Golden Valley Rep. Keith Ellison (DFL-MN) and Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva (D-AZ), co-chairs of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, were quick to cheer Tuesday’s termination of the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy that banned openly gay men and women from serving in the military. The two released a statement praising the end of the ban:
The end of the discriminatory "Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell" policy is a milestone for civil rights in America. The Congressional Progressive Caucus has long supported the LGBT community in the battle against this failed policy, which is responsible for the discharge of more than 13,000 highly qualified American service members.
On Tuesday, Ellison also sent out a flurry of tweets about his position on various details of Pres. Barack Obama’s jobs bill, including:
- “Support Obama's suggested $1.5T in taxes to cut debt; includes taxes on wealthiest. Can't support bene cuts to SS, M'care, M'caid.”
- “@admiralmpj, I do not object to Jobs Act. I also support Buffett Rule, but I do NOT support cuts to medicare, medicaid.”
- “Also like Obama idea of closing the carried interest loophole for investment fund managers.”
The statements weren't always welcomed—even by Democrats:
- "@keithellison You need t stop spreading false information about POTUS' budget deficit plan. #CryBabyCaucus," wrote @PragObots.
Ellison was one of several Democrat leaders who joined Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood at St. Paul’s Union Depot to praise work the Central Corridor light-rail line and boost support for the president’s jobs bill, as reported in the Star Tribune.
LaHood called the project "a model for America" and said the Jobs Act would provide an additional $9 billion for other bus and rail transit and $4 billion for high-speed rail.
"There is an enormous amount of money ... that would be available to put thousands of people to work," he said.
But state GOP Chairman Tony Sutton wasn't impressed. He said the jobs are temporary work "that's not going to help get this country's fiscal house in order and ... isn't going to help get the economy back on track."