Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN) broke down in tears while testifying Thursday at a House Homeland Security Committee hearing on "Muslim radicalization" in the U.S.

Ellison became emotional while telling the story of a Muslim firefighter who lost his life as a first responder on 9/11.

"Mr. Hamdani bravely sacrificed his life to try to help others on 9/11," he said.

"After the tragedy," Ellison continued, "some people tried to smear his character ... solely because of his Islamic faith. Some people spread false rumors and speculated that he was in league with the attackers because he was a Muslim. But it was only when his remains were identified that these lies were exposed. Mohammad Salman Hamdani was a fellow American who gave his life for other Americans. His life should not be identified as just a member of an ethnic group or just a member of a religion, but as an American who gave everything for his fellow Americans."

This video is from MSNBC, broadcast March 10, 2011.