I spoke with Pete Bisbee a month ago and noted my conversation here on Power Line. Bisbee is executive director of the Republican Attorneys General Association. His mission is to expand the ranks of Republican attorneys general. Although Minnesota has not elected a Republican attorney general since 1966, he told me they saw an opportunity in Jim Schultz’s race against incumbent Keith Ellison this year.

Following our conversation I sent Bisbee a copy of my 2018 Weekly Standard column “Can Keith Ellison turn lawman?” When I spoke with Bisbee last month he told me that RAGA had “just placed a $1M [advertising] reservation in October.” The video embedded in RAGA’s Fire AG Ellison seems to draw on my own 2018 Standard column and it is now running in Minnesota.

I caught only a few seconds at the tail end of the 30-second ad last night and went looking for it online. That’s how I happened on to reporter/anchor Esme Murphy’s “fact-check” of the ad on the local CBS affiliate last night. Murphy is a ludicrously hardcore DFL partisan. I have embedded her “fact-check” segment at the bottom of this post. She promoted it via Twitter in advance of the broadcast.

In her segment Murphy found that a carjacking depicted in the ad occurred in Miami rather than Minneapolis. However, carjackings in Minneapolis look identical to the one depicted in the ad. No one was misled by that.

She declared herself unable to confirm unspecified facts in the ad. She quotes Ellison denying them or stating they are “out of context.” She turns to University of Minnesota Humphrey School Professor Lawrence Jacobs judging something in the ad to be “just wrong.” I reached out to Murphy last night via the tweets below.

I know Professor Jacobs. At his invitation I appeared on a panel he moderated at the Humphrey School a few years ago. I contacted him via email last night:

Dear Professor Jacobs: I sent the Republican AG Association some of my work on Ellison. I only caught a few seconds of [the RAGA ad], but I did see Esme Murphy’s segment on it. I believe that the ad is based in part on my work. Would you please advise what fact(s) asserted in the ad you believe to be in error? I would like to follow up if appropriate.
Thank you for your courtesies.
Best regards,
Scott Johnson

I haven’t heard back either from Esme Murphy or Professor Jacobs.

Theo Keith of the local FOX affiliate also fact-checked the RAGA ad last night. His segment is posted here. He seems to think that viewers might believe the “call from prison” to be authentic rather than a dramatization. He declares it “false.” I don’t think anyone would take the phone call as an authentic recording.

The ad relies in part on Ellison’s support for Sara Jane Olson/Kathleen Soliah and Assata Shakur in a National Lawyers Guild fundraiser for Olson/Soliah in October 2001. I posted the text of Ellison’s remarks in “Who is Keith Ellison? (8)” The speech is illustrative of Ellison’s support for cop killers and his hustling on behalf of the Nation of Islam, which was still part of his gig in 2001.

Keith disparages the criticism of Ellison as old news. Keith doesn’t dispute the underlying facts. Has FOX 9 ever reported them? Ellison’s support for cop killers is true, but Keith doesn’t say so. You’d think voters might find it relevant in the election for Minnesota attorney general. Keith continues with an assessment of the accusation that Ellison blames cops for “for the damage that rioters caused.” He finds that “not the whole story.” I infer that it’s part of the story even by the lights of Theo Keith.

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