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Ellison: 'I Acted Beneath My Personal Standard'

Congressman Keith Ellison said he was acting as a father rather than public servant when a debate with Chris Fields took an uncivil turn Thursday.

After a near boxing match between Rep. Keith Ellison and his opponent Chris Fields during a debate on KFAI Radio Thursday morning, Ellison released a statement apologizing for his temper flare:

"Today during a radio broadcast debate, my opponent made false statements about an intensely personal family matter. My teenage daughter was present in the next room listening to the debate.

"In response to my opponent's false statement, I made an uncivil reference to him. I should not have done so. I acted beneath my personal standard as a public official, and I apologize.

"In the course of this campaign, we have been focused on creating economic prosperity for working families, protecting our constitutional right to vote, and making sure that everybody counts and everybody matters—and yet, my opponent has repeatedly and personally attacked me.

"His untrue reference to the terms of my divorce was over the line, but my comment to him was over the line too. His tactics are no excuse for my departure from civility.

"I will not allow this to happen again, and I regret my action."

Ellison at one point called Fields a "lowlife scumbag" and also repeatedly called him a liar.

READ MORE ABOUT THE HEATED DISCUSSION

Patch also received confirmation that Fields will be releasing a statement this afternoon as well. Patch will update readers as more information becomes available.

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Other related stories:

  • AUDIO: Hear the Low Points of Today's Fractious Ellison-Fields Debate
  • REPLAY: Rep. Keith Ellison Calls Opponent A "Scumbag"—Twice
  • What Happened in KFAI Studio During Keith Ellison-Chris Fields Debate Fracas
Greg Staffa October 19, 2012 at 01:22 PM
Mr Ellison, When you make promises to meet and possibly help a homeless person which you did to me personally not once but twice and then blocks me when it does not fit your schedule and you don't even have the courage to tell it to me personally. And then I hear you in this debate and your actions? It makes me wonder if this is the real Keith Ellison? If Keith Ellison can't keep his word to a homeless person, who will he keep his word to?
Jesse Lykken October 20, 2012 at 06:33 AM
Rep. Ellison, why are you apologizing for calling a person you believe to be a liar, "a liar"? You have absolutely nothing for which to apologize. Please stop!
Susan Mundahl October 24, 2012 at 01:32 PM
Fields is being a predator and I support Ellison in standing up to him.
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