Republican presidential candidate Texas Senator Ted Cruz explained his statement that “We need to empower law enforcement to patrol and secure Muslim neighborhoods before they become radicalized” by pointing to a previous program in New York City and arguing “It is typical law enforcement practice, and national security practice to focus on where there is an increased incidence of radical Islamic terrorism” on Tuesday’s broadcast of CNN’s “The Lead.”
Cruz, in response to a question on what he meant by this statement said that it “does not mean targeting Muslims. It means targeting radical Islamic terrorism.” And pointed to former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s “very successful program, to engage with the Muslim community, and to prevent radicalization, and to identify radical Islamic terrorists before they carry out acts of terrorists — terrorism.”
Cruz was then asked if he was going beyond having relationships with mosques. He responded, “It’s very simple. It’s doing what law enforcement does in any circumstance. If you have a neighborhood where there is a high level of gang activity, the way to prevent it is you increase the law enforcement presence there, and you target the gang members, to get them off the streets.”
He added, “I am talking about any area where there is a higher incidence of radical Islamic terrorism.”
When asked for a specific neighborhood he would like to see the patrols in, Cruz again pointed to Bloomberg’s program in New York City.
Cruz further stated, “Anderson, of course we should be working with the Muslim community, to target radical Islamic terrorism, to prevent radicalization. That is entirely consistent with active and proactive law enforcement. When you have a neighborhood that faces an increased incidence of gang involvement, effective law enforcement works with the community — and it’s the community that pays the price. It’s the community who, the law-abiding citizens are put at risk by that increased criminal activity. With radical Islamic terrorism, it’s different from criminal activity, it is radicalization to war. They are waging jihad, and these are not isolated lone wolves, as the Obama administration insists. Rather, it is a coordinated war effort.”
When asked how he would identify a community that would need patrolling, Cruz said, “It is typical law enforcement practice, and national security practice to focus on where there is an increased incidence of radical Islamic terrorism.”
Cruz concluded by stating that the refusal to look at the social media account of the female attacker in San Bernardino, California and treating her application the same as anyone else’s as things that don’t make sense.
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