Ellison Aims to Reveal NFIB Donors, Members
The Fifth District congressman also received criticism from Republican challenger Chris Fields over his fundraising.
Congressman Keith Ellison is calling for a list of members and donors behind the National Federation of Independent Business, an organization currently challenging the federal Affordable Care Act.
According to a recent article in the Star Tribune, the paper reports Ellison's proposed disclosure is not likely to happen.
The NFIB has not directly responded to Ellison's request for information.
A spokeswoman for the NFIB said the organization has no plans to disclose its donor or member lists, adding that the allegations contained in Ellison's letter are without merit.
Ellison and Congressional Progressive Caucus co-chair Raul Grijalva sent a letter to the National Federation of Independent Business' president, calling on the organization to reveal the aforementioned information. The NFIB and other organizations have filed suit against President Obama's health care reform law, claiming Congress exceeded its authority by requiring citizens to buy health insurance by 2014.
Ellison told the Star Tribune the list needs to be disclosed:
The Affordable Care Act or 'Obamacare,' is a major accomplishment that is already benefitting millions of Americans. The fact that NFIB has asked the highest court in the land to review the law -- and possibly overturn it -- means relevant information about participants ... should be disclosed. We believe Americans should know who is funding a lawsuit that could take away their access to health care.
Fields Slams Ellison on Campaign Finance
In the latest entry on his Patch blog, Republican challenger Chris Fields dug into Ellison's fundraising stats, with some interesting results. Fields claims Ellison’s campaign currently has a 20:1 fundraising advantage over his own, estimating his DFL opponent will outspend him by more than 1,000% by the time the election is over.
If Keith Ellison really wanted to get the money out of politics, he could lead by example and pledge not to raise one more dollar for this campaign- he clearly already has plenty. He could take me up on my offer to hold a debate in every city in the Fifth District, and we could make this a campaign that is focused on the issues people care about most.
Fields' blog post has generated a lot of discussion, with commenters debating whether or not Ellison has been an effective representative of the Fifth Congressional District as well as delving into several other aspects of the race between Fields and Ellison.
Ellison Addresses Super PAC Spending
During an appearance on MSNBC's "Jansing & Co.," Ellison weighed in on the current amount of funding being provided to candidates by Super PACs. Ellison said he would like to see "ideas prevail, not money."
We're going to be debating a lot of things coming up. In a few days, debating whether student loan rates are going to double. we're going to be debating social security, medicare, medicaid, war, peace, all these things. Let us debate taxes and what the proper distribution should be. Let's not have undisclosed money dump into the airwaves and really confuse and confound people, and not let people make rational decisions based on good information. So we're trying to get the debate on ideas, not just on the power of money, just pouncing on everybody.