MINNEAPOLIS – Speaking at a health care town hall, Rep. Keith Ellison, the Democratic National Committee Vice Chairman, accused President Donald Trump of running a dictatorship eager to control what people learn.
“They’re attacking your right to know when they attack the whole press,” Ellison said, “It’s not about one press outlet, every dictatorship wants to control what people learn, and you need to know that.”
Ellison said that while he and other Democrats might take issue with CNN or other networks’ reporting at a given time, Trumps’ broad condemnation of the media as a whole was a step too far.
Ellison also went after Trump’s appointment of Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch and his confirmation process.
“This guy over here he’s attacking the freedom of the judiciary,” Ellison said, “I mean seriously the court system, this guy Gorsuch who is totally against workers, this guy Gorsuch he couldn’t even get any Democrats to support him, so they don’t change the nominee they changed the rules. Which shows that they don’t care about playing by the rules.”
Gorsuch was confirmed following Senate Republicans’ use of the so-called nuclear option. Prior to that Supreme Court nominees must clear a 60 vote threshold to end debate on a nominee before proceeding to a vote on the nomination itself. Republicans voted to change the Senate rules so a simple majority also ended debate.
The 60 vote threshold used to be true for all judicial nominees, but in November 2013 then Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) and Senate Democrats executed the option in response to Republicans blocking dozens of former President Barack Obama’s judicial appointments.
Ellison also alluded to the supposed Russian influence in Trump’s election victory last year.
“He has aligned himself with a hostile foreign power to destroy American democracy,” claimed Ellison.
Ellison promised the Democratic Party is “organizing a resistance” in response to the Trump presidency.