July 17th, 2012
07:03 PM ET

Tonight on AC360: Rep. Keith Ellison 'it’s like a bizarre game of six degrees of separation'

Democratic Congressman Keith Ellison talks to Anderson tonight about the letters Rep. Michele Bachmann and four of her Republican colleagues sent to five government agencies calling for an investigation into potential “deep penetration” of Muslim extremist infiltration into the highest levels of the U.S. government.

The letters cite the work of a group called 'The Center for Security Policy' whose website is called MuslimbrotherhoodinAmerica.com.

The head of the group is Frank Gaffney, who has been a guest on our program in the past. Gaffney says that 'the Muslim Brotherhood is infiltrating every aspect of American life in order to impose Sharia law.'

His critics call him a conspiracy theorist, and The Southern Poverty Law Center calls Gaffney, quote, "the anti-Muslim movement's most paranoid propagandist." Michele Bachmann's fellow representative from Minnesota, Congressman Keith Ellison, tells Anderson that “the Southern Poverty Law Center investigates hate groups like the Neo-Nazis and the KKK, he is on the moral plane of groups like that, and I don't know why anybody who is in the U.S. Congress would want to associate themselves with Mr. Gaffney.”

Rep. Ellison, a Muslim, has sent a letter to Bachmann and her colleagues, in which he wrote 'I request that you provide my office a full accounting of the sources you used to make the serious allegations against the individuals and organizations in your letters'. He continued to say 'Mr. Gaffney's views have been widely discredited, including by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and conservative organizations … After the ACU board conducted a full investigation of Mr. Gaffney's accusations against Grover Norquist and Suhail Khan, the board found Mr. Gaffney's accusations 'reprehensible,' 'baseless' and 'false and unfounded.' The ACU even barred Mr. Gaffney's participation from CPAC in 2011.'

Bachmann's reply to Ellison, defended the letters and repeated her view that a 'multidepartment investigation into potential Muslim Brotherhood infiltration into the U.S. government is not only necessary but, quote, beyond timely.'

AC360 invited Rep. Bachmann and the other four members of Congress who signed the letters to come on the program last night and tonight. They all either declined or did not respond to our request. Our invitation stands.

Watch this preview and tune in for the full conversation at 8 and 10 p.m. ET.

soundoff (7 Responses)
  1. Kim

    I wish we could hold people accountable for their false claims. I don't like how people try to benefit from fear or at the detriment of others.

    July 17, 2012 at 10:22 pm |
  2. Becki Weaver

    AT THE CLOSE OF THE CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, a woman asked Benjamin Franklin what type of government the Constitution was bringing into existence. Franklin replied, “A republic, if you can keep it.”

    July 17, 2012 at 10:21 pm |
  3. Angela McCullagha

    The hole thing about the Republicans attacking The President of the USA is horrible! If they would read some of Abraham Lincoln's quotes maybee they would have some more respect for their leader!
    People who are inventors in America need to think about US patients for saving them from some one else taking their idea and setting up shop next door! So I guess to government does have something to do with their wealth! No one is better than any one else, no matter of how much you have or don't!

    July 17, 2012 at 8:51 pm |
  4. gwen vincent

    you may not get this until later, because I live in the part of the country that takes pride in snake-handling religion-I'll refrain comment, we are all allowed to worship as we please: which leads me into my first comment, somebody please put a muzzle on Bachman, I'm ashamed to admit that she's a woman, and I am very proud to be a woman and all that we have overcome and changed. My second comment, I worked in the public for almost 30 years, I like to think that I have a pretty good handle on what the average public thinks, it is my opinion that anyone should be able to understand what Pres. Obama meant in his speech about government and business, it takes a republican to get things mixed up and pulled way out of context. I know, I live in a primarily Republican state, I'm working on them: and, as far as Assad, where I'm from, when a dog goes mad, you put him down. Pres. Obama needs to send his super-team of seals in there and just put the poor miserable fool down. I promise, I won't tell a soul! Who does he think he's going to rule over when he gets done?

    July 17, 2012 at 8:46 pm |
  5. Graham Tomkins

    Mr Cooper:-
    You were there and said nothing. Erik Erickson said that Romney was referred to by a Democrat [sorry, I don't recall who he attributed it to] as a FELON and a LIAR. I understand that English is a foreign lanuguage but if I'm not mistaken it was stated that Romney was either a FelonOR a Liar based on the forms he signed, but, since one form contradicted the other he was EITHER, OR, not AND.
    Are you impartial or are you just trying to CREATE news???

    July 17, 2012 at 8:36 pm |
    • J.V.Hodgson

      The comment was made by a Mrs Cutter the english nuance you point out was correct but the bigger nuance was the "IF" A then B and QED if B then C she said that depending on the actual circumstances he was potentially guilty of a crime or was Bains leader still as per documents filed with the SEC, otherwise he lied. ooops forgit he retrocatively retired... thats physically an legally impossible.

      July 19, 2012 at 4:31 am |
  6. Travis

    We need some Muslims to offset all these Zionists. Balance is needed.

    July 17, 2012 at 8:27 pm |