Islam group ridicules Muslim ’spies’ claim – Rep. Loretta Sanchez calls it outrageous and offensive
Four Republican lawmakers have accused the most prominent Islamic advocacy group in Washington of trying to plant “spies” as interns on Capitol Hill.
The claim was quickly denounced as “racist” and “insidious” by the Council on American Islamic Relations, and the effort appears to have little support from GOP leaders.
In an unusual announcement this morning, four conservative Republicans — Reps. John Shadegg (Ariz.), Paul Broun (Ga.), Trent Franks (Ariz.) and Sue Myrick (N.C.) — formally asked the House Sergeant at Arms to launch an investigation of the Center for American-Islamic Relations. They accused CAIR, a non profit group, of trying to infiltrate Capitol Hill with interns and staffers.
Shadegg said Wednesday that CAIR is an organization that “members of Congress should be aware of and that should be investigated by the Justice Department and Internal Revenue Service.”
And the response from CAIR?
“We would love to help people find jobs on Capitol Hill,” said Ibrahim Hooper, the communications director for CAIR. “There’s a Muslim Staffer Association. Should they be investigated?”
The proclamation from the four Republicans came in advance of a book, entitled “Muslim Mafia: Inside the Secret Underworld that’s Conspiring to Islamize America,” which includes a forward by Myrick. The author of the book, Dave Gaubatz, an anti-Islam activist who wrote last year that “a vote for Hussein Obama is a vote for Sharia Law.”
The lawmakers also released a one page “strategy” document they said they obtained from CAIR. But the document basically lays out a fairly straight forward public relations and lobbying strategy and indeed, one of the goals is “placing Muslim interns in congressional offices” and registering people to vote.
Hooper ridiculed the claims.
“All they can come up with is that we are political active?” Hooper asked. “The terror threat is that Muslims are politically active?”
Democrats weren’t amused by the accusations, and Rep. Loretta Sanchez (D-Calif.) said she was “appalled” by the situation.
Office of Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez
47th District, California
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Caroline Hogan
October 14, 2009 Phone: (202) 225-2965
REP. LORETTA SANCHEZ DENOUNCES WITCH HUNT FOR STUDENT “SPIES”
Republican Reps. accuse Islamic advocacy group of “planting” Muslim interns and staffers on Capitol Hill
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez (CA-47) today issued the following statement regarding news that four Republican lawmakers have accused the Center for American-Islamic Relations of planting intern “spies” in Capitol Hill offices and committees:
“Earlier today, Politico reported that some of my Republican colleagues have formally asked the House Sergeant at Arms to investigate the Center for American-Islamic Relations for “planting” Muslim interns and staffers on the Hill. I am appalled by this request, and the insinuation that Muslim-Americans are somehow conspiring against this country through their work on Capitol Hill.
“As a strong advocate for diversity and religious freedom, I find these claims to be outrageous and offensive. I urge the rest of my colleagues to join me in denouncing this witch hunt, which is clearly intended to create fear and distrust in our Capitol Hill community.”
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