Keith Ellison

From KeyWiki
Jump to: navigation, search
Keith Ellison


Keith Maurice Ellison is a Democratic member of the United States House of Representatives, representing the 5th district of Minnesota. He is also a co-chair on the Congressional Progressive Caucus.

Keith Ellison has represented the Fifth Congressional District of Minnesota in the U.S. House of Representatives since taking office on January 4, 2007. The Fifth District includes the City of Minneapolis and the surrounding suburbs.

Ellison is a member of the Minnesota Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party (DFL). He previously served two terms representing Legislative District 58B in the Minnesota State House of Representatives, from 2003 to 2007.[1]

Background

Keith Ellison , was born and raised in Detroit, Michigan. He moved to Minnesota in 1987 to attend the University of Minnesota Law School, where he earned his law degree in 1990.[2]

Education

  • Bachelor of Arts in Economics from Wayne State University - 1987
  • Juris Doctor from the University of Minnesota Law School - 1990

Nation of Islam

1989–Ellison publishes the first of two articles in the University of Minnesota Daily under the alias “Keith Hakim.” In the first such article, Ellison speaks up for the Nation of Islam.

1995–Ellison supports Million Man March, appears at organizing rally with former Nation of Islam spokesman Khalid Muhammed at University of Minnesota. Ellison acts as local Nation of Islam leader in march at office of U.S. Attorney in Minneapolis protesting indictment of Qubilah Shabazz for conspiring to murder Louis Farrakhan. Ellison charges FBI with conspiring to murder Farrakhan. Ellison writes article under alias “Keith X Ellison” attacking Star Tribune for criticizing Louis Farrakhan.

In 1998, while running in State representative primaries Ellison, then known as Keith Ellison-Muhammad, was a member of the Nation of Islam.[3]

Ture speech

Ellison introducing Ture

1990–Ellison participates in the sponsorship of the anti-Semitic speech by Kwame Ture given at the University of Minnesota Law School (“Zionism: Imperialism, White Supremacy or Both?”). Ellison rejects the appeal of Jewish law students to withdraw sponsorship of the lecture.[4]

Ellison MCd the meeting, introducing Ture.[5]

Vice Lords gang

1992–Ellison appears as speaker at demonstration against Minneapolis police with Vice Lords leader Sharif Willis following the murder of Officer Haaf by four Vice Lords gangsters in September.

1993–Ellison leads demonstration chanting “We don’t get no justice, you don’t get no peace” in support of Vice Lords defendant on trial for the murder of Officer Haaf. Ellison attends Gang Summit in Kansas City with Willis.[6]

NLG speech

The various themes of Ellison's public commitments and associations all came together in a February 2000 speech he gave at a fundraising event sponsored by the Minnesota chapter of the far-left National Lawyers Guild, on whose steering committee he had served. The event was a fundraiser for former Symbionese Liberation Army member Kathleen Soliah after her apprehension in St. Paul (under the name "Sara Jane Olson") for the attempted murder of Los Angeles police officers in 1975.

Ellison weirdly referred to Soliah/ Olson as a "black gang member" (she is white) and thus a victim of government persecution. He described her as one of those who had been "fighting for freedom in the '60s and '70s" and called for her release. (She subsequently pleaded guilty to charges in Los Angeles and to an additional murder charge in Sacramento; she is serving time in California.) Still toeing the Nation of Islam line, he recalled "Qubilah Shabazz, the daughter of Malcolm X, [who] was prosecuted in retribution against Minister Farrakhan." He also spoke favorably of cop killers Mumia Abu-Jamal and Assata Shakur. (Shakur has been on the lam in Cuba since 1984; last year she was placed on the FBI's domestic terrorists list with a one million dollar reward for her capture.)[7]

Cair connections

2006 CAIR speech

August 2006–Ellison appears at unpublicized fundraiser with CAIR executive director and Hamas supporter Nihad Awad among featured guests.[8]

2011 CAIR speech

The Greater Los Angeles Area office of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-LA) hosted a community event in San Fernando Valley featuring the first Muslim U.S. Congressman Keith Ellison, who gave a keynote address on the theme, “Defending our Democracy.” The event also marked the Congressman’s first visit to the valley area.

Congressman Ellison shed light on the current anti-Muslim sentiment in society and how Muslims can effectively challenge it through education and activism. He delivered his remarks before a crowd of 150 community members at the Olympia Banquet Hall in Van Nuys.

The event, moreover, served an opportunity to share CAIR-LA’s advocacy work and strengthen outreach to the valley’s Muslim community. CAIR-LA Executive Director Hussam Ayloush expanded on the organization’s key grassroots efforts and community empowerment programs, such as engagement with the Japanese American community to organize Southland Muslims’ annual visit to Manzanar internment camp and the resulting high school learning exchange program that brings together Muslim and Japanese American youth.[9]

CAIR banquet speaker

Some 400 people turned out for the April 2013, 6th Annual Banquet of the Minnesota chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-MN).

The event, themed “Upholding the Constitution, Defending Civil Liberties,” included a silent auction, a networking social, an awards ceremony, and an opportunity to learn about CAIR-MN’s accomplishments in defense of civil rights over the past year.

In her welcome remarks, CAIR-MN Chair Ramla Bile spoke of CAIR-MN’s vision in creating a society in which all Americans are treated with respect and dignity. Senator Amy Klobuchar D-MN) and Congressman Keith Ellison (D-MN) were special guest speakers. Iowa state Representative Ako Abdul-Samad was the keynote speaker for the event.

The Master of Ceremonies was Phil Duran, incoming President of the Minnesota State Bar Association. The Courage Award was presented to community activist Dr. Richard Johnson and the Justice Works award was presented to attorney Jordan Kushner.

Banquet attendees included community members, leaders of mosques and Muslim organizations, business executives, and interfaith partners. This year’s banquet included 12 sponsors and over 20 table sponsors from local corporations, small businesses, law schools, and nonprofit organizations.[10]

J Sreet endorsement

In 2008 Ellison was endorsed by JStreet PAC.[11]

Congress

Keith Ellison was elected as co-chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus for the 112th Congress. Working together with other members of the Caucus, Keith helped shape historic Health Care Reform and Wall Street Reform, raise the federal minimum wage, start the process to end the War in Iraq, strengthen veterans’ benefits, combat hate crimes, and create guarantees of pay equality for women.

Ellison currently serves on the Financial Services Committee and the House Democratic Steering & Policy Committee. The Financial Services Committee provides oversight for the nation's housing and financial services sector. The Democratic Steering & Policy Committee decides committee assignments for Democratic Members and sets the Democratic Caucus' policy agenda. He previously served on the House Judiciary Committee in the 110th Congress (2007-2008) and the House Committee on Foreign Affairs in the 111th Congress (2009-2010).[12]

Communist Party approval

In August 2006, the Communist Party USA welcomed Ellison's probable election to Congress, comparing him to the late far left senator Paul Wellstone[13].

If Keith Ellison is elected in November to represent Minnesota’s 5th Congressional District, he will bring to the U.S. House of Representatives a fresh progressive voice in tradition of Paul Wellstone. He will also be the first African American congressman from Minnesota and the first Muslim in the U.S. Congress.
Ellison is a well-known civil rights attorney and an established progressive leader in the Minnesota House of Representatives. He received the Democratic Farmer-Labor (DFL) Party’s endorsement at the district convention in May, enjoys strong support from organized labor, and has been endorsed by the state AFL-CIO.
Peace and justice activists have been volunteering in increasing numbers in the Ellison campaign to refocus attention on Ellison’s program. Ellison calls for immediate withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq, a universal, single-payer health care system, protection and extension of civil rights to all, including gays and lesbians, and responsible stewardship of the environment.
In the Minnesota House, Ellison supported legislation to raise the minimum wage. He has spoken at peace rallies in the Twin Cities area. He pledged to fight all attempts to erode the Voting Rights Act. He founded the Environmental Justice Advocates of Minnesota.

Take Back America Conferences

Keith Ellison was on the list of 237 speakers at the 2007 Take Back America conference, which was organized by the Institute for Policy Studies, and Democratic Socialists of America dominated Campaign for America's Future.[14]

America's Future Now Conferences

Keith Ellison was on the list of speakers at the 2009 America's Future Now conference, which was organized by the Institute for Policy Studies, and Democratic Socialists of America dominated Campaign for America's Future.[15]

He was back in 2010.

Take Back the American Dream Conference 2011

Keith Ellison was one of the 158 speakers who addressed the Take Back the American Dream Conference 2011 . The Conference was hosted by the Institute for Policy Studies, and Democratic Socialists of America dominated Campaign for America's Future, [16]

Blue Green Alliance

The Blue Green Alliance sponsors the annual Good Jobs, Green Jobs Conference. The 2009 conference was held from Feb. 4-6, 2009.

Conference speakers included:[17]

Ellison was back in 2010.[18]

Michigan Coalition for Human Rights

Abayomi Azikiwe, Keith Ellison, April 6, 2008

Detroit Workers World Party leader Abayomi Azikiwe, greeted Congressman Keith Ellison of Minnesota, during the Michigan Coalition for Human Rights annual dinner on April 6, 2008. Azikiwe serves as chairman of the MCHR board.

Coalition of Black Trade Unionists conference

From May 22-25, 2008, the Communist Party USA founded Coalition of Black Trade Unionists held their 37th International Convention in St. Louis, Missouri.

Rep. Keith Ellison was one of the panelists from the Town Hall meeting:[19]

Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) urged delegates to put the housing crisis “in its proper context. We’ve had 30 years of frozen wages. However, in 1984 CEOs made 42 times more than the average worker. But in 2005 CEOs made 411 times more than the average worker. As a result we consume less and borrow more. Our wages stagnate, while the rich get richer.” Ellison called for a “grassroots movement married to legislation.” [20]

Congressional Progressive Caucus

As of February 20 2009 Keith Ellison was listed as Vice Chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus.[21]

Congressional Black Caucus

Keith Ellison is a member of the Congressional Black Caucus for the 113th Congress:[22]

Wellstone Action

In 2009 Keith Ellison was listed as a member of the Advisory Board[23] of Wellstone Action, a Minnesota based organization based on the political legacy[24] of that state’s late ‘progressive” Senator Paul Wellstone.

Wellstone Action and Wellstone Action Fund combine to form a national center for training and leadership development for the progressive movement. Founded in January 2003, Wellstone Action's mission is to honor the legacy of Paul and Sheila Wellstone by continuing their work through training, educating, mobilizing and organizing a vast network of progressive individuals and organizations.

21st Century Democrats support

21st Century Democrats is a Political Action Committee that has stood for Progressive causes for over 20 years. Founded in 1986 by Institute for Policy Studies affiliate, Iowa Senator Tom Harkin, Democratic Socialists of America affiliates, former Texas Agriculture Secretary Jim Hightower, and former Illinois Congressman Lane Evans. Its three main goals are to help elect progressive candidates, train young people about grassroots organizing, and lastly, to continue to support our elected officials after Election Day "through our comprehensive progressive network".

Long time Board chair was Democratic Socialists of America member Jim Scheibel, a former Mayor of Saint Paul, Minnesota.

The mission of 21st Century Democrats is to build a "farm team" of progressive populists who will be the future leaders of the Democratic Party.

In each election cycle, we endorse a diverse array of candidates who exemplify our values and show unusual promise to advance our progressive goals. We invest in some of the most competitive races as well as in some of the most challenging – those in which the candidates are outstanding but the traditional Democratic supporters are most reticent. We back candidates in primaries as well as general election races, and we focus the bulk of our resources on electing challengers and protecting vulnerable incumbents.[25]

Keith Ellison was one of 17 key progressives endorsed by 21st Century Democrats in the 2010 election cycle. [26]

Ellison was also supported in 2006.

Populist Caucus

The Populist Caucus was founded on February 11, 2009 in the United States House of Representatives by Democrat Bruce Braley of Iowa. The caucus originally included 26 other Democrats in the House, including Keith Ellison , vice chair.

Supported Lifting the Gaza Blockade

On Jan. 27, 2010, U.S. Representatives Keith Ellison and Jim McDermott led 52 other members of Congress in signing a letter addressed to President Barack Obama, calling for him to use diplomatic pressure to resolve the blockade affecting Gaza. [27] The entire letter together with a complete list of signatories can be read by clicking here.

Meeting with Activists from September 24, 2010 FBI Raids

Raided activists comment on the meeting

On Nov. 5, 2010, Minnesota Congressman Keith Ellison held a meeting with five of the activists who were raided by the FBI in September. "While unclear about what legislative action he could take on their behalf, Ellison conveyed dismay with the raids." The activists encouraged Ellison to circulate a "Dear Colleague" letter to other members of the Progressive Caucus asking for support of an investigation of the FBI actions. "Ellison reminded them that he could not interfere with an ongoing investigation."[28]

Sarah Martin, one of the activists who attended the meeting stated,

"It was a reasonably good meeting. He certainly understands the seriousness of this and although political times are pretty horrible right now... he's gonna pursue doing a "dear colleague" letter with the progressive caucus... He kept saying of course, he can't stop this Grand Jury but he's gonna do everything he can. He met with us! This is Congressman Keith Ellison, and he met with us in person and gave us you know, a good time - which is - didn't happen at the Senator's office."

Tracy Molm, another of the activists who attended the meeting stated,

"[We asked Ellison to write] a "dear colleague" letter to Obama directly... He said that he's going to look into a "dear colleague" letter, and try to get other progressive people in Congress to sign onto it also."

Committee to Stop FBI Repression delegation

In mid November 2010, a delegation from the Committee to Stop FBI Repression ( returned home from several days of bringing the "issue of the FBI raids and grand jury subpoenas of people doing international solidarity work and anti-war organizing to the U.S. Capitol". Three supporters of the Marxist-Leninist Freedom Road Socialist Organization/FightBack!, Deb Konechne of the Committee to Stop FBI Repression, Anh Pham, who is facing a reactivation of her subpoena and Joe Iosbaker, whose home was raided, spent two days meeting with U.S. Representatives on the issue. The delegation asked each Congressperson to sponsor a “Dear Colleague” letter condemning the raids and grand jury subpoenas. In the two days, the delegation met with either the Congressional Representative’s staff or the Representative themselves fro[[m the following 16 offices: Tammy Baldwin (WI), John Conyers (MI), Danny Davis (IL), Keith Ellison (MN), Raul Grijalva (AZ), Luis Gutierrez (IL), Mike Honda (CA), Jesse Jackson, Jr. (IL), Dennis Kucinich (OH), Barbara Lee (CA), Jim McDermott (WA), Jim McGovern (MA), Bobby Rush (IL), Linda Sanchez (CA), Jan Schakowsky (IL), Maxine Waters (CA). The "meetings were positive, with all the offices expressing genuine concern about the situation. In some cases, because of the outpouring of calls from around the country, the U.S. Representatives were aware that the delegation was in Washington D.C. and the offices made time on their schedules to meet with the delegation. This reinforces the continuing importance of the solidarity work taking place around the country."

Rep. Conyers (MI), chair of the Judiciary Committee, directed the Counsel of the Judiciary Committee to meet with the delegation. Also, Rep. Ellison (MN) and his Congressional staff met directly with the delegation for a significant amount of time. rep. Ellison sent a letter to U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, expressing concern over the situation and is continuing to work on options to support his constituents affected. The delegation also received face-to-face meetings with Rep Gutierrez and Rep Davis from Chicago. Rep. Grijalva’s (AZ) office set up a meeting between the delegation and the Executive Director of the Congressional Progressive Caucus in the Congress of which rep. Grijalva is the chair. In addition, the office of Jan Schakowsky (IL) and Maxine Waters (CA) gave the delegation significant time and attention.

“It was clear that progressive Representatives of the Congress are very concerned about the FBI investigation. Overall, they were very thankful for our visit and for the information and analysis given to them The level of awareness about the raids and grand jury was varied, from little to full awareness, but the delegation certainly changed that. After the two days, our presence and purpose definitely created a stir in the halls of Congress. “The fact that we were able to interact with 16 legislative aides or Congress people themselves, during an extremely busy time of restructuring leadership in the Congress, exemplifies the attention this matter is receiving”, stated Joe Iosbaker.[29]

"God Willing... Border Will Become an Irrelevancy"

Keth Ellison on border security

In June 2010, Ellison spoke at a Network of Spiritual Progressives conference, during which he stated,[30]

"No security policy position can be premised on military might. ...The way it works is we are a country guided by ideals of equity, generosity and engagement in our relations with other nations and those philosophical ideals create safe borders … and, God willing, one day the border will become an irrelevancy."

Also speaking at the conference was avowed Marxist Michael Lerner, editor of the pro-Palestinian Tikkun Magazine. According to an account of the conference by Baltimore Sun columnist Marta Mossburg, who attended the two-day event, Lerner compared tea party activists to Hitler at least five times. Another speaker at the Network of Spiritual Progressives event was Heather Booth, founder of the Midwest Academy, which teaches the community organizing tactics of radical Saul Alinsky.

Midwest Academy Awards

Ellisonmmmmmm.JPG

In 2011, Keith Ellison was honored with a "Progressive Leadership Award" by the Democratic Socialists of America controlled Midwest Academy - a school based on the teachings of radical "community organizer" Saul Alinsky.

"Thanks to everyone who helped us celebrate the 2011 Midwest Academy Awards! We were proud to present our 2011 Awards to: Rep. Barney Frank, Rep. Keith Ellison, Teresa Vilmain, Anna Lefer Kuhn and Lenore Palladino."[31]

Netroots Nation

At the 2011 Netroots Nation conference the LIUNA sponsored a Fight Back for Good Jobs rally featuring LIUNA President Terry O’Sullivan, Van Jones, Sen. Ben Cardin, Rep. Keith Ellison, Rep. Tim Walz, Minneapolis Mayor R. T. Rybak, St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman and other political, business and community leaders.[32]

CPC "Good jobs" tour

On June 27, 2011, Detroit was the second stop of the Congressional Progressive Caucus's "Good Jobs" tour. Reps. Hansen Clarke and John Conyers, D-Mich., joined with Keith Ellison, D-Minn., Marcy Kaptur, D-Ohio, and the Rev. Jesse Jackson listening to the "stories and thinking of the people".

In their brief remarks, the leaders issued a call to redirect money from wars, Wall Street and the rich to a rebuilding of America.

Jackson said war spending is "breaking our cities." He was seconded by Clarke who said the money we're spending in Afghanistan is ours, "it should come back to us."

Kaptor said we need to tax the financial giants asking, "Why can't we tax hedge funds like we do the corner bakery?"

Ellison emphasized that unity is required to win, saying being angry will not bring jobs but banding together, speaking together, and fighting together can. "We will use our strength in numbers to fight corporate greed," he said.

Conyers said we are "getting ready" to re-elect President Obama but we need the President to get behind job creating legislation like the Humphrey Hawkins jobs bill he has introduced.

"We are going to Washington to tell him we want him to lead in the fight for jobs. We will tell him we are ready to help," said Conyers.[33]

Occupy Minnesota, Sunday October 9th, 2011

Keith Ellison, and Antonia from La Asamblea de Derechos Civiles

Several members, including Lance Goldsberry of the local Twin Cities Democratic Socialists of America took part in the Occupy Minnesota (Wall Street) event, Sunday October 9th, 2011.

Congressman Keith Ellison (D) of Minnesota, and Antonia from La Asamblea de Derechos Civiles also attended the event.[34]

Restore the American Dream for the 99 Percent Act

Reps Grijalva and Ellison at the Capitol press conference

"Responding directly to national demand for a massive jobs program", members of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, December 13, 2011, introduced the Restore the American Dream for the 99 Percent Act into the House of Representatives.

The bill would create more than 4 million jobs and reduce the deficit by more than $2 trillion over the next 10 years, making it the biggest government effort thus far to marshal the resources needed to address the economic crisis.

While no one expects the bill to pass in the Republican-controlled House, it is viewed by many as outlining what really must be done if the economy is to be restarted in a way that benefits the overwhelming majority of the population.

Progressive Caucus Co-Chairmen Reps. Keith Ellison, D-Minn. and Raul Grijalva, D-Ariz., presented the legislation at a news conference in the Capitol.

The bill would create several "corps" that will offer government jobs to the unemployed doing essential work including repairing school buildings, maintaining public parks, building neighborhood energy efficiency and conservation projects, and providing health care and other public services in underserved areas. One of the corps would be specifically devoted to re-hiring teachers and first responders laid off by cash-strapped state and local governments .
There are provisions in the bill that require 75 percent of the goods and services purchased by the federal government to be made in America, provisions designed to help small businesses get federal contracts, and allocation of $50 billion alone for highway, public transportation and electrical grid improvement projects.
The bill provides for tariffs in cases where what the lawmakers called "currency manipulation by China" results in "artificially driving down the cost of Chinese imports."

One clause in the bill protects both the long-term unemployed and wounded veterans from hiring discrimination.
The bill includes provisions that would raise $800 billion through a surcharge on millionaires and billionaires, end tax subsidies for oil companies, and impose a tiny financial transactions tax on Wall Street.
There would be other budget savings through ending the war in Afghanistan and slashing $200 billion from the defense budget by eliminating unneeded weapons systems and cutting in half the military forces currently stationed in Europe.

The bill also strengthens health care reform by creating a public health insurance option that would be available through health care exchanges. That measure alone, the lawmakers say, would drive down spending federal health care spending by $90 billion.
The bill would allow Medicare to bargain with pharmaceutical companies to get bulk discounts, a move blocked by Republicans in the past. Supporters say it would help save more than $150 billion.

To save Social Security benefits and trust fund, the legislation would raise the cap on earnings taxed by Social Security above its current $106,800.

"The Republicans want the people to think about how bad things are and to focus their anger on the president," said Grijalva "They don't want people to count the things the Republicans voted down that would have helped this country."

"This bill," said Ellison, "shows we can put people to work today by building for tomorrow."[35]

HR 365

HR 365 was introduced by Michigan Democratic Rep. Hansen Clarke, in 2011, in a YouTube video posted on the representative's page, he said "We need to cut, cap, and forgive student loan debt," and that "That is the true debt that is burdening American families. We cut student loan debt we'll have a freer more prosperous country."

The bill has been sponsored by House Representatives Dennis Kucinich of Ohio, Keith Ellison of Minnesota John Conyers of Michigan, and Elijah Cummings of Maryland.[36]

Demos event

Demos.JPG
Demos3.JPG

On Thursday, May 31, 2012 Demos, The American Prospect, and "our supporters celebrated our work over the past year. We also honored three incredible leaders who have advanced our vision of shared economic prosperity, inclusive democracy, and effective government. Thanks to all for helping us be at our best in this critical moment".

2012 Transforming America Awardees, were Sheila Bair, Leo Gerard, Ai-jen Poo

Honorary chairs included Congressman Keith Ellison.[37]

Progressive Democrats of America

Keith Ellison, John Conyers, and DSA member, and PDA National Director Tim Carpenter

Keith Ellison has close ties to Progressive Democrats of America, joining the Advisory Board in 2013. He has appeared at several PDA events including Progressive Central conferences and Progressive Round Tables. [38]

PDA "hit its stride"

In 2012, PDA hit its stride electorally as well helping its National Board Members Congress members John Conyers (D-MI.), Donna Edwards (D-MD.), Keith Ellison (D-MN.), Raul Grijalva (D-AZ.), James McGovern (D-MA.) and Barbara Lee (D-CA.) sweep to victory. [39]

Progressive Democrats of America 2012 endorsement

Capturepdawedsite.JPG

In 2012, Keith Ellison (MN), was one of 14 leftist Congressional and Senate candidates endorsed by Progressive Democrats of America, an organization dominated by members or affiliates of Democratic Socialists of America and the Institute for Policy Studies.

The Peoples' Inauguration

Progressive Central: The Peoples' Inauguration was held Saturday, January 19, 2013, at the UDC David A. Clarke School of Law 5th Floor Moot Court Room, 4340 Connecticut Avenue NW, Washington, DC.

The event was sponsored by Progressive Democrats of America, The Nation, National Nurses United, Democrats.com and Busboys and Poets. The event was advertised and promoted by the Institute for Policy Studies.

Keith Ellison addressed the lunchtime session by video.[40]

In the 113th Congress , some PDA-backed Democrats planned to introduce pieces of legislation that enjoy widespread support among the American left—but will, in all likelihood, be met with stiff opposition. Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.) said he would introduce a full employment act. Conyers will also again introduce a version of the so-called “Medicare-for-all” bill, which would create a single-payer universal healthcare system. Rep. Jim McGovern (D-Mass.) said he would introduce a constitutional amendment to affirm that corporations are not people, in addition to supporting a bill that would strengthen the Voting Rights Act. McGovern, like other PDA allies in Congress, also said that defense cuts would be a priority, telling the audience to rousing applause, “If I had my way, I would shut down every U.S. military base in the Middle East right now.” Moreover, Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.) will introduce a bill, backed prominently by the National Nurses United union, to implement a tax on all financial transactions, the so-called Robin Hood tax.[41]

Prosperity Not Austerity reception

April 17, 2013 Progressive Democrats of America hosted a Prosperity Not Austerity reception at Busboys and Poets, in Washington DC, featuring PDA National Board member Rep. John Conyers, Rep. Keith Ellison, Rep. Mark Takano, PDA National Board member Michael Lighty from National Nurses United and Rev. Lennox Yearwood.[42]

Progressive Round Table

On April 18, 2013, Progressive Democrats of America held a Progressive Round Table in D.C. with staffers Joseph Wender from Rep Ed Markey's office, Jenny Perrino from Rep. John Conyers' office, and Jamie Long from Rep. Keith Ellison's office who reported on key legislation and joined us discussing austerity pressure, budget priorities and more.

We also welcomed Ethan Rosenkranz from the Project on Defense Alternatives, Stephen Miles from Win Without War, Miriam Pemberton from the Institute for Policy Studies, Joan Stallard from CODEPINK, and Michael Lighty as well as several NNU nurses who were holding their lobby day on the Hill. [43]

Anti-Fracking legislation endorser

On March 14, 2013, Rep. Jared Polis (D-CO) and Rep. Matt Cartwright (D-PA) have introduced the Bringing Reductions to Energy’s Airborne Toxic Health Effect (BREATHE) Act, and the Focused Reduction of Effluence and Stormwater runoff through Hydraulic Environmental Regulation (FRESHER) Act, in order to ensure that the hydraulic fracking industry follows the same rules that other industries do in preserving our natural resources. This legislation is focused on ensuring the safety and the health of the communities where the hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, process is already taking place.

The BREATHE Act would ensure that we close the oil and gas industry’s loophole to the Clean Air Act’s aggregation provision, in addition to adding hydrogen sulfide—a chemical associated with nausea, vomiting, headaches, and irritation of the eyes, nose, and throat—to the Clean Air Act’s federal list of hazardous air pollutants.

The BREATHE Act has the following original co-sponsors including: Reps. Rush Holt, Jr., Raul Grijalva, John Sarbanes, James Moran, Michael Quigley, Earl Blumenauer, Gerald Connolly, Zoe Lofgren, Michael Honda, Paul Tonko, Barbara Lee, David Price, Carolyn Maloney, Michael Capuano, Mark Pocan, Jim McDermott, Eleanor Holmes Norton, Alcee Hastings, Keith Ellison, Niki Tsongas, William Keating, Adam Smith, Jim Langevin, Chellie Pingree, Judy Chu, Louise Slaughter, Jerrold Nadler, Grace Meng, Jan Schakowsky, Nita Lowey, Jared Huffman, Gary Peters and Alan Lowenthal.

The following organizations have endorsed this legislation and are actively working to garner support within Congress and throughout the country: Physicians for Social Responsibility, Natural Resources Defense Council, Earthjustice, Alliance of Nurses for Healthy Environments, Sierra Club, Earthworks, Breast Cancer Action, Clean Water Action, Environment America, Greenpeace, Nature Abounds, Oil Change International, Citizens for a Healthy Community, Citizens for Huerfano County, Clean Water Action Colorado, Erie Rising, Grassroots Energy Activist Network, Holy Terror Farm, San Luis Valley Ecosystem Council, SOS Foundation, Western Colorado Congress of Mesa County, Western Slope Conservation Center and Wilderness Workshop.[44]

Citizen Action honor

Ellison.JPG

Friday, Sept. 20, 2013, Citizen Action Illinois held its Annual Dinner, honoring U.S. Congressman Keith Ellison of Minnesota's 5th District, Co-Chair of the Progressive Caucus of the United States Congress.[45]

Economic Policy Institute

In 2013 Keith Ellison was listed a a member of the Board of Directors of the Economic Policy Institute.[46]

Immigration rally arrest

More than 20,000 people - including thousands of unionists -- who marched down the Washington, D.C., Mall on Oct. 8, 2013, to demand the U.S. House immediately pass comprehensive immigration reform. And 200, including 90 union leaders and union members and eight members of the House of Representatives were arrested when, in an act of civil disobedience, they blocked a street in front of the Capitol.

Arrestees included Lisa Bergmann, SEIU 1199 member Delphine Clyburn and activist Joelle Fishman, both also from Connecticut, Communications Workers Secretary-Treasurer Annie Hall and Political Director Yvette Herrera, The Newspaper Guild's president, Bernie Lunzer, and Paul Booth, the top assistant to AFSCME's president. Among the nation's top labor leaders also taken into custody were AFL-CIO Executive Vice President Tefere Gebre, AFT President Randi Weingarten, Unite Here President D. Taylor and Maria Elena Durazo, executive secretary treasurer of the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor.

Among the lawmakers arrested were Reps. Luis Gutierrez (D-Ill.), John Lewis (D-Ga.), Keith Ellison (D-Minn.), Raul Grijalva (D-Ariz.), Joseph Crowley (D - N.Y.), Al Green (D-Texas), Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.) and Charlie Rangel (D-N.Y.).

Unions, led by contingents from the Service Employees and their Local 32BJ, the Laborers and Unite Here, contributed a large share of the demonstrators. Other unions represented included AFSCME, the Communications Workers/TNG, Labor Council for Latin American Advancement, AFT and the United Farm Workers. [47]

Voting rights for all

In May 2013, Mark Pocan and Keith Ellison unveiled a proposal to explicitly guarantee the right to vote in the Constitution.

“The right to vote is too important to be left unprotected,” explained Pocan, who announced the initiative at the state capitol in Madison, Wisconsin, where the Republican state assembly speaker recently announced plans to enact restrictive “voter ID” legislation before the 2014 election. “At a time when there are far too many efforts to disenfranchise Americans, a voting rights amendment would positively affirm our founding principle that our country is at its strongest when everyone participates. As the world’s leading democracy, we must demand of ourselves what we demand of others—a guaranteed right to vote for all.”

Without that clear guarantee, argues Ellison, politicians continue to propose and enact legislation that impedes voting rights. Noting recent wrangling over voter identification laws, burdensome registration requirements and reduced early voting opportunities in various states, as well as a challenge to the Voting Rights Act that is now under consideration by the US Supreme Court, the Minnesota Democrat, who co-chairs the Congressional Progressive Caucus, says, “Even though the right to vote is the most-mentioned right in the Constitution, legislatures across the country have been trying to deny that right to millions of Americans, including in my home state of Minnesota. It’s time we made it clear once and for all: every citizen in the United States has a fundamental right to vote.”[48]

Lifting travel ban on Cuba

A May 03, 2013 Press release from the radical controlled and Institute for Policy Studies affiliated Latin America Working Group's Cuba Team stated:

Due to your action/emails/phone calls we have 59 signatures from House representatives urging President Obama to support travel to Cuba by granting general licenses for ALL current categories of travel.
By eliminating the laborious license application process, especially for people-to-people groups, that is managed by the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), the majority of the bureaucratic red tape that holds up licensable travel to Cuba would disappear and actually facilitate what the President wanted to see in 2011, liberalized travel regulations.

Signatories included Rep. Ellison .[49]

Staff

The following have worked as staff members for Keith Ellison:[50]


External links

References

  1. Official Congressional bio, accessed August 16. 2011
  2. Official Congressional bio, accessed August 16. 2011
  3. [http://actmidwestnews.blogspot.co.nz/2012/01/keith-ellison-democrat-nation-of-islam.html, Keith Ellison: Democrat, Nation of Islam follower, Media asks no questions, as usual. With politicians like this, who needs enemies? by Scott Johnson, posted on Aug 28, 2011, Activist Midwest newsletter]
  4. [http://actmidwestnews.blogspot.co.nz/2012/01/keith-ellison-democrat-nation-of-islam.html, Keith Ellison: Democrat, Nation of Islam follower, Media asks no questions, as usual. With politicians like this, who needs enemies? by Scott Johnson, posted on Aug 28, 2011, Activist Midwest newsletter]
  5. Kwame Ture (Stokely Carmichael) Zionism Debate/Lecture, Published on Nov 17, 2012
  6. [http://actmidwestnews.blogspot.co.nz/2012/01/keith-ellison-democrat-nation-of-islam.html, Keith Ellison: Democrat, Nation of Islam follower, Media asks no questions, as usual. With politicians like this, who needs enemies? by Scott Johnson, posted on Aug 28, 2011, Activist Midwest newsletter]
  7. The Weekly Standard, Louis Farrakhan's First Congressman, Oct 9, 2006, Vol. 12, No. 04 • By SCOTT W. JOHNSON
  8. [http://actmidwestnews.blogspot.co.nz/2012/01/keith-ellison-democrat-nation-of-islam.html, Keith Ellison: Democrat, Nation of Islam follower, Media asks no questions, as usual. With politicians like this, who needs enemies? by Scott Johnson, posted on Aug 28, 2011, Activist Midwest newsletter]
  9. CAIR California, SF Valley Community Event a Success, Rep. Keith Ellison gave a Keynote Address on "Defending our Democracy" Jun 02, 2011
  10. CAIR Minnesota website, Sold-Out CAIR-MN Annual Banquet a Success Tuesday, 16 April 2013
  11. J Street 2008 Annual Report
  12. Official Congressional bio, accessed August 16. 2011
  13. http://www.pww.org/article/articleview/9643/
  14. Our Future website: Take Back America 2003 Speakers (accessed on June 17, 2010)
  15. Confabb website: America's Future Now 2009 Speakers (accessed on July 13, 2010)
  16. Our Future website: Take Back the American Dream 2011 Speakers (accessed on Sept. 22, 2011)
  17. Green Jobs Conference website: 2009 Speakers (accessed on Jan. 28, 2011)
  18. Green Jobs Conference website: 2010 Speakers (accessed on Jan. 28, 2011)
  19. Broadcast Urban: 37th International Convention - Town Hall Meeting" (accessed on Dec. 19, 2011)
  20. PW, Black trade unionists gear up for election, by: Tony Pecinovsky June 1 2008
  21. http://cpc.grijalva.house.gov/index.cfm?ContentID=166&ParentID=0&SectionID=4&SectionTree=4&lnk=b&ItemID=164
  22. Congressional Black Caucus: Members (accessed on Feb. 24, 2011)
  23. http://www.wellstone.org/about-us/board-directors
  24. http://www.wellstone.org/about-us/our-mission-goals
  25. 21st Century Democrats website, About us]
  26. 21st Century Democrats 2012 bio
  27. The Minnesota Independent: Ellison, McCollum and Oberstar urge Obama to lift Gaza blockade, Jan. 26, 2010 (accessed on March 14, 2011)
  28. The Uptake: Congressmen Ellison Meets FBI Raid Victims, Nov. 7, 2010 (accessed on Nov. 22, 2010)
  29. Report on Congressional Delegation From the Committee to Stop FBI Repression, U.S. Peace Council website, posted Nov. 20, 2010
  30. Naked Emporer News on Youtube: Progressive Vision of Borderless US: Rep Says 'God Willing...Border Will Become an Irrelevancy', June 2010 (accessed on Jan. 6, 2010)
  31. Midwest Academy website, Midwest Academy Awards 2012
  32. Talking Union, Lots More Union Events at Netroots Nation, Posted on June 13, 2011 by dsalaborblogmoderator
  33. PW "Good Jobs" tour: Detroiters say we need jobs, not spending on war John Rummel June 28 2011
  34. Cities DSA at the Occupy Minnesota (Wall Street) Event, Sunday October 9th, 2011, Twin Cities DSA blog, accessed Novembr 2, 2011
  35. PW, Congressional Progressive Caucus introduces biggest jobs bill yet, by: John Wojcik, December 13 2011
  36. PW, Forgive student loans and save the economy, by: Jordan Farrar September 27 2011
  37. 2012 Transforming America, Honorary Chairs
  38. 2013 Advisory Board Members
  39. blog for Arizona. PDA sponsors 'People's Inauguration' in DC on Jan 19: Watch live streaming
  40. PDA website, accessed Jan 15, 2013
  41. ITT, January 22, 2013, Progressive Democrats: Inside and Outside, BY Cole Stangler
  42. Help PDA Continue Our Momentum!
  43. Help PDA Continue Our Momentum!
  44. Polis website. Polis, Cartwright Introduce Legislation to Hold Fracking Industry Accountable,
  45. [ http://www.citizenaction-il.org/node/406, CAI website, Annual Dinner Honoring Congressman Keith Ellison - Purchase Tickets Now! Date: 07/02/2013]
  46. Economic Policy Institute, Board of Directors
  47. [PW,More than 200 arrested at immigration rights rally in D.C. by: Mark Gruenberg October 9 2013 http://peoplesworld.org/more-than-200-arrested-at-immigration-rights-rally-in-d-c/ ]
  48. The Nation, Congressmen Seek Constitutional Guarantee of the Right to Vote John Nichols on May 13, 2013
  49. Update on Cuba Travel: We Gathered 59 Signatures, The LAWG Cuba Team: Mavis, Emily and Karina on May 03, 2013
  50. Legistorm: Keith Ellison (accessed on Aug. 24, 2010)