After coasting to victory in the Democratic primary for Minnesota’s attorney general race on Tuesday evening, Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN) directly referred to a recent abuse allegation and once again denied that it ever occurred.
In his victory speech, according to reported remarks, Ellison said, “We had a very unexpected event at the end of this campaign that happened. I want to assure you that it is not true. We are going to keep on fighting all the way through. We are going to be respectful to all, and we are going to stand like steeples, and insist upon the truth.”
That allegation was made by Karen Monahan, the congressman’s ex-girlfriend. This past weekend, her son shared a Facebook post—allegedly without his mother’s knowledge—claiming he discovered a video on his mother’s computer allegedly showing a physical altercation in which Ellison pulled her off of a bed and yelled obscenities at her.
Ellison firmly denied the claims, saying in an initial statement, “I still care deeply for her well-being. This video does not exist because I never behaved in this way, and any characterization otherwise is false.”
Monahan does not want to release the video and told MPR News that the expectation that she would do so is frustrating.
“It sets the expectation for survivors of all kinds of forms of abuse, whether it be abuse toward women, abuse from police officers, abuse from other people in power, to have to be the ones, like I’m doing right now, to show and prove their stories,” she reportedly said. “It’s feeding into that.”
Most Democrats and affiliated organizations have not called for Ellison’s resignation or suggested he should drop out of the race. But the Democratic National Committee, where Ellison is still vice chairman, said yesterday in a statement that they are reviewing the claims, and that “All allegations of domestic abuse are disturbing and should be taken seriously.”
The DNC did not respond to a request for further comment from The Daily Beast on Wednesday.
Ellison also allegedly told reporters on Tuesday that they could anticipate more from him on the matter in the near future.
“We’re going to talk about all of this stuff in the days to come,” he said, according to The Washington Post. “I want to honor you guys and let you know; we’re not trying to avoid the topic. We will handle it head on. They are not true, but we will handle them in the days to come.”
His campaign did not immediately respond to a request for additional comment.
Ellison had served in Minnesota’s 5th congressional district for 12 years, where he established himself as one of the most vocal progressives in the House of Representatives. A vocal supporter of Sen. Bernie Sanders’ (I-VT) presidential campaign, Ellison decided to run for chair of the DNC but was defeated by Tom Perez, who made him deputy chair.