Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain’s position on appointing Muslims to his theoretical administration goes against the founding spirit of America, according Dr. Zuhdi Jasser, president of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy.
“To start out of the gates saying that he is uncomfortable with Muslims but will keep an open mind, is certainly not the philosophy or sentiment upon which our nation was based and for that matter the Constitution which Mr. Cain and I hold up first and foremost,” Jasser, who is widely respected in conservative circles for leading the fight against Islamist ideology, told The Daily Caller. “There is great wisdom in Article 6 Section 3 that states, ‘no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States.'”
On Glenn Beck’s Fox News show Wednesday, the former Godfather’s Pizza CEO was asked about previous comments he made about how he would be uncomfortable appointing a Muslim to his cabinet should he be elected president. Cain confirmed that he would indeed be uncomfortable appointing a Muslim to his administration unless they “prove to me they are putting the Constitution of the United States first.” When Beck asked Cain if we would require the same “loyalty proof” of Catholics or Mormons, Cain said “no.”
“The threat today to our country from radical Islam and its jihadists has never been greater. As a Muslim who has dedicated my life to defending the Constitution and founded an American Muslim organization to do just that against the threat of Islamism, I am very disappointed by the levels of confusion manifested in Mr. Cain’s repeated remarks,” Jasser said of Cain’s statement.
“If Mr. Cain had said he would not hire an Islamist into his administration just as our government was justifiably wary of hiring Communists during the Cold War then that would have been perfectly understandable and appropriate from a national security perspective. But all Muslims are not Islamists.”
Cain’s “‘guilty until proven innocent approach'” with regards to Muslims, according to Jasser, could be harmful in the battle against Islamist ideology.
“My concerns are that his statements demonstrate ‘a guilty until proven innocent approach’ to the war of ideas. So far our nation has been unwilling to take any sides in the conflict between liberty-minded Muslims and Islamists and now we have politicians like Mr. Cain who are implying that all Muslims could be the problem,” he said. “Such statements belie any coherent understanding of the fact that our nation’s best assets against the insidious ideological threat of Islamists are anti-Islamist American Muslims.”