The gospel according to Keith

Minnesota Fifth District Rep. Keith Ellison is the first Muslim elected to Congress and one of its leftwardmost members. I wrote a backgrounder on him for the Weekly Standard just before he was elected to Congress and posted “Keith Ellison for dummies” on Power Line as a companion to the Weekly Standard article. Ellison is a key to understanding the Age of Obama, a thesis I explored in “From Keith Ellison to Barack Obama.”

Ellison is a little bit hustler, a little bit thug, and a lot of Marxist claptrap wrapped with an Islamic overlay. Which branch of Islam is it that squares with equal rights for women, gay marriage, abortion on demand and the rest of the Democratic platform? Perhaps some day an enterprising journalist will inquire politely of Rep. Ellison and get the scoop. In the meantime, consider this recent letter from Ellison to a constituent, forwarded by a friend:

Dear [name redacted],

Thank you for contacting me regarding equal rights for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) Americans. I am honored to hear from you and proud to represent you. Since coming to Congress, I have been working very hard to advance my policy agenda based on four key priorities—peace, prosperity for working families, environmental sustainability, and support for human and civil rights.

As you know, the American Pledge of Allegiance ends with the words “with liberty and justice for all.” I take those words seriously. “For all” means equal rights for everybody, including the LGBT community. This is what informs my position on full LGBT rights. Our nation’s strength lies in our diversity. America succeeds when we endorse and champion policies of inclusion, not exclusion. I am committed to ensuring that all Americans, regardless of race, class, creed, ethnicity, sexual orientation or identity, are guaranteed equal rights.

For this reason, I believe the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), a discriminatory law that denies same-sex couples federal benefits, including Social Security, health benefits, family and medical leave, and equal protection under the law, must be overturned. In the last Congress, I was proud to be an original co-sponsor of the Respect for Marriage Act (H.R. 1116), which would repeal DOMA. I plan to be an original cosponsor of that bill when it is re-introduced. I am hopeful that the Supreme Court will repeal DOMA when it reveals its decision.

I am also proud of many Minnesotans’ efforts in November to stop a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage in Minnesota. I hope that Minnesota soon enacts marriage equality for our families, and I am heartened by the positive action taken by the state legislature so far this year.

As Vice-Chair of the Congressional Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Caucus, I will continue to be a strong advocate for individuals who suffer discrimination under unjust laws and practices and are denied their civil rights. Please know that I will maintain an active role in the fight against all forms of discrimination as long as I serve you in Congress.

Thank you again for contacting me. Please do not hesitate to contact me with any issue of concern. You can also sign up for our e-newsletter by visiting our website at

Sincerely yours,

Keith Ellison
United States House of Representatives

You have to love Ellison’s explication of the Pledge of Allegiance and the significance he attributes to it as something like organic law. Where did that come from? And I bet you didn’t even know there was such a thing as a Congressional Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Caucus. It may not seem like it on the surface, but there is actually much we can learn from Rep. Ellison.

UPDATE: The patriotic theme looms large in the legend Ellison seeks to create for himself. Today’s Star Tribune reports that Ellison’s forthcoming (in September) autobiography is titled My Country, ‘Tis of Thee. You can be sure we’ll be taking a close look at the book as soon as it is available for review.


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