Sunday, Southwest Minneapolis' Rep. Keith Ellison told a national talk show that a controversial conservative pastor and supporter of Texas governor and presidential candidate Rick Perry "needs to read the constitution."
Appearing on "UP with Chris Hayes," he said, host Chris Hayes asked Ellison about the controversy about Mitt Romney's religion; he is a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Specifically, Hayes showed a clip of Rev. Robert Jeffress saying Romney belongs to "a cult."
Hayes asked Ellison, as a "non-Christian":
What is your opinion when you hear someone laying out so explicitly essentially a religious test for public office?
Well, what I think is that the Constitution says that Congress shall make no law establishing religion or abridging the free exercise thereof. Later on in the Constitution it makes a specific reference to what you said: No religious test for holding public office. So this seems to me an individual who needs to read the Constitution over again and try to appreciate what that means.
Hayes said Jeffress later said the Constitution does not allow for a religious test for public office, but people still can decide for our against candidates based on their religions.
Ellison said Jeffress is appealing to people's prejudice.
Later in the show, Ellison argued that government regulations do not kill jobs.
When we talked about increasing fuel efficiency standards, the industry responded, and they need engineers and designers and manufacturers, and they need actually more people to help respond to the new requirement.
I believe if the government says, look, we have got to reduce our carbon footprint, you will kick into gear a whole number of people that know how to do that or have ideas about that, and that will be a job engine. I understand what you mean, because if anything adds a cost to a business, you could assume that that will diminish that business's ability to hire. But I don't think that's actually right. I think what businesses want is customers and what—if they are selling product, if they have a product to sell they will do well even if they have some new regulations to meet.