Ellison Trying to Rebuild Trust With Voters After Contentious Election

After his four-point victory in a contentious race for the Minnesota Attorney General’s Office, Keith Ellison has been making the rounds on local media outlets to rebuild trust with voters.

Just days after his win, The Star Tribune ran a “thank-you” letter written by Ellison to the voters in which he ensures them that he will continue “fighting for their rights and for their prosperity.”

“I ran for attorney general to carry on the office’s longstanding tradition—built for the past six decades by great attorneys general from Walter Mondale on—of ensuring a fair economy and civil rights for the people of Minnesota,” Ellison writes. “I’m deeply honored that the voters of Minnesota have asked me to keep building it.”

Then on Friday, Ellison sat down for MPR’s “Politics Friday” program to discuss the “political fight” of his life, referencing the domestic-abuse allegations that weighed down his campaign from start to finish.

“Voters don’t know what kind of AG I’m going to be,” Ellison told MPR’s Mike Mulcahy. “They know what I’ve promised and they know what my history says and so they’re giving me a chance.”

“I’m going to make them happy they chose me by doing the best job I can possibly do. But I understand that trust has to be rebuilt, earned, deepened, strengthened, even for the people that trust me, they’re still like, ‘what have you done for me lately?’” Ellison continued.

He announced on the show that he will be hosting a series of “listening sessions” open to the public, the first of which will occur Dec. 4 in Duluth.

On Sunday, Ellison spoke with WCCO’s Esme Murphy about concerns that he would use his new position to undermine the Trump administration.

“I didn’t run for attorney general to fight with Trump,” he said. “I may end up fighting with Trump, but my point is to protect Minnesotans. That has to do with drug pricing; that has to do with the affordability of college, where there are some for-profit colleges taking advantage of people. We are not going to let that kind of stuff happen. But there are things that might bring me into conflict with the federal government.”

Ellison announced his transition staff Monday, which will be chaired by former Deputy Attorney General Richard Allyn. Members of the transition team include State Sen. Bobby Joe Champion (D-Minneapolis), State Rep. Jamie Becker-Finn (D-Roseville), and DFL-endorsed candidate for attorney general Matt Pelikan, whom Ellison beat in the primaries.

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Anthony Gockowski is managing editor of The Minnesota Sun. Follow Anthony on Twitter. Email tips to [email protected]

Photo “Keith Ellison” by Keith Ellison’s Facebook Page.

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