Once a clear frontrunner, a recent accusation of domestic abuse has threatened to knock congressman Keith Ellison's bid to become attorney general of Minnesota off track. The Deputy Chair of the Democratic National Committee, who has been accused of verbally and physically assaulting his ex-girlfriend, Karen Monahan, faces a Democratic primary Tuesday. But over his 20-year career in public service, he has been no stranger to weathering controversy.
Nation of Islam
In the 1990s Ellison was a member of the Nation of Islam, an anti-Semitic, anti-LGBTQ and racist group. Ellison penned a number of opinion pieces defending Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan and marched with him. In 2006, during his run for Congress, Ellison tried to claim that he was never involved with the group, but later amended his statements and denounced the group. "I wrongly dismissed concerns that they [Farrakhan's remarks] were anti-Semitic. They were and are anti-Semitic and I should have come to that conclusion earlier than I did," he wrote in a letter. "But at no time did I ever share their hateful views or repeat or approve of their hateful statements directed at Jews, gays or any other group."