The Daily Caller has learned that Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain will host a roundtable discussion with American Muslim leaders within the next seven days.
Cain campaign spokeswoman Ellen Carmichael said he reached out to a group of Muslim leaders for a discussion about religion and politics. Several leaders agreed, she said, though the campaign is not ready to specify which of them are on board. She also said the campaign was not ready to provide the exact date of the meeting or where it would take place.
The announcement comes in the wake of several statements by Cain in recent months that seemed to paint the former Godfather’s Pizza CEO as hostile to Muslims.
In March, the liberal activist group ThinkProgress asked Cain whether he would be comfortable appointing a Muslim to his cabinet or as a federal judge. Cain said “I will not” because he feared the theoretical appointee would somehow spread Sharia, or Islamic, law in the United States.
Given an opportunity to clarify his comments on then-Fox News host Glenn Beck’s television show, Cain said that while he would be uncomfortable appointing a Muslim to his cabinet, he would consider it provided the Muslim in question swore a loyalty oath to the U.S. Constitution. Asked by Beck whether he would require the same oath of a Catholic or a Mormon, for instance, Cain said, “Nope. I wouldn’t.”
Cain also spoke out earlier this month against the planned construction of a mosque in Murfreesboro, Tenn. (RELATED: Doctor: Herman Cain is still cancer-free)
Fighting back against allegations that he is bigoted toward Muslims, Cain said on the July 17 edition of “Fox News Sunday” that he had no problem with peaceful Muslims.
“I know that that there’s a peaceful group of Muslims in this country. God bless them and they are free to worship,” he said. “I have never discriminated against anybody because of their religion, their sex, or origin, or anything like that. I’m simply saying I owe it to the American people to be cautious because terrorists are trying to kill us.”