Keith Ellison for dummies revisited

I wrote the Weekly Standard article “Louis Farrakhan’s first congressman” and posted the companion Power Line post “Keith Ellison for dummies” in October 2006, when Ellison was on the verge of election to Congress representing Minnesota’s Fifth District. The latter piece includes some of the basic documents supporting my narrative of Ellison’s long association with the Nation of Islam.

I was provoked to write these pieces by the poor job the Minneapolis Star Tribune had done documenting Ellison’s troubling past. Indeed, I had been contacted by Minnesotans who had dealt with Ellison and were themselves frustrated by the errors and constraints of the Star Tribune’s coverage.

Ellison baldly suppressed his long involvement with the Nation of Islam in his 2014 memoir cum manifesto My Country, ‘Tis of Thee. In the book Ellison presented himself as a powerful critic of the Nation of Islam without a hint of his past work on behalf of the cult. I wrote about that in the Weekly Standard article “The Ellison elision.”

Today Politico’s Glenn Thrush essentially replicates the Star Tribune’s 2006 performance in the profile and podcast “Keith Ellison’s one-man march.” Glenn quotes Ellison, for example: “My youngest child is 20. Some of the things they want to hit me for, I was younger than her when I wrote them.” Talking about his piece this morning on Hugh Hewitt’s syndicated radio show, Glenn repeated this as a fact, attributing Ellison’s first articles as an advocate of the Nation of Islam to a time when Ellison was 19 or 20. This is simply false.

Glenn also blew off evidence that belies Ellison’s continuing cover-up such as his run for office in 1998 as Keith Ellison-Muhammad, a self-avowed member of the Nation of Islam. Glenn proclaimed, for example, “People’s religion [?] and what they give as their surname I couldn’t give a damn…” or words to that effect. Well, I think he ought to give a damn. They’re an important part of the true story.

The articles linked above summarize my basic research for readers who may be prompted to take a look at the controversy that Glenn’s article touches on from Ellison’s perspective.

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