Newt Gingrich's ardent admiration for Franklin Delano Roosevelt owes more to the latter's unflinching wartime leadership than his welfare-state policy prescriptions. This week, though, the former Speaker is also undoubtedly in accord with FDR's aphorism, "I ask you to judge me by the enemies I have made." To his great credit, Newt has made an enemy of CAIR.
The Council on American-Islamic Relations, that is. The nation's best known cheerleader for radical Islam — or, as Fox News compliantly puts it, "the largest Muslim civil liberties group in the United States" — has issued a blistering press release that labels Gingrich "one of the nation's worst promoters of anti-Muslim bigotry." The occasion for this outburst is the imminent Republican primary in South Carolina.
Asked at a campaign appearance whether he'd ever consider endorsing a Muslim for president, Gingrich sensibly answered that he would not rule it out — "it would depend on whether [the hypothetical Muslim candidate] would commit in public to give up sharia." Naturally, the usual suspects are in full fury, with CAIR the loudest among them. They've trotted out the rote response, dutifully echoed by Fox, that sharia, Islam's legal code, is simply a set of spiritual guidelines — one that, in CAIR's portrayal, "teaches marital fidelity, generous charity, and a thirst for knowledge."