(JTA) — Rep. Keith Ellison, the first Muslim elected to Congress, has endorsed Sen. Bernie Sanders for the Democratic presidential nomination.
“This is not a ‘no you can’t’ campaign. This is not a diminish your dreams kind of campaign. This is a ‘believe in the possibilities we can do together’ kind of campaign,” Ellison, D-Minn., said of the Sanders bid for presidency in introducing the candidate Sunday at the Black America Forum in Minneapolis.
“This is the right campaign if you believe this country can be better than it was,” he added while also praising Barack Obama as “a great president.” He called Sanders, I-Vt., his “dear friend.”
Ellison asserted that Sanders “believes in true racial justice and equality.”
In endorsing Sanders over Hillary Clinton, the former secretary of state and senator, for the 2016 Democratic nomination, Ellison went against the Congressional Black Caucus PAC and prominent caucus member Rep. John Lewis, D-Ga.