Peter King

Group Spearheading Anti-Muslim Witch Hunt to Honor Peter King

Congressman Peter King (R-NY) will receive an award tonight from the right-wing Center for Security Policy, the group led by Frank Gaffney that is behind the anti-Muslim witch hunt advocated by King’s Republican colleague Michele Bachmann.

Last year, King hosted roundly-criticized hearings on the “radicalization” of Muslim-Americans and continued to make the false claim that 80 percent of U.S. mosques are “controlled by radical imams.” While King did not sign Bachmann’s letters targeting Muslim-American officials serving in the Obama administration, Gaffney was behind the misleading information that led to Bachmann’s letters.

Along with the Family Research Council’s Jerry Boykin, who authored the CSP’s “Team B II Report, Sharia: The Threat to America,” Gaffney warned that Huma Abedin and other Obama administration officials are part of a stealth Muslim Brotherhood infiltration of the U.S. government. The CSP even hosted a National Press Club briefing by Andy McCarthy to defend Bachmann’s witch hunt. However, when asked about Gaffney’s support for birther conspiracy theories or his belief that Obama is a secret Muslim, McCarthy admitted that Gaffney’s views were “nutty.”

Gaffney may be giving King his “Keeper of the Flame” award, but he accused King’s leader, House Speaker John Boehner, of “parroting the Muslim Brotherhood line” by denouncing Bachmann’s witch hunt. King is even receiving the award despite signing Grover Norquist’s anti-tax pledge, as Gaffney believes that Norquist is a Muslim Brotherhood agent, a claim that has gotten Gaffney banned from two leading conservative conferences.

While Condemning Religious Bigotry, Romney Aligns Himself With Anti-Muslim Activists

This morning on the Today Show Mitt Romney and Chris Christie repeated their call for Rick Perry to disassociate himself from pastor Robert Jeffress because of the pastor’s denigration of Romney’s Mormon faith. Yesterday, Christie even compared Jeffress to “those folks in New Jersey who disparaged in both parties my decision to appoint a Muslim judge” and said that any “campaign that associates itself with that type of comment is beneath the office of President of the United States, in my view.”

Ironically, one of the people who slammed Christie over his criticism of anti-Muslim activists is Jay Sekulow, who endorsed and introduced Romney at the Values Voter Summit last week and in 2008 was a member of Romney’s “National Faith and Values Steering Committee.”

In fact, Sekulow and his organization, the American Center for Law and Justice, which was founded by Pat Robertson, tried to prevent American Muslims from exercising their First Amendment rights by suing to block the construction of a mosque in lower Manhattan and also issued a pamphlet which claims that Sharia law is on the brink of eclipsing the U.S. Constitution that “devout Muslims cannot truthfully swear the oath to become citizens of the United States of America.” Tim Murphy pointed out the irony in Romney condemning anti-Muslim bigot Bryan Fischer while praising Sekulow, and People For the American Way urged Romney to disavow Sekulow in the same way he has urged Perry to “repudiate” Jeffress:

“Mitt Romney is right to criticize his rivals for silently standing by and accepting bigotry,” said Michael Keegan, President of People For the American Way. “Now it is time for him to apply those standards to his own campaign. The truly courageous position for Romney to take would be to stand up against religious bigotry of all stripes – including the GOP’s increasingly prevalent scapegoating of American Muslims.

“Romney endorser Jay Sekulow’s American Center for Law and Justice has suggested that devout Muslims cannot become true citizens of the United States. Sekulow himself has perpetuated the debunked claim that the Constitution is under a threat from Sharia law and was a leader of the extremist backlash against the building of an Islamic community center in lower Manhattan, including overseeing the ACLJ’s lawsuit attempting to stop the community center’s construction.

“Last weekend, Mitt Romney called Sekulow a ‘treasure.’ If Romney wishes to show that he is a true champion of the American values of religious freedom and tolerance, he must apply the same standard to his own endorsers as he does to those of Rick Perry.”

But Sekulow isn’t the only anti-Muslim activist in the Romney camp.

Walid Phares was recently named a foreign policy adviser to Romney. As the Council on American Islamic Relations pointed out in a letter [pdf] to Rep. Peter King, Phares has close ties to a Lebanese militiamen and even served as an official in a militia that was “implicated, by Israel’s official Kahan inquiry and other sources, in the 1982 massacre of civilian men, women and children at the Sabra and Shatila refugee camps in Lebanon.”

Phares also claims [pdf] that “jihadists within the West pose as civil rights advocates, interested solely in the ‘rights’ of their immigrant communities” in order for their “institutions [to] fall into their hands,” and warns of the “spread of Wahhabism” through Muslim infiltration of “the U.S. armed forces and ultimately even into the Pentagon.”

While Romney was willing to call out Jeffress and Fischer over their intolerant rhetoric, it is uncertain if he will apply that standard to his own campaign.

Right Wing Round-Up

Peter King Witness Called Groups Defending Gitmo Detainees "Anti-American," "Al Qaeda's Useful Idiots"

Rep. Peter King (R-NY recently announced the third in his series of hearings on the “radicalization of the Muslim-American community”—the GOP’s premier venue for demonstrating the kinds of attacks highlighted in PFAW’s latest Right Wing Watch: In Focus report “The Right Wing Playbook on Anti-Muslim Extremism.” As part of his hearings, King plans to call Thomas Joscelyn of the staunchly neoconservative Foundation for Defense of Democracies as a witness. Joscelyn, from his platform as a writer for the neoconservative Weekly Standard, has questioned the patriotism of organizations and individuals who spoke out against the treatment of prisoners at Guantanamo Bay, calling the ACLU “Al Qaeda’s useful idiots” and claiming that lawyers who represented accused terrorists “openly opposed the American government.”

In a 2009 column, Joscelyn called the American Civil Liberties Union “Al Qaeda’s Civil Liberties Union” and “al Qaeda’s useful idiots” because the group produced the video “Justice Denied: Voices From Guantanamo,” which featured five Muslims who were imprisoned and abused in Guantanamo Bay and never faced charges. “The ACLU has worked diligently to undermine America's stance in what was formerly known as the ‘war on terror,’” he wrote, “and has even been willing to disseminate propaganda on behalf of our jihadist enemies.” He went on to criticize the ACLU and the Obama administration for opposing the use of military commissions and supporting the right of due process under the law for accused terrorists: “The ACLU cannot tell the difference between us and our enemies--as its own propaganda shows. Therefore, it does not bode well for America's counterterrorism efforts that the Obama administration is in agreement with al Qaeda's useful idiots.”

Joscelyn also jumped on the right-wing smear campaign against Justice Department lawyers who once represented accused terrorists, writing: “Now, we don’t know what assignments these lawyers have taken on inside government. But we do know that they openly opposed the American government for years, on behalf of al Qaeda terrorists, and their objections frequently went beyond rational, principled criticisms of detainee policy.”

Joscelyn also charged the Center for Constitutional Rights with “crude anti-Americanism” because the group condemned bias against Muslim Americans. He also questioned whether accused terrorists should receive any legal representation at all:

CCR’s statement calls to mind the debate some months ago about the role of lawyers in the war on terror. Some have argued that by representing “unpopular” clients they are merely adhering to a noble legal tradition in the same manner as John Adams, who defended British soldiers years prior to the Revolutionary War. Granted, some lawyers probably are compelled by their own notions of legal principle. But not all of them are.

John Adams sought to create a free society in which all faiths can be practiced and none are enforced by the state. He succeeded.

This nation’s second president probably would not appreciate CCR’s smear of the nation he helped found. And CCR is not just standing up for the “right” of a terrorist to receive a fair trial. The organization doubts whether John Adam’s America can be fair to Muslims at all.

Right Wing Leftovers

  • Herman Cain has managed to make Alan Keyes seem reasonable, so that is quite an accomplishment.
  • Rep. Peter King will be holding a second round of hearings on "Muslim radicalization" next week.
  • Focus on the Family responds to allegations that the organization has given up the fight against gay marriage.
  • It looks like Liberty University will finally get a polling place on campus.
  • Finally, Gary Cass is very upset that the White House issued a proclamation recognizing LGBT Pride Month: "Christians know God is not mocked. We refuse to affirm their lie and the social chaos Obama and his allies want to impose, like redefining marriage ... Help us tell President Obama to repent for corrupting our children by publicly endorsing sinful perversion."

Right Wing Round-Up

  • PFAW: Progressive Organizations Criticize King for Targeting Muslims.
     
  • Mark Potok @ Hatewatch: Why Are Peter King’s Hearings So Loathsome? Let Us Count the Ways.
     
  • Nick @ Bold Faith Type: King Witness Attacked Congressman Ellison as Complicit in Terrorist Conspiracy.
     
  • Tyler Kingkade @ Iowa Independent: Ralph Reed: Marriage rights will not be deciding factor in GOP caucus.
     
  • Towleroad: Newt Gingrich Discusses Participation in Ousting Pro-Equality Iowa Supreme Court Justices Over Marriage Equality.
     
  • Joe.My.God: KANSAS: Lawmakers Call For Continued Criminalization Of LGBT Residents.
     
  • Evan Hurst @ Truth Wins Out: Racist, Homophobic Screed Published on Tennessee City Councilman’s Blog.

Land: Islam Hearings a "Great Opportunity" For Muslims to Prove They Are Not Terrorists

On Thursday, Rep. Peter King, in his capacity as chairman of the House Committee on Homeland Security, will kick off hearings which seek to investigate the "radicalization" of Muslims in the United States.

While lots of religious leaders are uniting in opposition to these hearings, others, like Richard Land, think they are a fantastic idea and a great opportunity for Muslims to prove that they are not terrorists ... and if they dare to object, they are only making things worse:

Dr. Richard Land, president of the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, praised the upcoming meetings for allowing Muslim leaders to separate themselves from Islamic terrorists and establish their loyalty to the United States.

“This is a great opportunity for the Muslim community to come forward and denounce terrorism,” Land told The Christian Post on Monday.

The long-time religious freedom expert said he would advise Muslim leaders to reject the acts of American terrorists – such as that of Faisal Shahzad, who attempted to detonate a car bomb in Times Square – and to aid authorities to stop the recruitment of American Muslims by terrorist groups.

“If they (Muslims) don’t do that and attack the questioning, they’re exacerbating the problem,” Land said.

For the record, let me point out that Land is currently serving his fifth term as a member of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom.

Right Wing Round-Up

  • PFAW: The GOP Takes Its War on Women to the States.
     
  • Jim Burroway @ Box Turtle Bulletin: Scott Lively Warns of “Outbreak of Homosexuality” In Moldova, Part of a “Secret Plan By the Homosexual Powers of the EU.”
     
  • Nick @ Bold Faith Type: Peter King's Own Witness Undermines his Claims.
     
  • Alan Colmes: Michele Bachmann Says She Opposes Government Shutdown; But She Voted For It.
     
  • Good As You: The Times' latest DOMA story: A Fisch-y disservice to the debate.
     
  • Steve Benen: The DOMA Move Has Plenty of Precedent.
     
  • Joe Sudbay @ Americablog: Mormon bigots already gearing up to repeal Maryland's marriage law.

Right Wing Round-Up

Anti-Muslim Activists Tied to Peter King Want to Ban Muslim Students Group

Brigitte Gabriel of ACT! for America, one of the leading anti-Muslim activists in the country, wants the University of California, Los Angeles to ban the Muslim Student Association. Gabriel is no marginal figure, as her group won a glowing endorsement from Rep. Susan Myrick (R-NC) and she will host Rep. Peter King (R-NY), who is using his perch as the Chair of the House Homeland Security Committee to launch investigations into Muslim American communities, on her premier talk show. In addition, ACT! for America’s David Yerushalmi was heavily influential in shaping legislation in Tennessee and Missouri that would make it a crime to practice Sharia law, the legal code of Islam.

ACT! for America recently announced that it wants UCLA to ban the campus chapter of the Muslim Student Association due to the groups purported links to radical Islam. “We at ACT for America are serving this petition to UCLA in our effort to ban the assembly of any group advocating the overriding of the laws of the United States Of America with their own set of laws on a publicly funded university such as UCLA,” says the group in a letter to UCLA’s Chancellor, “We are specifically sighting the Muslim Student Association in violation of this.”

The letter goes on to say, “We demand that they be removed from campus on the grounds that their purpose is to conduct a stealth jihad against America through the indoctrination of our youth on college campuses.”

Now that ACT! for America has made its extreme agenda even more obvious, does Congressman King agree with his allies at ACT! for America that universities should ban groups which represent Muslim students?

Right Wing Round-Up

  • PFAW: Tell Justice Clarence Thomas to Recuse Himself.
  • Slate: The Abortion Tax.
  • Alvin McEwen: Peter Sprigg, Family Research Council Comes Out With Another Distorted Study.
  • Adam Serwer: Peter King’s Muslim HUAC Hearings Are A Scene From His Own Personal Thriller.
  • Think Progress: NRA Head Wayne LaPierre On Tucson Shootings: ‘Government Policies Are Getting Us Killed.’

Right Wing Round-Up

  • PFAW: Tell Justice Clarence Thomas to Recuse Himself.
  • Slate: The Abortion Tax.
  • Alvin McEwen: Peter Sprigg, Family Research Council Comes Out With Another Distorted Study.
  • Adam Serwer: Peter King’s Muslim HUAC Hearings Are A Scene From His Own Personal Thriller.
  • Think Progress: NRA Head Wayne LaPierre On Tucson Shootings: ‘Government Policies Are Getting Us Killed.’

Right Wing Round-Up

Right Wing Round-Up

Right Wing Round-Up

Right Wing Round-Up

Wyoming May Follow Oklahoma and Consider Sharia Law Ban

Apparently, Sharia law is such a creeping threat to Wyoming that a Republican state legislator wants to make the “Equality State” consider a constitutional amendment barring judges from considering Islamic and international law. In November, Oklahomans passed a similar amendment, which was later blocked by a federal judge over its suspect constitutional grounds.

“To date, no Wyoming court rulings have been based on Islamic law, or Shariah,” the Billings Gazette reports, “But state Rep. Gerald Gay, R-Casper, said his proposed constitutional amendment, House Joint Resolution 8, is meant as a ‘pre-emptive strike’ to ensure judges don’t rely on Shariah in cases involving, for example, arranged marriages, ‘honor killings’ or usury cases.” Gay needs approval of two-thirds of the legislature and the governor's signature to place the amendment on the 2012 ballot.

According to the 2000 Association of Religion Data Archives, Wyoming’s two Muslim congregations have 263 adherents.

In Washington, Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) told conspiracy theorist Frank Gaffney that he wants to hold hearings on the creeping threat of Sharia law, and Homeland Security Committee Chairman Rep. Peter King (R-NY) is planning McCarthy-esque hearings on the country’s Muslim community.

While Gay pushes to stop the non-existent use of Islamic law in courts, the Wyoming State House today passed a bill to “direct Wyoming to not recognize marriages or civil unions between same-sex couples performed out of state, including foreign countries.”

Wyoming May Follow Oklahoma and Consider Sharia Law Ban

Apparently, Sharia law is such a creeping threat to Wyoming that a Republican state legislator wants to make the “Equality State” consider a constitutional amendment barring judges from considering Islamic and international law. In November, Oklahomans passed a similar amendment, which was later blocked by a federal judge over its suspect constitutional grounds.

“To date, no Wyoming court rulings have been based on Islamic law, or Shariah,” the Billings Gazette reports, “But state Rep. Gerald Gay, R-Casper, said his proposed constitutional amendment, House Joint Resolution 8, is meant as a ‘pre-emptive strike’ to ensure judges don’t rely on Shariah in cases involving, for example, arranged marriages, ‘honor killings’ or usury cases.” Gay needs approval of two-thirds of the legislature and the governor's signature to place the amendment on the 2012 ballot.

According to the 2000 Association of Religion Data Archives, Wyoming’s two Muslim congregations have 263 adherents.

In Washington, Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) told conspiracy theorist Frank Gaffney that he wants to hold hearings on the creeping threat of Sharia law, and Homeland Security Committee Chairman Rep. Peter King (R-NY) is planning McCarthy-esque hearings on the country’s Muslim community.

While Gay pushes to stop the non-existent use of Islamic law in courts, the Wyoming State House today passed a bill to “direct Wyoming to not recognize marriages or civil unions between same-sex couples performed out of state, including foreign countries.”

Right Wing Leftovers

  • After the Tucson shooting, an Arizona Republican District Chairman opposed by the Tea Party resigned, saying, “I don’t want to take a bullet for anyone.”
  • North Carolina State Rep. Larry Brown wants to end government funding for treating people with HIV since they’re living “perverted lifestyles.”
  • An Atlanta pastor raises money to help one of the architects of Uganda’s “Kill the Gays” bill.

Right Wing Round-Up

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Peter King Posts Archive

Brian Tashman, Thursday 09/20/2012, 11:00am
Congressman Peter King (R-NY) will receive an award tonight from the right-wing Center for Security Policy, the group led by Frank Gaffney that is behind the anti-Muslim witch hunt advocated by King’s Republican colleague Michele Bachmann. Last year, King hosted roundly-criticized hearings on the “radicalization” of Muslim-Americans and continued to make the false claim that 80 percent of U.S. mosques are “controlled by radical imams.” While King did not sign Bachmann’s letters targeting Muslim-American officials serving in the Obama... MORE >
Brian Tashman, Wednesday 10/12/2011, 1:40pm
This morning on the Today Show Mitt Romney and Chris Christie repeated their call for Rick Perry to disassociate himself from pastor Robert Jeffress because of the pastor’s denigration of Romney’s Mormon faith. Yesterday, Christie even compared Jeffress to “those folks in New Jersey who disparaged in both parties my decision to appoint a Muslim judge” and said that any “campaign that associates itself with that type of comment is beneath the office of President of the United States, in my view.” Ironically, one of the people who slammed Christie over his... MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Tuesday 09/13/2011, 6:00pm
PFAW: PFAW Foundation Demands that NY Town Clerks End Marriage Discrimination. Steve Benen: The candidates weren’t the only ones on display. David Weigel: Bachmann Asks: Can Gardisil Make Your Kids Retarded? Tim Murphy @ Mother Jones: Pediatrician: "The Problem is People Like Michele Bachmann." Zaid Jilani @ Think Progress Security: Peter King Laments First Amendment, Wants ‘Better Controls’ On Facebook, Twitter, And The Internet. Warren Throckmorton: David Barton again defends Glenn Beck as a Christian. MORE >
Brian Tashman, Monday 07/25/2011, 12:46pm
Rep. Peter King (R-NY recently announced the third in his series of hearings on the “radicalization of the Muslim-American community”—the GOP’s premier venue for demonstrating the kinds of attacks highlighted in PFAW’s latest Right Wing Watch: In Focus report “The Right Wing Playbook on Anti-Muslim Extremism.” As part of his hearings, King plans to call Thomas Joscelyn of the staunchly neoconservative Foundation for Defense of Democracies as a witness. Joscelyn, from his platform as a writer for the neoconservative Weekly Standard, has questioned the... MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Friday 06/10/2011, 5:25pm
Herman Cain has managed to make Alan Keyes seem reasonable, so that is quite an accomplishment. Rep. Peter King will be holding a second round of hearings on "Muslim radicalization" next week. Focus on the Family responds to allegations that the organization has given up the fight against gay marriage. It looks like Liberty University will finally get a polling place on campus. Finally, Gary Cass is very upset that the White House issued a proclamation recognizing LGBT Pride Month: "Christians know God is not mocked. We refuse to affirm their... MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Tuesday 03/08/2011, 6:44pm
PFAW: Progressive Organizations Criticize King for Targeting Muslims.   Mark Potok @ Hatewatch: Why Are Peter King’s Hearings So Loathsome? Let Us Count the Ways.   Nick @ Bold Faith Type: King Witness Attacked Congressman Ellison as Complicit in Terrorist Conspiracy.   Tyler Kingkade @ Iowa Independent: Ralph Reed: Marriage rights will not be deciding factor in GOP caucus.   Towleroad: Newt Gingrich Discusses Participation in Ousting Pro-Equality Iowa Supreme Court Justices Over Marriage Equality.   Joe.My.... MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Tuesday 03/08/2011, 11:32am
On Thursday, Rep. Peter King, in his capacity as chairman of the House Committee on Homeland Security, will kick off hearings which seek to investigate the "radicalization" of Muslims in the United States. While lots of religious leaders are uniting in opposition to these hearings, others, like Richard Land, think they are a fantastic idea and a great opportunity for Muslims to prove that they are not terrorists ... and if they dare to object, they are only making things worse: Dr. Richard Land, president of the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist... MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Monday 03/07/2011, 6:58pm
PFAW: The GOP Takes Its War on Women to the States.   Jim Burroway @ Box Turtle Bulletin: Scott Lively Warns of “Outbreak of Homosexuality” In Moldova, Part of a “Secret Plan By the Homosexual Powers of the EU.”   Nick @ Bold Faith Type: Peter King's Own Witness Undermines his Claims.   Alan Colmes: Michele Bachmann Says She Opposes Government Shutdown; But She Voted For It.   Good As You: The Times' latest DOMA story: A Fisch-y disservice to the debate.   Steve Benen: The DOMA Move Has... MORE >