Minnesota Congressman Keith Ellison is a leading contender to become the new Chairman of the Democratic Party. He’s garnered endorsements from party leaders such as NY Senator Chuck Schumer , Mass. Senator Elizabeth Warren and Vt. Senator Bernie Sanders .
A supporter of Lewis Farrakhan with a track record of being both anti-Israel and Antisemitism, should Ellison garner the spot it would be another signal of the Democratic Party moving to become the anti-Israel party, something recommended by the Center for American Progress back in 2011
As Caroline Glick recently wrote,
“Ellison’s association with the Nation of Islam dated back at least since 1989 and stretched at least until 1998. During that period, he not only knew about the Nation of Islam’s Jew hatred, he engaged in it himself.”
During Ellison’s run for congress in 2006, the The Washington Post reported that Ellison had defended Farrakhan against accusations of Antisemitism in 1989 and in 1990 as well as calling affirmative action a “sneaky” form of compensation for slavery, calling instead for reparations
Also during Ellison’s initial congressional campaign, Scott Johnson of the must-read site Power Line , exposed Ellison’s Antisemitism and work with Louis Farrakhan in a Weekly Standard piece. One incident he described, occurred in February 1997 when Ellison was a practicing attorney:
Ellison appeared as a local spokesman for the Nation of Islam with the last name “Muhammad.” He spoke at a public hearing in connection with a controversy involving Joanne Jackson of the Minnesota Initiative Against Racism (MIAR). Jackson was alleged to have said, “Jews are among the most racist white people I know.” Jackson denied making the statement or insisted that it had been taken out of context. Ellison appeared before the MIAR on behalf of the Nation of Islam in defense of Jackson’s alleged statement. According to the Star Tribune and the full text of the statement published in the Minneapolis Spokesman-Recorder, Ellison said:
Speaking for the Nation of Islam, Ellison appeared before the MIAR in defense of the truth of Jackson’s alleged statement. According to the Star Tribune and the full text of the statement published in the Minneapolis Spokesman-Recorder, Ellison said, ‘We stand by the truth contained in the remarks attributed to [Ms. Jackson], and by her right to express her views without sanction.’ He finished his comments with, “Also, it is absolutely true that merchants in Black areas generally treat Black customers badly.”
The last sentence alluded to another of Jackson’s alleged statements, providing a personal basis for characterizing Jews as “the most racist white people” she knew. Ellison’s May 28 letter acknowledges only that others supported Jackson’s alleged statement in that controversy while falsely denying that he himself did so.
Since entering congress Ellison has used every opportunity possible slam Israel.
For example, in 2010, Ellison convinced 53 other Democratic members of congress to sign the infamous “Gaza 54” letter to President Obama, which falsely accused Israel of humiliating and wreaking “collective punishment” on Gaza residents and demanded that President Obama should pressure Israel to lift the Gaza blockade
In 2014, Ellison was one of only 8 members of Congress voting against a bi-partisan bill to provide $225 million to Israel’s “Iron dome” missile defense system (vs. 395 who voted for it). Think about that one for a moment, how many times in recent years have 395 members of Congress agreed on anything?
Ellison is a featured keynote speaker at many BDS organization events including the American Friends Service Committee which runs a BDS boot camp, Progressives for Palestine, and is a favorite of the anti-Israel group ironically called Jewish Voice for Peace. In a rare occurrence of disagreeing with progressives, The Jewish Voice for Peace was named by the Anti-Defamation League as one of the 10 most anti-Israel organizations in America (I am sure their mothers are proud).
There are many more examples of Ellison’s, anti-Israel and anti-Semitic actions, plus his connection to Muslim Brotherhood/Hamas associated groups such as MAS, CAIR, and ISNA. (MAS even paid for his Haj to Saudi Arabia). But in the interests of keeping this post a readable size will be reserved for future posts.
Interestingly, while the Anti-Defamation League has made very public claims of Antisemitism against Trump adviser Steven Bannon based on one unsubstantiated charge by his ex-wife, the ADL has been silent about the possible election of Ellison as DNC chair despite his track record of defending Farrakhan’s Antisemitism, making anti-Jewish comments of his own, and his anti-Israel actions in the congress. But then again it is not surprising as in 2011 the ADL asked Jews to pledge not to criticize Barack Obama’s anti-Israel policies. Their treatment of Bannon vs. Ellison reinforces the ADL’s image as caring more about protecting progressive politics than protecting the Jewish people.
Ellison was on the 2016 Democratic Party platform committee and tried to insert language criticizing Israel for her “occupation” of Palestinian lands. Ellison’s attempt was defeated by Clinton supporters, possibly because they feared the language would cause Jewish donors and voters to recognize the former secretary of state’s history of opposing Israel.
After his defeat in the platform committee, Ellison went on complain in this interview with NPR’s Amy Goodman. During the interview he mourned his loss the occupation plank, and threw in some lies about the Jewish State and Gaza for good measure:
Rep. Keith Ellison: Well, I can—I can lay out in sum, summary. One is that we—that there were six members of the Democratic drafting committee from the Hillary Clinton campaign, five from Bernie Sanders, four from the DNC. We took the base document, and we made several amendments at the drafting committee. We heard testimony over the course of two days. A lot of it was really, really startling and important.
I think we have the best statement on Native American rights we’ve ever had. We have strong language that does critique the TPP, although it falls a little short of openly opposing it, which we tried to do but were not able to achieve. It takes a position in favor of $15 and a union for a federal minimum wage. It takes a position on a whole range of things, including the environment, that are progressive steps forward.
What did we not achieve? A complete opposition to fracking, we don’t have that. What is else not achieved? There are some things on some foreign policy fronts that I think would and could be better, some saber-rattling with regard to Iran that I don’t think is helpful and good to be in our platform. I think that it would be—I think that we could have had a clearer statement on two-state solution and the U.S.’s aspiration to have peace and security for both Israelis and Palestinians. I think we were a little bit weak on that.
Amy Goodman: Can you explain what you would like to see there, Congressmember Ellison?
Rep. Keith Ellison: Well, I think that it is important that, you know, the United States state that we don’t think that the occupation of the—what will be the Palestinian state should continue. I don’t think there’s any fear of using the O-word, if you will. I mean, Ariel Sharon used it. You know, the U.N. uses it. I mean, it’s a commonly used phrase to describe what’s going on. I think we could have also made some stronger statements about the—
Amy Goodman: What is that word?
Rep. Keith Ellison: Occupation.
Amy Goodman: That they’re not using the word “occupation”?
Rep. Keith Ellison: Right. I think that there is a humanitarian crisis going on in Gaza. In fact, you know, the—because of the electricity power plant has been destroyed, the sewage is not being processed, and raw sewage is going up into the Mediterranean. In fact, it’s so bad that it’s flowing up into north, and the Israeli desalinization plant is not able to use its—that plant, because of the sewage that is in the Mediterranean coming from Gaza, because Gaza cannot process their own sewage at this point, because of the horrible situation that is going on there. So, there are some more—so, things like that, I think, really could have been identified much more clearly.
What the Ellison forces did accomplish was to keep the pro-Israel planks removed in 2012 from being reinserted in 2012. Four pro-Israel planks were removed in 2012, but the Jerusalem is Israel’s capital provision initially removed in 2012, and added back during the convention over the objections of the delegates was left in the 2016 platform.
The pro-Israel planks eliminated in 2012, remaining out in 2016 include
- The United States and its Quartet partners should continue to isolate Hamas until it renounces terrorism, recognizes Israel’s right to exist, and abides by past agreements.
- The creation of a Palestinian state through final status negotiations, together with an international compensation mechanism, should resolve the issue of Palestinian refugees by allowing them to settle there, rather than in Israel.
- All understand that it is unrealistic to expect the outcome of final status negotiations to be a full and complete return to the armistice lines of 1949.
In 2011, Politico reported that the Center For American Progress (CAP) which was at the time run by Hillary Clinton’s future campaign manager John Podesta was fighting with the more mainstream Democrats about Israel. They want to change the party to the Anti-Israel party.
When one considers the “walk-backs” to the 2012 platform which were maintained in 2016, and the support for the anti-Israel, anti-Semitic Keith Ellison for the chairman of the Democratic Party, it seems as if the Center For American Progress is getting its way. The only remaining question is, will American Jewry which overwhelmingly (and sometimes blindly) supports the Democratic Party finally wake up and smell the truth.