GOP challenger ready for Ellison

chris fields.jpgA retired Marine major says he wants to run against 3-term DFL Congressman Keith Ellison next year. Chris Fields announced his campaign today and says he plans to run against Ellison in 2012.

Fields, 44, spent 21 years in the Marines, recently as a logistics officer. He retired Aug. 1. Fields said he also worked on Wall Street before joining the Marines, earning a commission and graduating from college in the service. He grew up in New York City and moved to Minneapolis when he recently married.

He says he thinks Ronald Reagan’s message of prosperity and security would serve the 5th District well.

“I grew up in the South Bronx, dirt poor,” Fields says. “I know what its like to go to bed hungry. And I remember those hard times, and then there was a fellow by the name of Ronald Reagan came along, and all of the sudden, we get rid of double digit unemployment, we get ride of double digit inflation, and the gas lines of the 70s and over the course of the years, he energized people and made people feel like it was OK.”

Fields said he’ll be seeking the GOP endorsement to run against Ellison.

“Folks are hurting out there,” he says. “Folks are hurting across the whole district, and folks are hurting particularly in North Minneapolis, and since Congressman has been in office, folks haven’t gotten a lot of relief economically.”

Ellison beat his last challenger, Republican Joel Demos, by a better than 2-to-1 margin.

  • cyberstorm

    Oh yeah – a Marine that worked on Wallstreet.

    Then he brings in “reagan” . Hey – I remember Reagan very well. Memories are solid of that time – try evoking the wizard of oz.

  • Leah

    Better yet… a republican who cares about North Minneapolis? Yeah, right. Nice try buddy.

  • Tom

    This outsider has no chance of defeating our Congressman. How long has Fields exactly lived in the Fifth District? Like 2 weeks? Rep. Ellison is one of the strongest voices for working families in Washington. Fields talks the talk, but Ellison walks the walk.

  • Candi

    What exactly has Keith Ellison done for residents of his District? I live in his District and have written several letters and emails to him on both education and healthcare issues. All the responses I gotten from him just restate his position and ignore any questions or concerns I have written about.

    How often has Representative Ellison met with constituents in his District? He couldn’t find the time to meet with concerned parents at North High when the school was being closed.

    He seems to spend an awful lot of time talking about International issues but not much on issues affecting North Minneapolis. What aid has he helped garner for residents who have suffered extensive damage from the tornado last May?

  • Tyler

    Finally, someone who understands that “serving the country” doesn’t mean upping your own political profile. It means sacrificing, which Chris has done for 21 years.

    I’d be honored to have Chris represent me, and he is the guy for the 5th!

  • Esox

    Keith’s done an awesome job in Congress, and I’ll be voting for him again. But I’m not gonna rip someone just because he’s a Republican. That’s just plain dumb.

  • Eddie G

    Are you guys kidding? Ellison couldnt even get Obama to hook him up with FEMA funds. The Hard Rock and other places arei closing; people will loose their jobs but not Ellison. I bet the families who dont have jobs either cant hear or are tired of hearing his voice. Its about time someone stood up to him. People have been waiting on someone to call him out for not doing his J.O.B.

  • Bob

    I’d like to personally “Thank” Major Fields for his service to the United States and for deciding to run against Representative Ellison.

    Great article – I find the posted comments from it, thus far, somewhat revealing. Hey believe it or not there are Republicans who actually live in and care about Minneapolis – even in North Minneapolis – but I guess that’s just completely impossible to believe.

    What I find absolutely amazing are some of the people I have meet over the last eighteen years, while living in Minneapolis, who say they are Democrats, who claim the Democratic Party is about open-mindedness, diversity and for the people – then actually go out and attack a retired Veteran for attempting to run against a Democrat, while dismissing Chris Field’s candidacy on the mere fact he’s a Republican (nice open-mindedness). I guess you need to be community organizer to actually care about your community and heaven forbid anyone who has not been in government to run for Public Office.

    Finally, there is one thing I would like to clear-up – Chris Fields has lived in the 5th CD since the end of April, because before then he was busy defending our nation. He meets the residency requirements for running for US Congress and by-the-way Representative Ellison is from Detroit, MI – how long was he a resident it before he ran for the State Legislature? Truly, it really doesn’t matter – just curious.

    So, Chris congratulations on deciding to run for US Congress and I – unlike some other people – applaud anyone who decides to run for Public Office – Good Luck in 2012.

  • Shazbot

    At this point I am so fed up with congress I would give anyone a look. Keith is just as partisan and dysfunctional as Michelle Bachmann, with less clout in his party.

  • Brianna

    Keith Ellison is a big spending liberal who needs to find a new job…Go Chris!

  • James

    If you are sick and tired of what North Minneapolis or the 5th district has turned into in regards to poverty, lack of jobs, terrible schools and poor housing look no further then the party that has been in charge for the past 50 years to blame. Minneapolis and the first ring of suburbs have been entirely dominated by the Democratic party and exactly what have they done for your votes? When you finally get fed up with the Democratic party and their inability to provide real jobs, better schools and better housing, seek out the party that has real market ideas. JFK said it best. The best way to fight poverty is to provide a job. Since then the dfl has done everything it can to kill job creation.

  • Carl

    I’m thrilled to see this article. Finally there is something to get excited about politically in Minneapolis and the 5th CD. A new perspective is desperately needed in this region, and hopefully Chris Fields can be the one to provide it.

  • Nancy

    How refreshing! It is so energizing to see a hard-working, self-educated, dedicated American and patriot running for office in an area of the country where he is most needed. No one can better understand the needs of the people and the sacrifices needed to lift the people of this district than a Marine who has served his country, during peace and during wartime, and served the citizens not only of this country but those in less advantaged nations as well. The people of this district would be blessed to have such an educated and devoted man serving them in Congress. Having started his life with nothing, as opposed to being born into privilege, Chris Fields will bring to this district the wherewithal and drive to forge forward in difficult times and prosper in the future. The district needs and deserves an assiduous, loyal and committed Congressman and Chris Fields’ background and dedication to his country prove that he has exactly what it takes.

  • Brownson

    Great to see someone stepping up to take on Keith Ellison and his tax and spend, lockstep with Obama agenda. We need someone in Washington like Chris.

  • Julie

    I think it takes courage and integrity to serve well…something a marine is very well equipped to do! Change can be scary, but we all should want to know what chris fields has to say whether we are a republican or a democrat!

  • Andy

    Keith Ellison voted for the Patriot Act. All decent people should be opposed to him.

  • Donald Allen

    It’s time that the facts be brought forward. Congressman Ellison is a nice guy. But the continence of doing things well that don’t need to be done takes away the focus on real issues. Ellison, since he’s been in office has not addressed the heinous records of Met Council and MnDOT as it pertains to the hiring of “people from Minnesota.’ (I won’t even play the race card on that.”

    Secondly – how can this congressman, whose office is inside of the Minneapolis Urban League sleep at night when he knows the MUL is broke, cutting staff and programs and he walks around like a wanna-be celebrity.

    I agree it will be hard for anyone to bet Ellison, but he has already beaten himself.

    I n closing, I wish MPR would give credit to IBNN NEWS for starting the ball rolling.

  • D. Allen-IBNN NEWS

    The folks who will kill Fields run for congress is the Republican Party of Minnesota. Tony Sutton, Craig Westover, Matt Steele, Carlton Crawford, Bob Olson are all antiquated, in some cases racist and don’t know anything about how to deliver counter-messaging to the media and general public when the dripping wet liberal MPR press posts a story like this.

    Just ask Michele Bachmann’s staff.

    The “toilet-paper” MN GOP is only good for wiping their own behinds. As far as supporting the people of north Minneapolis, or in this case Blacks; the MN GOP does NOT have a mechanism in place to change the perception of what the Republican Party is. “Sending a Negro into the community in some attempt to represent you like Black people is shameful and disrespectful.

    I’ve asked the MN GOP the following questions:

    1. Will you do outreach in the communities of color? A: No

    2. What is your plan? Have none

    3. How many Black staff members do you have?


    4. Was Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. really a Republican? A: Yes

    5. Who cares? A: Someone in the Black Community

    The Minnesota GOP is clueless, without leadership and is on a collision course for disaster because they won’t be able to support any of the first time Tea Party legislators that won in the last election.

    Fileds is a good guy, but this is Minnesota Politics. Unless, the $400k+ in-debt MN GOP can get new leadership and raise money and support Fields, this campaign might just go through the motions like Joel Demos’ campaign in 2010.

    The race for the MN 5th CD should be a $3 million dollar campaign for both the Democrat and Republican candidate. Congressman Ellison doesn’t have to spend a dime, simply because the MN GOP doesn’t have any money to even by toilet paper.

    It’s the right time – but with the wrong people.

    Let’s not forget how Barb Davis White got stiffed by Stanley Hubbard and the MN GOP in 2008.

    In closing, the Republican Party of Minnesota here in the cold Jim Crow needs a re-branding. They don’t know ANY of the important issues; and the word “Republican” is a dead term in Minnesota.

  • Donna

    I am excited about a real candidate running for this office. Thank you Chris for your service as a veteran and now being willing to represent us in the House.

    Too many times the GOP has just ignored this district. We can’t ignore this area any longer. With unemployment getting worse, people losing their homes and businesses closing it’s time to step up and Chris is that candidate.

    Ellison has been funded by more money from outside his district and even outside the state than any candidate running for this seat. The person that we elect should be someone that is representing us, not outside sources.

  • John

    Obama and Keith are both lawyers turned “community leaders” turned politicians. Many don’t consider those to be real jobs where you get a feel for how the world really works. Maybe CD5 will be better represented by a Marine who is a man of action rather than these softies who have so far failed to improve the economy with their flawed theories and failed stimulus plans.