The freshman Democratic Representative Ilhan Omar from Minnesota is about to get some serious competition for the 2020 congressional election, and it about time.
Chris Kelley has served Minnesota’s Fifth District for over 20 years in the Minneapolis Police Department. He has also served his country, first in the Army and then with the Army Reserves, where he has collected 11 medals for his excellent service. During his time in the US military, he has completed three tours of Iraq while being in the Army, one during Operation Desert Storm and two more during Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Now he seeks to serve his country in another way, by running for the House of Representatives against Ilhan Omar.
He, like many others from his district, is tired of her constant efforts for publicity and the lack of work she actually does for her constituents. His frustrations with her came to a head this past spring when she made comments trivializing the attacks made on September 11, 2001.
Omar was the featured speaker at a Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) event in Los Angeles in March. While speaking, she talked about the struggle of Muslims in America. She said, “For far too long have we lived with the discomfort of being a second-class citizen and, frankly, I’m tired of it, and every single Muslim in this country should be tired of it.”
But then she made a comment that left many Americans wondering where her true loyalties lie. She added, “CAIR was founded after 9/11 because they recognized that some people did something and that all of us were starting to lose access to our civil liberties.”
Immediately, her “some people did something” remark was front-page news. The New York Post, among others, made sure of it by posting her comment along with a picture of the burning twin towers with the phrase “Here’s your something. 2,977 people dead by terrorism.”
It was then that Kelley realized the choice was no longer his, he had to stand up and act. To make a difference and act against Omar and her blatant disregard for American lives.
Kelley said, “September 11 was a terrible loss of life, not just for police officers and firefighters and other first responders, but 3,000 people and non-combatants died, and to be dismissive of that was an outrage.” He added, “I could sit and complain, or I could do something about it.”
And while Kelley tried to run as a GOP contender for the Senate in 2016 and failed, he is more determined than ever to succeed. This time, he is running for the House as an Independent.
He says that Omar, in her quest for celebrity, has left her constituents without a voice or support. He aims to be different. He says, “There seems to be a theme to some of the current politicians who are being overly vocal: let’s attack the people who do the jobs, yet they won’t do theirs.”
In contrast, he says of himself, “I believe I can be a positive voice in standing up for people in our country and for our first responders and the people every day on the frontlines.” And he added, “As former military, I am here to serve and not further my status. I want to do a good job for the people I represent, and I don’t have a personal agenda. I’m passionate about service, and I just want to be able to continue that.”
Kelley says he plans to run “a positive fact-based campaign.” He says, “I won’t be bringing in controversy and scandal. I will be bringing firsthand knowledge of the things that are going on in the community as an officer.”
“I see a lot every day – the homelessness, the opioid crisis: I want to bring these things to the forefront and put some ideas on the table on how to deal with them,” Kelley said.
Another difference between him and the liberal Omar is his stance on the border situation. About that he says, “I believe in having a secure border; if you don’t have a country, you don’t have a border, and our border agents are doing a great job, but they are being overwhelmed, and Congress isn’t giving them the tools they need.”
“I want to do anything I can to make people’s lives better; I just want to sit and listen to people and make some positive change.”