Minnesota Rep. Keith Ellison (D), who is running to be Minnesota’s next attorney general, was grilled during a debate Friday over multiple domestic abuse allegations against him.
Ellison, who also serves as the deputy chairman of the Democratic National Committee, denied the allegations and claimed he wasn’t sure whether other accusers would “cook up” additional allegations.
During the debate, which appeared on Twin Cities PBS “Almanac” program, Ellison was asked about the allegations after a moderator noted that 40 percent of Minnesota voters say they will factor into their votes in November.
“Lets talk about Amy Alexander. That was a case in 2005 when she was harassing me and my staff. I got an order for protection to have her not do that anymore. The judge awarded that in 2006 when I was running for Congress,” Ellison said, adding the judge ordered Alexander to not contact him again.
“So this is not multiple cases,” Ellison added.
Speaking of Monahan’s allegations, Ellison said: “They’re not true. I have said that they’re not true.”
Ellison went on to downplay the seriousness of the allegations by claiming an “independent investigation” remains ongoing. Ellison’s Republican opponent, Doug Wardlow, challenged the assertion that the investigation, which is led by the DNC, is independent.
“It’s not an independent investigation! It’s independent by your friends and fellow party members. That’s not an independent investigation,” Wardlow said.
Later a moderator asked Ellison if he is certain that no additional accusers will come forward.
“Look, in this political environment, I don’t know what somebody might cook up. But I could tell you that there is absolutely nobody that I am aware of who has any sort of — who is threatening or suggesting or who has ever made a prior accusation about me,” Ellison replied.
Wardlow shot back that “two credible, strong allegations of domestic abuse is enough.”
“There’s documentary evidence. We have a medical record where Ms. Monahan reported to her doctor the abuse that was going on,” he said.
What does Monahan allege?
Monahan alleges that Ellison once dragged her off a bed by her feet while verbally berating her. She has also said Ellison sent her threatening text messages.
This week, Monahan released a note that shows she discussed the abuse with a physician nearly a year before her allegations went public.
“She states that she was in a very stressful environment for years, emotional and physical abuse by a partner with whom she is now separated,” the note says. “She identifies the individual she was involved with as Congressman Ellison, and she is worried about retribution if she identifies him publicly.”