Politics
WASHINGTON, DC - JUNE 15: Committee Chairman Rep. Peter King (R-NY) participates in a House Homeland Security Committee hearing on Capitol Hill June 15, 2011 in Washington, DC. The committee is hearing testimony on the threat of Muslim-American radicalization in U.S. prisons.  (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images) WASHINGTON, DC - JUNE 15: Committee Chairman Rep. Peter King (R-NY) participates in a House Homeland Security Committee hearing on Capitol Hill June 15, 2011 in Washington, DC. The committee is hearing testimony on the threat of Muslim-American radicalization in U.S. prisons. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)  

Rep. King: Islamic prison radicalization hearings are NOT racist

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Caroline May
Political Reporter

Homeland Security Committee Chairman Peter King gave a full-throated rebuttal to Democrat charges that his hearings on Muslim radicalization are racist.

During King’s Wednesday hearing on “The Threat of Muslim-American Radicalization in U.S. Prisons,” Democratic committee member Rep. Laura Richardson alleged that the inquiry could “be deemed as racist and as discriminatory.”

King did not take kindly to the charge, telling the committee that political correctness has gotten in the way of safety.

“I disagree 100 percent with the gentlelady. She is entirely wrong,” King said. “The fact is this committee was set up to combat terrorism. It was set up after September 11. As the Gentleman Mr. [Lamar] Smith [R-TX] has testified, there are already procedures in place which follow gangs when they leave prison. We have protocols in place for that. Unfortunately because of too many instances of political correctness, we do not have protocols in place to follow those who were trained in jihad in the prisons. That is why this is unique.”

The New York Republican added that it was not within his committee’s purview to focus on all the concerns plaguing prisons.

“I would say to the gentlelady, your party had control of this committee for four years. Not one hearing at all on anything involving Skinheads, on Nazis, on the Ayran Nation, on white supremacists at all. Certainly this issue emerges when we start talking about Muslim radicalization. That is the purpose of this committee. We have a Judiciary Committee to deal with other issues in the prisons.”

King concluded his address by reiterating the purpose of the Committee on Homeland Security: to protect the country from terrorism.

“The purpose of this committee is to combat Islamic terrorism because that is the terrorist threat to this country. If we find out that Neo-Nazis are allied with a foreign power and they come into this country… we will address it. The fact is we are not going to spread ourselves out and investigate everything, which means addressing nothing. We are going to focus on a target which threatens the security of this nation and that is why we are doing it, without minimizing the other threats.”

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