permission.

Some of those women said their assaults were made known to friends, family, and acquaintances for the first time because of that ad, causing a great deal of embarrassment. Some say they now fear their attackers will know where they’re livings. Others said they aren’t victims at all, and do not support Heitkamp.

Now it appears as though the Senator is in hot water again for using someone in her messaging who simply does not want to be there.

Last year Minot resident Lynn Aas was presented with the Legion of Honor by France for his service during WWII. In a recent Facebook post, published as Senator Heitkamp tours the state touting her record on veterans issues, the incumbent used an image of Aas and the occasion of his honor to talk about her own work:

Apparently this was done without Aas’ permission, and his family says he isn’t happy about it.

“Lynn is not happy that Heidi did this. We have posted a comment requesting that it be taken down,” David Aas, Lynn’s son, told me in an email this afternoon. “Lynn wants to make it clear that no one from the Heitkamp campaign contacted him to ask for permission for this, and he does not want this to be viewed as an endorsement of her campaign.”

I’ve reached out to the Heitkamp campaign for comment. I’ll update if I hear back, though they don’t typically respond to my inquiries.