Keith Ellison presents Elmo doll to Congress

Categories: Politics

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Keith Ellison: Sesame Street enthusiast.
As if just to further speculation that Washington has lost its mind, Minnesota Congressman Keith Ellison brought an Elmo doll onto the House floor today.

The point, according to a statement from Ellison, was to hammer home the argument that the United States government needs to unfreeze Palestinian aid, which goes toward funding things like Shara'a Simsim, the Palestinian version of Sesame Street.

Last October, Congress suspended nearly $200 million in funds to the U.S. Agency for International Development. Aside from Shara'a Simsim, which is on hold for now, the money also funded things like hospitals and education.

"We all know who Elmo is," Ellison announced. "This guy taught us our 123s...But he also taught us tolerance and understanding."

The alternative to Elmo, says Ellison, is a character named Farfour, who -- in contrast to counting, tolerance, and understanding -- specializes in promoting "violence and anti-Semitism."

Here's the full transcript from Ellison's speech:

Mr. Speaker, I brought a friend to the floor today to make a point. We all know who Elmo is. This guy taught us our 123's...But he also taught us tolerance and understanding.

For the past several years...he's been doing the same for children in the Palestinian Territories. Because of Sesame Street in Palestine, Palestinian kids grow up with the same positive role models that we did.

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Keith Ellison uses Elmo doll to prove his point.
But recently...Sesame Street hasn't been on the air.

Now, Palestinian kids are left watching Farfour - this mouse - who is the main character on a Hamas TV show for children. Instead of tolerance and understanding, Farfour promotes violence and anti-Semitism.

This Congress approved funding for Sesame Street in Palestine last year. But one member is holding up the money. That means no Elmo...Only Farfour teaching extremism.

I'm not the only one who wants Congress to release the funding. The Israeli government also wants us to release it.

Congress should release the money it already approved for Sesame Street...and all programs that support positive development in Palestine.


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20 comments
Laya
Laya

I´m disappointed to see that mr. Elisson brought the 10-year old "Tickle Me Elmo" doll to Congress. He could at least have purchased the new one ;) http://www.elmodoll.org/  

Chris Fields
Chris Fields

The people of the 5th Congressional District deserve a Congressman who can present an issue in a more statesman like manner.  These parlor tricks aren't impressive and do nothing to further any cause. 

In the 5th CD we have an economy that is breaking the backs of people who are working and stripping away the dignity of those who want to work.  If I am elected as the Congressman for the 5th Congressional District I will make sure that my focus is on the people of our district and not on using sophomoric parlor tricks to gain attention.  Find out more on my website and Facebook.

Kirk the Conservative Jerk
Kirk the Conservative Jerk

Right Keith, because we (the U.S.A.) have sooooo much money to give.Hell ,the federal government borrows 41 cents out of every dollar we spend (this includes aid).And 47% of American citizens pay NO federal taxes after write offs.So WTF, lets borrow some more from China!When we cant service the debt we can just give them California for payment. better yet, how about one of them usless territories we own like Guam.I hope all you college kid go out and get great jobs with huge salaries after graduation, because the Fed will need to shake you down for as mush money as the Fed can get just to cover the interest payments on the federal government's debt.  Sorry kids, your future look grim.

I say we cut all aid and military support to foreign governments, because we simply cant afford it anymore.  I wonder if Keith has outside influence twisting his arm.I wonder if Nancy Pelosi accused him of "using props."

Bob Alberti
Bob Alberti

I don't get what's so "lost its mind" about this story?  I think the better story is that you have a (or "the") Muslim Congressperson agreeing with the Israeli government about an issue of Palestinian public TV funding.  Maybe if you spent less time seeking snark and more being analytical this could have been an interesting and inspiring story.

Michelle Bachmann
Michelle Bachmann

You actually are running against Keith?   He's going to embarrass you because I can tell you are an idiot.   Way to lay out your case against Palestine and only find agreement from the biggest bigot troll loser on City Pages.   It's amazing what absolute clowns Keith Ellison draws in his elections. 

The funniest part is how you slam Keith for being unstatesman like before throwing out your own insults.    I think you should figure out exactly what it means to be a statesmen but one of the general rules is you run strictly on the issues and not by throwing insults around.    I like how you post three idiotic statements on here and don't propose a single idea, all you do is insult Keith and talk in political generalisms.   I can tell from your statements you are nothing but a vapid talking head idiot.   I bet you talk a lot in a real loud voice but you never say a damm thing.   I bet Keith is going to beat you by 30 points because you are a loser.  

Kirk the Conservative Jerk
Kirk the Conservative Jerk

Welcome Chris, and Hoorah!

Please take that seat from Keith!  America has a serious spending problem that needs to be addressed and I'm sure you understand that.  Get out and hit the streets running.  Knock on as many doors as you can.  Attend as many public events as you can.  Let them see your face and hear your message.  This race is yours!Now if only you were in my district...

green23
green23

 Maybe you don't realize that Israel is (by far) the largest recipient of U.S. foreign aid. Second is Egypt (about half of Israel's amount), and *way back* in third is Colombia. The rest of the world has to divide up the remaining 3%.

We give over one million dollars to Israel EVERY DAY.

Is Israel an impoverished third-world nation? Nope.

Weird how Republicans can always seem to find billions to give away to Israel every year, while screaming that Obama doesn't support Israel enough.

It's weird how Kirk screams that we can't afford <$100k a year for Palestine, but we can afford more than a million a DAY for Israel.

Chris Fields
Chris Fields

He raises truckloads of cash for his own campaign, spends it how he pleases and now he wants to take our money and give it away.  It's not right, we deserve better.

TrollBait
TrollBait

"And 47% of American citizens pay NO federal taxes after write offs"

Ummmmmm yea.  I know it's bad to feed the trolls, but that number is lie that keeps on coming up.

Howard Glickman of the Tax Policy Center (which is where that number comes from in the first place) wrote in 2010:

"Let me explain—repeat actually—what this means: About half of taxpayers paid no federal income tax last year. It does not mean they paid no tax at all. Many shelled out Social Security and Medicare payroll taxes. In fact, only 14 percent of Americans didn’t pay either income or payroll taxes. Some paid property taxes and, it is fair to say, just about all of them paid sales taxes of one kind or another. So to say they pay no taxes is flat wrong.  However, this class warfare-like rhetoric plays to a perception that the income tax is a chump tax: Only hard-working folks like us pay it. The welfare queens don’t. The super-rich don’t. It is a powerful emotional argument. It is also flat wrong."

But I know: facts are all just a liberal conspiracy.

Read for yourself: http://taxvox.taxpolicycenter....

webcelt
webcelt

"I wonder if Keith has outside influence twisting his arm." Hmm. Never thought I see conservatives accuse Keith Ellison of being in the pocket of the Israel lobby.

Kirk the Conservative Jerk
Kirk the Conservative Jerk

What was that pollution you spread into the minds of anyone who would disagree with a black man?  Oh ya, racist.And since you disagree with Chris, Racist!!!!

Sucks to have such a moronic idea thrown back in your face doesn't it?See, I hate dead kids, and you hate black people.

Michelle Bachmann
Michelle Bachmann

If he was in your district he would lose in the primary to Michele Bachmann, badly.

Kirk the Conservative Jerk
Kirk the Conservative Jerk

Q. Who was the President that helped found the State of Israel?  A  Harry Truman (democrat)

Q. Which party does the U.S. Jewish Population continue to give their political contributions to.A. The Democrat Party receives 60%+ of all political contributions from the Jewish Community.

So when you say things like "Support for Israel is the cornerstone of Republican foreign policy;" well this just shows how strong liberal manipulation/brainwashing is.

Facts are facts!  There would be no State of Israel if there were no Democrats.Yes the Republicans talk about "supporting Israel," but Democrats have shown their support through action and thus get more of the support of the U.S. Jewish Community.

Kirk the Conservative Jerk
Kirk the Conservative Jerk

Tough night of drinking last night green23?Cut off ALL aid to ALL countries! Wasn't I clear the first time I said it?Or were you taking an opportunity to misrepresent me?Israel doesn't need our help, and they certainly don't need our money.And Obama promised an “ironclad” commitment to the state of Israel last night in his State of the Union.Screw that!No more aid for anyone, we simply cant afford it...

green23
green23

 Please name an Administration that has never taxed the citizens and never provided foreign aid. Because you make it sound like this is something Ellison invented.

Bachmann screams that Obama isn't giving away *enough* money to Israel. Hey that's tax dollars - you know, "taking away your money". A million a day given away to Israel isn't enough for Bachmann, but Ellison is the real bad guy, right?

green23
green23

 You just saw your hero, the Republican candidate Chris Fields, endorse aid to Israel.

The quote: "Aid given to Israel is part of a strategic national security plan that serves our best interest."

I'll bet that makes you real mad. He isn't buying into your "no foreign aid, EVER" line, is he? He must have completely ignored your rant about borrowing money from China.

green23
green23

 Support for Israel is the cornerstone of Republican foreign policy. Both Parties support foreign aid for Israel. You make it out to be a strictly Democratic position. For a guy who lives to play the "both sides do it" card, you really missed an opportunity there.

You also scream about the paltry sum Ellison is discussing, but ignore the elephant in the room. Maybe you should be screeching at your Republican masters over the billions we give to the oil companies every year, because they have stopped Obama from cutting off those subsidies.

Foreign aid has its place, but giving money to developed countries that don't need it is wasteful and stupid. Supporting educational programs in a desperately poor country like Palestine is far wiser than giving away a million a day to a relatively wealthy nation like Israel to spend on weapons systems.

Foreign aid is less than 1% of the federal budget, btw.

Michelle Bachmann
Michelle Bachmann

When you say stupid things like that its easy to remember you are a stupid loser janitor.  America is the most powerful richest country in the world.   We give aid to other countries because it is our duty as the richest most powerful country to take the lead on helping places in need.   Giving aid to places that need spreads good will towards America throughout the world and saves us money in the long term.   How much do you think it will cost America when Al Queda gets a hold of a nuclear device from Pakistan because we stopped giving aid to the part of the government that is at least somewhat loyal to America?  How many billions does Exxon lose when their pipelines in Africa are destroyed by rebels because we stopped giving aid to the military that holds the rebels in check?   You aren't smart enough to understand international politics kirk.    We have to give the most in aid because we have the most to lose if things go bad.  I know its fun thinking like a stupid child like you do but its annoying to those of us that have been to college and read books. 

Michelle Bachmann
Michelle Bachmann

Chris Fields you are so stupid only kirk will agree with you.   So its extortion then?   Let's look at other examples of extortion under your logic you stupid bastard.

Child: Mommy give me attention or I will go and get attention from some other adult one perhaps who doesn't have my best interests in mind.Mother of child:  That's extortion you little bastard.  

Chris Fields's body:   Hey Chris Fields if you don't put food in me I will die.Chris Field's brain:   That's extortion you bastard

Under your very stupid logic everything is extortion.  The only reason people do anything is to avoid bad consequences.   The whole reason we give aid to Israel is because they claim without the aid they wouldn't be able to survive as a country.  How is that not the exact same thing as what Palestine is doing?   The only reason Palestine is getting fucked with is because they don't have as many lobbyists as Israel and Republicans find it much easier to be evil to browner people.  

Chris Fields
Chris Fields

As the argument is laid out by Ellison this isnt foreign aid, its extortion.  Here's why:

When the rationale is lets give Palestinians or anyone else for that matter our money OR else their children will be coerced by a cartoon mouse to hate people and commit atrocious acts, that's extortion.

Why wouldn't everyone draw up a cartoon mouse that preaches bigotry and violence? 

Aid given to Israel is part of a strategic national security plan that serves our best interest.  As a direct result the people of the United States, Israel and the Palestinians are more secure. 

 

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