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Herman Cain Would Require Muslim Appointees To Take A Special Loyalty Oath

(cross-posted from ThinkProgress)

By Scott Keyes on Jun 8, 2011 at 6:41 pm

In March, formers Godfather’s Pizza CEO Herman Cain burst onto the presidential scene when he told ThinkProgress that he “will not” appoint Muslims in his administration.

Under intense pressure, Cain’s campaign walked back the candidate’s words, saying that he would appoint “any person for a position based on merit.” However, the next week, Cain hedged his retraction, telling the Orlando Sun Sentinel that he would only appoint a Muslim who disavowed Sharia law, but that “he’s unaware of any Muslim who’d be willing to make such a disavowal.”

On the Glenn Beck Show today, the host asked the Georgia Republican about his refusal to appoint Muslims. Cain told Beck that he would be willing to appoint a Muslim only “if they can prove to me that they’re putting the Constitution of the United States first.” Beck followed up by asking if he was calling for “some loyalty proof” for Muslims. Cain said, “Yes, to the Constitution of the United States of America.” When Beck then asked “Would you do that to a Catholic or would you do that to a Mormon?” Cain told the host, “Nope, I wouldn’t.”:

BECK: You said you would not appoint a Muslim to anybody in your administration.

CAIN: The exact language was when I was asked, “would you be comfortable with a Muslim in your cabinet?” And I said, “no, I would not be comfortable.” I didn’t say I wouldn’t appoint one because if they can prove to me that they’re putting the Constitution of the United States first then they would be a candidate just like everybody else. My entire career, I’ve hired good people, great people, regardless of their religious orientation.

BECK: So wait a minute. Are you saying that Muslims have to prove their, that there has to be some loyalty proof?

CAIN: Yes, to the Constitution of the United States of America.

BECK: Would you do that to a Catholic or would you do that to a Mormon?

CAIN: Nope, I wouldn’t. Because there is a greater dangerous part of the Muslim faith than there is in these other religions. I know that there are some Muslims who talk about, “but we are a peaceful religion.” And I’m sure that there are some peace-loving Muslims.

Watch it:

Cain’s call for a loyalty oath targeted at a specific segment of the population is a historical relic that ought to be confined to the past. Forcing a subset of Americans to prove their loyalty to the United States was as wrong during the era of McCarthyism as it is today.

Cain’s requirement that Muslim nominees take a loyalty oath while Catholics and Mormons would be exempted is not only bigoted, it’s also ironic considering that the same suspicion was once levied at Catholics. During the 1960 presidential election, anti-Catholic sentiment held that if then-Sen. John F. Kennedy were elected president, his Catholic faith would make him beholden to the Pope rather than the United States. Such views were abhorrent when directed at Catholics 50 years ago, and they are abhorrent when directed at Muslims today.

Three months ago, ThinkProgress wrote, “As the Republican presidential nomination process begins, one GOP candidate is making a name for himself as the Islamophobia candidate: Herman Cain.” Unfortunately, we are seeing just how true that prediction was.

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  • Farlowe

    Hypothetically imagine that Cain has implemented a “loyalty test”.

    Now think of the Times Square bomber (who said he lied when taking the oath of allegiance). The Time Square bomber would lie during Cain’s test and thus pass the test; the muslim guy who reported the Time Square bomber to the authorities would also pass Cain’s test. Both pass the loyalty test but one is lying!

    Someone like Tim McVeigh or Ted Bundy would not even be tested. Serial killer Ted Bundy was the office manager for Nelson Rockefeller during his political campaign. The whole concept of the test is very silly.

  • Khushboo

    ^yup. I used to be a Republican (now a democrat). It’s obvious that the right wingers are too dumb to run the country.

  • Two things;

    One, do the Republicans and other parties realize that Muslims tend to support their policies (small government, low taxes etc) and that this stupidity has made many if not all switch to other parties? Are the votes of a few ‘hicks’ worth that? Don’t they realize that the majority of the population of the US sees through this BS (one hopes)?

    Two, I was reading about these guys today, using the same rhetoric against Catholics and Irish/Germans (loyal to the Pope only, Catholic first/American second, secretly trying to take over the country, using mass immigration/birth rates to take over and so on). And guess what? They also lost elections. Learn from them: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Know-Nothing

  • H. Torrance Griffin

    The new face of Right Wingnut Bigotry. I know this back man will not support him….

  • Khushboo

    ^ so true

  • Cain and Palin would make good running mates. Sure way for Obama to win again.

  • Dan

    So Hermain Cain shares a common ground on homosexuality with the group he despises? Say it ain’t so! /sarcasm

  • HGG

    Oh, and he’s also a religious nut when it comes to gays:

    http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com/2011/06/herman-cain-i-believe-homosexuality-is-a-sin-video.php

    The guy is a complete combo of bad craziness.

  • HGG

    I congratulate Cain for sitting besides Glenn Beck and making him look like a rational human being.

    Not many can do that.

  • Kersho

    I think we should require a question to Christians and a test to their loyalty to the oath, on whether or not they could ever under any circumstance accept anyone but the elected president of the united states as the rightful executive of the land. I.e. what are they gonna do when the second coming comes about (a basic belief that any christian must believe in and accept that indeed a man would come, its just a matter of time, and they would follow him)? Would they be willing to denounce swearing loyalty to the non-america, Palestinian ‘Jesus’ in case he shows up?

  • Khushboo

    Everyone calm down! He didn’t say he wouldn’t appoint a Muslim in his cabinet. He said he would “not feel comfortable with a Muslim”. Phew. I feel so much better now! You see Cain loves peace-loving Muslims! He’s simply suspicious of them that’s all. Testing their loyalty is important because politicians are held to such high standards. I mean look at Chris Lee and Anthony Weiner. They’ve shown how much the constitution means to them! So obviously only Muslims need to be tested. Everyone else is exempt.

  • Abdullah

    @Daniel:
    I was going to bring that up. Hypocrisy at its finest.

    Its really a pity. For the past 10 years at least, it seems that it has been the GOP politicians that have been promoting such disgusting legislation as “ban sharia” and have been involved in speaking out against Park 51 and Muslims and Islam in general. They fail to realize that they’ve completely alienated American Muslims, especially when American Muslims, specifically immigrants, usually agree with typical GOP values, like lower taxes, smaller government, social conservatism. In addition to that, they’re also losing the bloc of people who can’t stand people who support hate.

    It’s simple math– stfu, because you’re alienating moderates, at least in the long run.

  • Garo

    Yeah,Most Likely!

  • Ricky

    If Muslims have to start taking loyalty oaths, then you can bet we have a hidden apartheid here in the states. America has always had problems with minorities, like the Irish, the Chinese, and Germans. When imagrants came over they were not always greeted with open arms, but sometimes the ugliness we see now.

  • Crow

    Cain must be channeling avigdor lieberman

  • Yusuf

    Come on guys they both have a Muslim friend who is peace loving they don’t hate Muslims. You don’t have to worry about anything he can’t win, 1. he can’t get the black vote. 2. He is black, which is not good for someone trying to win over a party which is still under the table racist.

  • Daniel

    I guess Herman’s copy of the Constitution is missing Article VI, paragraph 3:

    “The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the Members of the several State Legislatures, and all executive and judicial Officers, both of the United States and of the several States, shall be bound by Oath or Affirmation, to support this Constitution; but no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States.”

    Isn’t it funny that supposedly “pro-Constitutional” conservatives display the most appalling ignorance of the Constitution?

    Maybe he needs to take a course in American history from some expert like Michelle Bachmann or Sarah Palin.

  • Daniel

    Herman, Hell just called and asked that you please stop channelling George Wallace. He has some unfinished business there.

  • Anj

    American politics sucks! Why is his arse not handed to him for saying such bullshit! What next a special oath? Taqiyya they shout! Maybe we should tatoo the Muslims?
    We should mark their houses with the crescent and star?
    Maybe we should move them into a giant camp/ ghetto? So we know where they are!
    Wait a minute, where have we seen all this before?

  • marco

    As far as these loons are concerned, Muslims can never be trusted. Even if a Muslim did all of that he was asking – that muslim would sitll be accused of Taqqiyah and be accused of being a secret agent for the Muslim brotherhood etc

  • Garo

    Herman Cain’s insistence that a Muslim American must take “A Special Loyalty Oath” before he,(Cain),considers him or her for an appointment,has a great deal of affinity for the bigoted demand expressed publiclly by Israel’s current Foreign Minister,Mr.Avigdor Lieberman,who wanted the Arab Israelis to perform “A Special Loyalty Oath.”

    Since in both cases,the affinity seems to be disturbingly impressive,both Cain and Lieberman should get together and form a club and call it “International Club for Bigots.”!

    Pity the nations that allow their public figures to be so shamelessly loose in what they publiclly say,against any minority,under the pretext of “patriotism and free speech?”.

    Patriotism and free speech my ars!

  • Isa

    Blah Blah Blah, go eff yourselves, Islamophobes.

  • Syed

    And if the Muslim nominee even took such an oath, it would be nullified by cries of taqiyya. It is the Kol Nidre and the Oath More Judaica all over again.

  • mindy1

    Oh good god, who is voting for these people?

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