CBS Sits Down With Ex-Girlfriend Accusing Democrat Ellison of Abuse

On Thursday, CBS Evening News continued the network’s track record of being the only broadcast network to report on the allegation of domestic violence against DNC deputy chairman and Minnesota Congressman Keith Ellison, which he denies. While both ABC and NBC had not said a word about the allegations since they broke late Saturday night, CBS sat down with Karen Monahan, the ex-girlfriend accusing the Congressman.

From the very beginning of the report, the network was treating the subject with the seriousness that it deserved. “Congressman Keith Ellison, deputy chairman of the Democratic National Committee and a candidate for Minnesota attorney general, has denied allegations that he abused his ex-girlfriend,” announced anchor Jeff Glor. “Tonight, Karen Monahan is speaking on camera for the first time about an incident she says happened nearly two years ago.”

Reporter Jericka Duncan wasted little time in getting to Monahan’s account of what happened:

I was still in bed, and I was laying across the bed on my stomach. I was listening to my podcast, and he walked in. He said, "I need you to take the trash out." And I kept-- because I was on my stomach-- I heard him and I just went like that and shook my head. And he looked at me and goes, "Hey, you (bleep) Hear me?" And then he looked at me. He goes b[*]tch, get the (bleep) Out of my house," and he started to try to drag me off the bed. That's when I put my camera on to video him.

 

 

And doing their due diligence as journalists, CBS also shared a soundbite from Minneapolis CBS affiliate WCCO who spoke with Ellison:

ESME MURPHY [WCCO Reporter]: Did you ever drag her off a bed by her feet?

KEITH ELLISON: No, absolutely not.

MURPHY: She has said and insisted there is a video of this. Is there a video?

ELLISON: There couldn't be. There couldn't be such a thing as that.

“Monaghan says she never reported the incident to police and says being dragged off the bed was the only time Ellison got physical with her during their three-year relationship,” Duncan added. In answering a question about people saying he apologized to her, Monahan declared: “He didn't apologize for putting his hands on me. One is enough.”

In wrapping up the report, Duncan noted that Monahan claimed to have a video of the alleged abuse but didn’t want to put it out there because it was so traumatic for her. “She also says she should not have to release the video in order to be believed. Jeff, she believes her words should be enough,” Duncan explained before reiterating that Ellison denied the charges.

Up until Thursday, the three networks had not dedicated any serious amount of time to the allegations. As of Tuesday, the Media Research Center had found that the 25 seconds CBS This Morning allocated to the story (in the first three days) meant they gave domestic violence claims against former White House aide Rob Porter 153 times the airtime. Thursday’s report lasted just over three minutes.

The transcript is below, click "expand" to read:

 

 

CBS Evening News
August 16, 2018
6:44:57 p.m. [3 minutes 3 seconds]

JEFF GLOR: Congressman Keith Ellison, deputy chairman of the Democratic National Committee and a candidate for Minnesota attorney general, has denied allegations that he abused his ex-girlfriend. Tonight, Karen Monahan is speaking on camera for the first time about an incident she says happened nearly two years ago. She sat down with Jericka Duncan.

[Cuts to video]

JERICKA DUNCAN: 44-year-old Karen Monahan says in September of 2016, she and her then-boyfriend, Minnesota Democratic Congressman Keith Ellison, got into a heated argument that scared her.

KAREN MONAHAN: I was still in bed, and I was laying across the bed on my stomach. I was listening to my podcast, and he walked in. He said, "I need you to take the trash out." And I kept-- because I was on my stomach-- I heard him and I just went like that and shook my head. And he looked at me and goes, "Hey, you (bleep) Hear me?" And then he looked at me. He goes bitch, get the (bleep) Out of my house," and he started to try to drag me off the bed. That's when I put my camera on to video him.

DUNCAN: Did you call anybody after that?

MONAHAN I call a friend, and I said, "I'm at the lowest of the low."

DUNCAN: Monaghan says she saved the video on her computer. This past Saturday, Monahan’s 25-year-old son, Austin, posted a message on Facebook, saying that in the middle of 2017, he found the video, almost two minutes long, showing Keith Ellison dragging his mother off a bed and telling her to get out of his house.

KEITH ELLISON: I'm mortified, absolutely stunned that she would say this.

DUNCAN: Ellison spoke to our CBS station WCCO in Minneapolis about the allegations.

ESME MURPHY [WCCO Reporter]: Did you ever drag her off a bed by her feet?

ELLISON: No, absolutely not.

MURPHY: She has said and insisted there is a video of this. Is there a video?

ELLISON: There couldn't be. There couldn't be such a thing as that.

MURPHY: And why couldn't there be?

ELLISON: Because I never did that.

DUNCAN: Why speak out now?

MONAHAN: I followed my gut, the gut they kept trying to push down.

DUNCAN: Monaghan says she never reported the incident to police and says being dragged off the bed was the only time Ellison got physical with her during their three-year relationship. For people who might look at this and go, "She said it only happened one time, and he did apologize right after."

MONAHAN He didn't apologize for putting his hands on me. One is enough.

[Cuts back to live]

DUNCAN: Monaghan says she has the video. She says it's too traumatic for her, so she has chosen not to share it with anyone. She also says she should not have to release the video in order to be believed. Jeff, she believes her words should be enough. But, again, Ellison vehemently denies those allegations.

GLOR: Okay, Jericka Duncan, thank you.


Please support NewsBusters today! (a 501c3 non-profit production of the Media Research Center)

DONATE
CyberAlerts Campaigns & Elections Bias by Omission Double Standards Political Groups Liberals & Democrats Broadcast Television ABC Good Morning America World News Tonight CBS CBS Evening News CBS This Morning NBC NBC Nightly News Today Video Keith Ellison Jeff Glor