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keithellisonofficialRep. Keith Ellison can’t catch a break.

Ellison, a Democrat from Minnesota, is running for chair of the Democratic National Committee. He is also the first Muslim to be elected to Congress.

Stung by Hillary Clinton’s defeat in the presidential election, Democrats are pondering the future and searching for a new leader and Ellison, for better or worse, has emerged as a leading contender.

Ellison is a polarizing figure. Depending on who you talk to, Ellison is either a thoughtful Muslim bridge-builder or an anti-Semite who doesn’t support Israel.

And now Ellison will face a formidable challenger: Labor Secretary Tom Perez plans to run against Ellison after White House aides urged Perez to enter the race.

Craig Kirby, a former Democratic operative who has directed numerous political campaigns across the country, said Democrats need immediate stability.

“When in trouble, it doesn’t matter the race or creed of the leader,” Kirby told me. “Democrats just need help.”

Ellison’s involvement with the Nation of Islam has become a point of contention with Jewish groups like the Anti-Defamation League and critics who say his past writings and comments could be interpreted as anti-Israel. Ellison also helped organize the Minnesota delegation to the Million Man March in 1995, which was led by Minister Louis Farrakhan.

“Minister Farrakhan is a role model for Black youth,” Ellison wrote in an Insight News op-ed in 1995. “He is not an anti-Semite.”

But the head of the Anti-Defamation League said Ellison’s past comments in 2010 questioning Israel’s legitimacy are troubling.

“Rep. Ellison’s remarks are both deeply disturbing and disqualifying,” Jonathan A. Greenblatt, CEO of the ADL, said in a statement.

Ellison does have his supporters and they include Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Sen. Bernie Sanders, a Democrat from Vermont.

“My friend Keith Ellison is a terrific leader and a strong progressive who knows how to get things done,” outgoing Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev) said in a statement. “Now is the time for new thinking and a fresh at the DNC. Now is the time for Keith.”

But it appears that one powerful entity is not backing Ellison: The White House. According to published reports, President Barack Obama’s advisors have talked about whether Labor Secretary Thomas E. Perez and former Gov. Jennifer Granholm of Michigan would be willing to run for the job.

Ellison’s critics also say he can’t continue as a representative in Congress and run the DNC. In the past few days, however, Ellison said he will quit Congress if he wins the election for DNC chair, a strategic move he hopes will quiet the skeptics.

Only time will tell.

“Keith Ellison offers a new opportunity for the DNC to recast and re-energize itself after a devastating defeat,” said Neil Foote, a professor of journalism at the University of North Texas. “The Party will need to sharpen its message – and queue up a viable candidate for 2020.”

The DNC election is scheduled for Feb. 23.

What do you think?

PHOTO: Official Portrait

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7 thoughts on “Rep. Keith Ellison: Muslim Mediator Or Bigot?

  1. The Democratic Party is the party of the Klan all the way back to the Klan’s founder Nathen Bedford Forest, Alabama Gov George Wallace, Bull Conner, Al Gore’s daddy
    And more recent times the DNC racist e-mail leaks which cost the former chair her job
    So if Ellison is racist he will fit right in

    • Dr. Larry on said:

      I’m not looking for accolades, nor does the Scholar take delight in calling out the weak minded among us. But it must be done in order to have constructive dialog and press forward on the core issues that degrade out communities and quality of life. The frail of mind and spirit will look outward for root causes, police, white privilege, slavery, etc… They, by choice, or blind faith, will ignore the decaying black infrastructure, that we alone are responsible for. Black teenagers with the highest pregnancy rate in the world, highest HS drop out rate, unemployment, drug addiction, crime, single parent households, dependency on social welfare programs, don’t value education. I could go on, but it starts to depress me. We have failed as a race in a country where immigrants come with less than us, and surpass blacks in mere years. President Trump has laid out plans to make inroads on all of these issues in time, but the haters turn their back. Content to wallow in poverty and crime, rather than give credit and support to a rich white man.
      I’m reminded of the movie, “The Blind Side:, where a wealthy, philanthropic, white family reached out and took in Michael Orr (Baltimore Ravens). Taught him the value of education, self respect, hard work, and what a real family structure can accomplish. It is a true story and a wonderful movie, yet it never was featured in black theaters. Why? Because we didn’t want to see or acknowledge white people succeeding where we couldn’t. We would have preferred Mr. Orr fail among us, rather than succeed with whites. Think about the sickness of that for a moment. It’s unfathomable, yet it’s exactly how many blacks are treating President Trump. They’d rather see this country fail, than it succeed under a white. Look for the telltale signs from these haters, “Trump is racist,, bigot, bitch, hates women, Muslims, blacks, orange Hitler, pu@@y grabber, slut wife, etc….” They are easy to spot, live a sad pathetic existence, and will continue to do so, because they’ll be dammed if whitey will get credit for helping them. Though they gladly accept whiteys welfare check every month.
      -Holla’

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