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Newt Gingrich: I’d Support A Muslim Running For President Only If They’d Commit To ‘Give Up Sharia’

18 January 2012 Huffington Post 76 Comments Email This Post Email This Post

Newt Gingrich: I’d Support A Muslim Running For President Only If They’d Commit To ‘Give Up Sharia’

Newt Gingrich told a South Carolina town hall audience on Tuesday that he would be open to seeing a Muslim-American run for president, as long as the candidate denounced Sharia law and didn’t seek to impose his or her views on others.


At a town hall meeting in West Columbia, S.C., a man asked Gingrich if he would ever “support a Muslim-American running for president.”

“Would you endorse…a Muslim-American, [who] could possibly be running for president, given that we had a woman running for president in Hillary Clinton, and we had a Jewish-American, in Joe Lieberman, running for vice president?” he asked.

“A truly modern person who happened to worship Allah would not be a threat,” Gingrich replied. “A person who belonged to any kind of belief in Sharia, any kind of effort to impose that on the rest of us, would be a mortal threat.”

In the past, Gingrich has repeatedly decried Sharia, a legal code derived from Islam, and called for a federal law to pre-emptively bar its use in any U.S. courts. He didn’t soften his position on Tuesday, saying his support would be contingent on a candidate’s willingness to denounce Sharia.

“I think it would depend entirely on whether they would commit in public to give up Sharia,” he said, referencing his support for the bill and drawing cheers from listeners at the event. “If they’re a modern person integrated into the modern world, and they’re prepared to recognize all religions, that’s one thing. On the other hand, if they’re the Saudis, who demand that we respect them while they refuse to allow either a Jew or a Christian to worship in Saudi Arabia, that’s something different.”

He pointed to an acquaintance as an example of a “truly modern” Muslim.

“We have a friend in Arizona who serves in the U.S. Navy, who’s a medical doctor, who’s Muslim — but he’s a totally modern person, trying to find ways to bring Islam into modernity,” Gingrich said.

Former GOP presidential candidate Herman Cain said he wouldn’t be comfortable appointing a Muslim to a judgeship or cabinet position. He later apologized.

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76 Comments »

  1. Unlike Christian Candidates, right?

  2. Gee, Newt, how about you follow your own advice and don’t impose YOUR views on others…

  3. Why isn’t that the standard for Christians, then?

  4. huh? and these christian guys espouse their views on everyone.

  5. But he will allow a Christian to let his religion run things. Something wrong with these guys. Scariest thing, that 2 Catholics and a Mormon are top contenders when the so-called religious right always hated both groups.

  6. How about denouncing Church Law and Evangelism?

  7. Because people think Biblical Christian law is so much better? Have these people even read the Bible?

  8. That’s hilarious. You can force your views on others if you’re a christian, but not if you subscribe to any other beliefs.

  9. Supposed to sound more reasonable than Cain, but a completely meaningless statement only showing his ignorance of Sharia as well as his determination to pander to the worst of American xenophobia.

  10. Oh, Newt. The same guy who was going to speak to the NAACP about how black people need to seek paychecks instead of food stamps.

  11. So Muslim in name only? This is just ridiculous. Shouldn’t everyone be able to have their values? Its just Newt being Newt.

  12. So, should Christians and Jews be required to renounce their faithfulness to the law of Moses and the teachings of Jesus Christ? (As a Christian pastor, I wonder . . . ) And yet, Christian presidents have and will quote scripture–and we appreciate it when they do. I don’t want them quoting things like Psalm 137.9
    “Happy shall they be who take your little ones
    and dash them against the rock!”

  13. This imbecile–and the imbeciles that support his racism–are totally ignorant of the true roots of Sharia Law…it is based on Levitticus, not the Koran….

  14. Because Newt doesn’t IMPOSE is views on anyone…hypocrite.

  15. Nope, sorry Newt, that would be applying a religious test and that is against the Constitution. Further proof that you are no historian,, you are a hysterian.

  16. He is such a douchebag!

  17. But I appreciate or at least understand it when Barack Obama said, “May you go out with joy and be led forth in peace,” when he lit the White House Christmas tree.
    Isaiah 55.12:
    For you shall go out in joy,
    and be led back in peace;
    the mountains and the hills before you
    shall burst into song,
    and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.

  18. Would he ask a Jewish president to give up Kosher laws?

  19. Every time he opens his mouth he vomits more and more ignorant crap.

  20. Religion and state are supposed to be separate. So yes, don’t push your religion on me and we are cool. Be smart a good leader and don’t push your religion on me, you can be president.

  21. Too bad he isn’t running against a Muslim-American – that might be fun to watch – much more fun than the circus going on in the current Republican race. As it is, Newt is having problems with his Mormon-American opponent in the spring, as well as that Christian he will be facing this fall. The real question is which of his own moral failings is he willing to give up?

  22. I will support Newt if he denounces the Pope.

  23. If that’s the case, the same should be done for Christians.

  24. The force of belief attributed to Sharia Law within fundamentalist Islam is different than that of fundamentalist Christianity. Sharia is codified law.

    If you read the caption of the post here vs. the title given to the attached article vs. what Gingrich actually said, you can see in this case, Islamophobiatoday.com’s own prejudice coming through.

    From Islamophobiatoday.com, “as long as the candidate denounced Sharia law”, and then the quote, with ABSOLUTELY NO CONTEXT GIVEN, that the Muslim candidate should ‘give up Sharia’, with the still OUT OF CONTEXT quote used on the webpage.

    Gingrich in fact said, ““A truly modern person who happened to worship Allah would not be a threat,” Gingrich replied. “A person who belonged to any kind of belief in Sharia, any kind of effort to impose that on the rest of us, would be a mortal threat.”

    That seems pretty reasonable to me. I would expect the same response in regard to any candidate who had expressed any sort of commitment to any sort of legal system different from the one of the United States.

    While there is sometimes good stuff from Islamophobiatoday.com, I challenge the people running this Facebook page to refute my exposure of their prejudicial nature in this post.

  25. Maybe Gingrich and the rest of the Christian right should stop waging political wars against secular and gay Americans before lecturing a minority about “imposing their views” on others.

  26. I wonder if Mr. Gingrich, a Roman Catholic, is willing to give up Canon Law … ?

  27. Wow? You all sound so hateful, and that is very sad. I am certain that none of you are living morally clean lives before God so why stand in judgement when only God will judge us all.

  28. That’s awfully white of him.

  29. Funny how he doesn’t even acknowledge he’s doing precisely the same thing. I’m a Christian, and I oppose Gingrich vehemently for trying to establish a link between church and state!

  30. No president could ever have the power to impose a law-code other than that of the US upon the US. Gingrich’s call to ‘give up shari’ah’ is therefore totally meaningless. Statements such as his are made for one reason only – to encourage scapegoating of Muslims. They are at one with the claims made in 1960 that JFK would take his orders from the Vatican – i.e. racist, unAmerican drivel.

  31. How unbelievably hypocritical for a so-called follower of Christ

  32. Shameful shit.

  33. A Muslim running for president would, by nature, be already denouncing Sharia law as America is a country where men make the laws, not God. If borrowing from Sharia law = ruling by shari’a then Christian countries are ruled by Biblical law. But in Islam it doesn’t work that way. You can’t remove Sharia from its proper context (khilafah) and call it Sharia. These Islamophobes are so obnoxiously retarded, and hypocritical. They can impose their ideas and belief systems on everyone but no one else can. I understand that obviously you don’t want someone with opposing views to impose them on others, but if you have any sense, you would state it in a way that doesn’t implicate yourself.

  34. “and didn’t seek to impose his or her views on others.” … you mean like the far right Republicans do?

  35. no one asked him to give up communion or easter,etc and yet it is ok for him and others to impose their particular views on others or at least attempt to

  36. stupid beyond words…

  37. This page tends to stir bigotry and hatred more than understanding. I am certain the admin is not Muslim or they would know that this is haram or forbidden in true Islam to hate or condemn another persons religion.

  38. Well, DUH, Newt, I would hope that NO President would try to impose his religious beliefs on others . . .

  39. Art. 11. As the Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion; as it has in itself no character of enmity against the laws, religion, or tranquillity, of Mussulmen; and, as the said States never entered into any war, or act of hostility against any Mahometan nation, it is declared by the parties, that no pretext arising from religious opinions, shall ever produce an interruption of the harmony existing between the two countries.”

    This is the law of the land. It is the Treaty of Tripoli, ratified UNANIMOUSLY by the U.S. Senate in 1797, many of those signing having been part of the Constitutional Convention, that ratified the first Constitution in the history of the world that (deliberately) left out any mention of God or a Supreme Being. Signed by John Adams.

  40. Anything else on your list, Newt? SHEESH !

  41. He needs to define “Sharia”, many Republicans and pundits use that word too liberally

  42. This nation has equal rights, as I believer in such. The other candidates will give up their faiths as well, remove the Ten Commandents from all buildings, and please don’t mention ‘the Bible’ in regards to abortion, gay rights, same sex marriage, prayer in schools, or any other redneck religion.

  43. I’m all for people keeping their personal views out of politics regardless of their religion, but who Newt Gingrich to say this? A hypocrite, that’s what: along with nearly the entire Republican party. Right-wing conservatives like Newt are constantly pressing their Christian-based beliefs on the voters, such as illegalizing abortion, denying gays the right to serve in the military, and immigrant deportation. What ever happened to the SEPARATION OF CHURCH AND STATE?

  44. would he give up being a Christian

  45. Well he gave up following the Ten Commandments (adultery!), so I guess he expects others to give up their religious tenets as well.

  46. Ameena, you’re sweet and naive. No one is criticising his religion, only the attempt to force theirs on us and to vilify Islam. He’s ignorant about a lot, but he’s not stupid. He’s deliberately appealing to anti-Muslim bigotry in order to get a larger share of the evangelical votes. His hypocrisy knows no bounds. He is simply a most dishonorable man who does not deserve to hold high office.

  47. I’m sure someone’s already said this, but i’d vote for a Republican if they gave up being racist, homophobic, misogynist, xenophobic, hateful……

  48. In other words, if they pledged not to act like a Christian Conservative?

  49. Shariah laws state that it is not applicable outside Muslim countries … it is NOT for states with a different religion than Islam .. how else can we say that so morons would understand it ??????

  50. This guy is my favorite clown.

  51. Good luck ith all that

  52. wow…dont stereotype muslims but its ok to stereotype republicans…im an independent but i know republicans that are not any of the things some here are stereotyping them as…if you dont like stereotypes dont push them on others…for shame people…you are missing the point

  53. David, as a former Republican I agree many republicans are good folks. Can the good ones please take up politics? The choices this year are very flawed.

  54. Without making any kind of a value judgment one way or the other, I have to say that it is interesting the caveat Gingrich suggests to a Muslim running for president; isn’t the evangelical Christian right seeking “to impose” their “views on others” Think abortion, gay marriage, to name two. Just sayin’.

  55. What would Newt say if a candidate said a Catholic could run/become President “only when he publicly denounced Canon Law.” Same goes if they told aJew to denounce Judaic Law.

    Give me a break.

  56. But it’s ok for a teabagger racist, bigot christain fundamentalist not to.

  57. And I’d only vote for a thumper if they promised that they wouldn’t want to impose their views on anyone else … except that’s exactly what they keep on threatening (promising) to do. How do you spell hypocrite?: c-h-r-i-s-t-i-a-n

  58. I feel the same way about Christian presidents, Newt.

  59. i believe the real question is, why the fuck would a Muslim want to put shariah law on a Multi-cultural country, consisting of more Christians than Muslims?

  60. does the Newt understand the irony in his statement at all?

  61. Gee, if we could only get the christians to do the same thing.

  62. And just what the hell does Newt think Republicans are doing with Christianity? Staying neutral?

  63. now this guy is a scumbag

  64. What a hypocrite Gingrich and the other Republican candidates are since they are going about imposing their religious beliefs on others, particularly Santorum about gays and all the others about ending abortion rights. If this is not the imposition of right-wing religious social conservatism then what is. Yuck factor.

  65. Does that standard apply to Christians running as well….is Gingrich ready to DENOUNCE the Vatican? Of course not…because, as most evangelical zealots believe, he’s RIGHT and “those others” are wrong!

  66. Moment of “duh”: the five pillars of Islam (Prayer, alms, haj, fasting during Ramadan, affirmation that there is only ONE God ) are part of sharia law. So this genius would support a Muslim as long as they did not practice their faith?

  67. Maybe we should require all the Christian candidates to do the same…

  68. Wow, a lot of hate here for Christians.

  69. What of the 10 commandments its sharia christians style?

  70. The problem with Sharia is its unequal treatment of women and non-Muslims.That discriminatory treatment is reminiscent of the “jim crow” laws of the American south and apartheid in South Africa. The unjust nature of Sharia along with the attempt to impose Sharia by some Muslims on non-Muslims even through violence is what makes Sharia different from other religious law and dangerous in free societies.We had Muslims rioting worldwide because non-Muslims living in secular countries drew cartoons of Muhammad. It’s no Muslims business what a non-Muslim living in a free country chooses to draw. You do not see riots over cartoons of Jesus, Moses or Buddha.That is the difference, that is what makes Sharia dangerous to free people.

  71. I’d like to disqualify any candidate who reveals his religious beliefs if any.

  72. [...] apparently only trusts Muslims if they stop practicing their religion. He’s also not too big on child labor laws. If a kid can’t afford lunch, they need to [...]

  73. Like the Far Right won’t seek to impose its views on others.

  74. “… and didn’t seek to impose his or her views on others.” Hmm, a president who doesn’t have any of their own perspectives or plans to promote their own agenda would certainly be a first for this country.

  75. it sure would be nice if newt would take his own advice about imposing his beliefs on others

  76. ignore him

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