Muslims say their Islamic beliefs are peaceful, and Mosque leaders welcome strangers to their Islamic events, so they have no reason to object if police officials visit and listen to Islamic sermons and conversations, Gov. Mike Huckabee declared at the Dec. 15 undercard debate.
“It does not violate their [Islamic believers’] First Amendment rights to have someone go and listen to the sermons,” he told the hosts. “You can go to any church in America, it’s a public place, you can listen, and — you know, if you go to my church, you’ll probably get a real blessing. Heck, it’ll be a wonderful experience,” Huckabee said at the CNN debate.
So, if it’s a public place, and people are invited to come, how does it violate anybody’s First Amendment rights that somebody shows up because they might want to just listen in and see is there something that is a little nefarious? And, if there is, then you take the second step of getting a search warrant, you do whatever you have to do. That’s all protected under the constitution.
So, Huge, I hear people act like there’s something that is terrible about going and sitting in and listening to the sermons of a mosque. If Islam is as wonderful, and peaceful as its adherents say, shouldn’t they be begging us to all come in and listen to these peaceful sermons? Shouldn’t they be begging us all to come, and listen, and bring the FBI so we’d all want to convert to Islam?
When people say we can’t go into the mosque, we can’t listen. That’s utter nonsense. Of course we can. And, if we can’t, if there’s something so secretive going on in there that somebody isn’t allowed to go and hear it, maybe we do need for sure to send somebody in there and gather the intelligence. And, that’s all to the world I’m saying, I think it stands to be true.
Huckabee’s pitch was echoed by other candidates at the undercard debate. Former Sen. Rick Santorum declared:
The fact of the matter is, Islam is different. I know this is going to come as a shock to a lot of people, and I mean the sincerely. Islam is not just a religion. It is also a political governing structure. The fact of the matter is, Islam is a religion, but it is also Sharia law, it is also a civil government, it is also a form of government. And, so, the idea that that is protected [from observation] under the First Amendment is wrong.
And, in fact, that political structure is what is the big problem. The imposition of Sharia law adherence to fundamental Islam as it was practiced in the Seventh Century…
Huckabee also argued that Americans’ protection is a higher priority than preserving the reputation of Islam. “Our job is not to protect the reputation of Islam. It is to protect Americans first and foremost… We have an enemy this Administration refuses to acknowledge and refuses to go fight. ”
The issue was driven by Donald Trump’s call for a temporary ban on the immigration of Islamic believers.