Rep. Keith Ellison, deputy chair of the Democratic National Committee (AP/Lauren Victoria Burke) (AP/Lauren Victoria Burke)
Keith Ellison

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DNC Deputy Chair Keith Ellison has been hiding his most recent ties with the anti-Semitic Rev. Louis Farrakhan. We must demand the DNC take action. 

Congressman Keith Ellison (D-Minn.), deputy chair of the Democratic National Committee, has come under fire over previously undisclosed contacts with Reverend Louis Farrakhan, head of the anti-Semitic Nation of Islam movement.

Jewish leaders in the US have urged Ellison to step down from his position.

When Ellison first ran for Congress in 2006, he insisted that he had severed all ties with Farrakhan’s Nation of Islam, to which he belonged in the 1990s. Similarly, when Ellison ran for the chairmanship of the Democratic Party in 2016, he reiterated that he had long ago distanced himself from Farrakhan.

However, a series of recent reports in The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) and The Daily Caller revealed that Ellison has participated in at least three meetings with Farrakhan since entering Congress.

The WSJ reported earlier this month that Ellison and Farrakhan participated in a private dinner meeting in September 2013 with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and several dozen prominent American Muslims.

The Daily Caller reported that Ellison has taken part in at least two other meetings with Farrakhan since becoming a member of Congress, one of which took place in Farrakhan’s hotel room.

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Ron Halber, executive director of the Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Washington, said that Ellison “demonstrated exceedingly poor judgment by participating in a meeting with one of America’s most notorious anti-Semites and the leader of a regime that has called for Israel’s annihilation,” and therefore “should resign as deputy chairman of the Democratic Party.”

Ellison’s ouster is also being urged by the National Council of Young Israel (NCYI), whose membership includes more than 100 Orthodox synagogues, and the Coalition for Jewish Values (CJV), which represents several hundred Orthodox rabbis.

Anti-Defamation League (ADL) CEO Jonathan Greenblatt tweeted that Ellison’s participation in the Rouhani meeting along with Farrakhan was “extremely disturbing” and that “the presence of Louis Farrakhan should have been a red flag” for Ellison.

David Bernstein, president of the Jewish Council for Public Affairs, wrote on Twitter that Ellison’s actions were “very disturbing…Dining with hatemongers is not OK.” 

Farrakhan’s sermons are fraught with anti-Semitism.

At a meeting of the Nation of Islam at Madison Square Garden in 1985, Farrakhan said of the Jews: “And don’t you forget, when it’s God who puts you in the ovens,  its forever!”

In March 2015, Farrakhan accused Jews of involvement in the September 11 terror attacks.

In a 1984 address, he said that the “nation called Israel never has had any peace in 40 years and she will never have any peace because there can be no peace structured on injustice, thievery, lying and deceit and using the name of God to shield your dirty religion under His holy and righteous name.”

We must not remain silent in the face of such ties between a senior Democratic leader and a disreputable Jew hater. Tell the Democratic National Committee that they must take action on the issue.

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