Minnesota Governor Tim Walz stated on Sunday that he wants the state’s Attorney General, Keith Ellison, to be in charge of the case against Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin, the suspect in the May 25 homicide of George Floyd. The governor apparently prefers his AG, who is black, over Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman, who is white. According to Minnesota Public Radio, several state lawmakers from Minneapolis have written Walz to ask specifically that Ellison run the show.
Walz said this week that “when I spoke to the Floyd family, they were very clear they wanted the system to work for them. They wanted to believe that there was trust, and they wanted to believe that the facts would be heard and justice would be served. I can tell you in Minnesota having Keith Ellison as lead on the case, that will happen.”
Keith Ellison, 57, was the first Muslim to be elected to Congress, back in 2007. In 2017, his career suffered a setback when he failed in his attempt to replace Donna Brazile (Al Gore’s presidential campaign manager) as chairman of the Democratic National Committee. Ellison was chairman of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, and his competition against President Obama’s former Labor Secretary Tom Perez was viewed as a proxy war between the Clintons and Bernie Sanders (although Ellison was also endorsed by minority leader Sen. Chuck Schumer). The Clintons won.
On June 5, 2018, Ellison shifted a course and announced he would not seek reelection to Congress, but would run instead for the job of Minnesota’s Attorney General – which he won by more than 100,000 votes. Prosecuting the most hated man in Black America today, the police officer who pushed his knee against the lifeless corpse of an African American who was suspected of passing a counterfeit $20 bill, could push Ellison to the next level in America’s national politics.
Which takes us to the inevitable calculus of is he for us or against us, which, incidentally, took center stage when Ellison was seeking the DNC post, so things are relatively fresh in our browser history.
The first thing that comes to mind is, naturally, the Louis Farrakhan connection. In 1989 and 1990 Ellison wrote under the name “Keith E. Hakim” in the Minnesota Daily, a student newspaper, where he defended Farrakhan against the charges of racism and anti-Semitism. Mother Jones reported in 2017 that there was another pseudonym, “Keith X Ellison,” under which he defended Farrakhan against claims of anti-Semitism years later, in 1995 and again in 1997, at which point he really should have known better.
Ellison, for his part, tried to minimize his involvement with the Nation of Islam, of which he denied being a member, but a former NOI member from Minnesota, Minister James Muhammad, said Ellison wasn’t just a rank and file member—which would have been bad enough—but actually served as NOI’s “chief of protocol,” acting as a liaison between Muhammad and local communities.
Leftwing writer John Nichols wrote an impassioned defense of Ellison in 2017 titled “Keith Ellison is No Anti-Semite,” after, as he put it, “The Washington Post is now suggesting that Ellison would be a ‘controversial’ pick for DNC chair.”
Nichols argued that “the suggestion that Ellison, a Muslim who has been in the forefront of efforts to promote international dialogue and understanding, is a divisive figure who would have trouble working with Jewish Democrats is as absurd as it is unsettling.”
Ellison may not be a sworn anti-Semite, but he cannot seriously attempt to deny (as he did on Dec. 14, 2016 on MSNBC’s Morning Joe, see the above clip) his long-term affiliation with the most brazen Jew hater in America who isn’t wearing a white hood.
He did take the Israel junket, though. In 2007, Ellison joined House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer on a 6-day tour of Israel. Their group met with Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas. They went everywhere, except, as Ellison later complained, the Gaza Strip, which Israel said he couldn’t go to at the time on account of the violent clashes between Hamas and the PLO (Hamas won).
On February 19, 2009, just weeks after the end of Operation Cast Lead, Ellison visited Gaza to view firsthand the destruction from the war. He had only trite and predictable stuff to say afterwards: “The stories about the children affected me the most. No parent, or anyone who cares for kids, can remain unmoved by what [Rep. Brian Baird] and I saw here.” The next day, Ellison visited the towns of Sderot and Ashkelon, which had been hit by endless volleys of Qassam rockets, the thing that started the war. Naturally, that cause and effect connection did not stop Ellison from calling for an end to the Israeli siege on Gaza.
Taking up the most famous criminal prosecution in America today is expected to catapult Keith Ellison to the top of the same DNC he had failed to win three years ago. In today’s political environment, the sky is the limit for AG Ellison – unless he messes up, of course.