We have received a copy of the letter dated July 17 sent by Rep. Zach Wamp and Rep. Eric Cantor to Speaker Pelosi regarding Minnesota Fifth District Rep. Keith Ellison regarding his “Bushitler” comments last week. The Minneapolis Star Tribune reports on the letter here; the Hill reports on the letter this morning here. The Star Tribune notes that in addition the Anti-Defamation League has called on Ellison to retract the comments and apologize. In the letter, Reps. Wamp and Cantor write:
We are writing to express our outrage at the comments made by one of our colleagues, Representative Keith Ellison.
On Sunday, July 7, 2007, Rep. Ellison, speaking to a group of atheists, compared the attacks of September 11, 2001, to the burning of the Reichstag. The Reichstag fire of 1933 is believed to have been set by Nazis in an effort to turn popular opinion against the communists and justify Hitler’s emergency powers that ultimately led to the murder of six million Jews and many others.
Even if Rep. Ellison now asserts that he was not implying that 9/11 was orchestrated by the administration, the comparison he draws between Hitler and the President of the United States is disgraceful. It is intolerable that a member of the United States Congress would choose to exploit the worst attack on American soil as a means of political rhetoric.
Madam Speaker, we are sure you agree that while we are each entitled to our own opinion, references such as those by Rep. Ellison are beyond the pale of reasonable discourse.
We call on you to act swiftly and immediately reprimand Rep. Ellison for his flagrant and irresponsible comparison. These comments inflame hatred and division at a time when we should be promoting unity and reconciliation.
The mainstream media have studiously avoided reporting Ellison’s comments as well as the Wamp/Cantor letter. As we noted in “The Star Tribune does the Ellison hustle,” the Minneapoils Star Tribune has leapt to Ellison’s defense, explicating the deep truth of his comments. However imprudent Ellison’s remarks, congressional Democrats appear to agree with their substance. They share the views expressed by their flacks at the Star Tribune and their ilk. Speaker Pelosi’s response, or lack of it, to the Wamp/Cantor letter, may represent a clarifying moment in a disgraceful episode.
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