I wonder if Joe Knollenberg will call for John McCain to denounce the endorsement of John Hagee.
And where was this article in the Detroit Free Press, where Knollenberg asked the Governor to denounce my statements and to swear not to appear on my community television show again.
July 18, 2007
BY TODD SPANGLER
FREE PRESS WASHINGTON STAFF
WASHINGTON – U.S. Rep. Joe Knollenberg is taking exception to a comment made by an Oakland County activist about his religion – and his staff is calling on Gov. Jennifer Granholm to do something about it.
In an article in the Oakland Press this week, Rochester Hills resident Bruce Fealk made a reference to a planned protest outside Knollenberg’s office, saying it was aimed at getting the Republican congressman to come out in favor of legislation to end the war in Iraq.
In his comments, Fealk, 53, said Knollenberg should atone for his sins – meaning his refusal to back Democratic-sponsored legislation to set timetables for removing the troops – like a good Catholic.
Both Knollenberg’s staff and the National Republican Congressional Committee slammed Fealk and MoveOn.org, a nationwide advocacy group to which Fealk belongs. In a statement today, the NRCC said, “MoveOn.org has once again made a name for themselves by attacking Joe Knollenberg’s personal beliefs and turning the Iraq war into a political, partisan game. … Religious smears have no place in political discourse.”
Meanwhile, Knollenberg’s chief of staff, Trent Wisecup, sent a letter to Granholm’s Washington office, noting that the governor had once appeared on Fealk’s cable access show in Oakland County and asking that she not do so again. It also said the governor should “inform him that injecting an elected official from Michigan’s religion into a debate on a public policy issue crosses the line.”
“His private beliefs are his private beliefs,” Wisecup said today.
Fealk, who said he was raised Jewish and now attends a non-denominational church, said today that if he had it to do over, he probably wouldn’t include the “Catholic boy part.” But he said he does believe that if Knollenberg has strong religious beliefs, he should vote to bring the troops home now.
Knollenberg has said he has doubts about President Bush’s surge policy but is willing to wait until September to see if progress is made.
“I think it’s time for the carnage to end,” said Fealk, who also noted that he is in no way an official spokesman for Moveon.org. Fealk said he is a member who sometimes acts as a local organizer.
Jennifer Lindenauer, communication director for MoveOn.org – a group that now claims some 3.4 million members and is primarily known for its anti-war stance – said she believes the Republicans are “doing what they normally do, which is make a mountain out of a molehill” by bringing attention to Fealk’s comments.
“They’re trying to distract us from the real conversation" about the war, she said.
She added, however, that bringing up someone’ s religious beliefs is “not a MoveOn tactic.”
“I agree with Fealk when he said he probably shouldn’t have brought religion into it, because the issue is ending the war in Iraq,” she said.
As for the governor, her spokeswoman Liz Boyd said that she won’t be making any promises not to appear on Fealk’s show again, though there are no immediate plans to do so.
The governor’s office also declined to comment on whether Fealk’s mention of religion was appropriate or not.
Well, John Hagee has made way more controversial statements than I did regarding Knollenberg's Catholic faith.
Here's just some of Hagee's positions on the issues.
McCain on John Hagee
"Well I think it's important to note that pastor John Hagee who has supported and endorsed my candidacy supports what I stand for and believe in. When he endorses me, it does not mean that I embrace everything that he stands for and believes. And I am very proud of the Pastor John Hagee's spiritual leadership to thousands of people and I am proud of his commitment to the independence and the freedom of the state of Israel. That does not mean that I support or endorse or agree with some of the things that Pastor John Hagee might have said or positions that he may have taken on other issues. I don't have to agree with everyone who endorses my candidacy. They are supporting my candidacy. I am not endorsing some of their positions." [McCain Media Availability, 2/29/08]John Hagee on the Issues…
Hagee on Hurricane Katrina
"All hurricanes are acts of God because God controls the heavens. I believe that New Orleans had a level of sin that was offensive to God and they were recipients of the judgment of God for that." [NPR Fresh Air, 9/18/06]
Hagee on Islamic Beliefs
Fresh Air host Terry Gross asked if Hagee believed that "all Muslims have a mandate to kill Christians and Jews," to which Hagee replied, "Well, the Quran teaches that. Yes, it teaches that very clearly." [NPR Fresh Air, 9/18/06]
Hagee on African-Americans
The San Antonio Express-News reported that Hagee was going to "meet with black religious leaders privately at an unspecified future date to discuss comments he made in his newsletter about a 'slave sale,' an East Side minister said Wednesday." The Express-News reported:
"Hagee, pastor of the 16,000-member Cornerstone Church, last week had announced a 'slave sale' to raise funds for high school seniors in his church bulletin, 'The Cluster.'
"The item was introduced with the sentence 'Slavery in America is returning to Cornerstone" and ended with "Make plans to come and go home with a slave." [San Antonio Express-News 3/7/96]
Hagee on Catholicism
"Most readers will be shocked by the clear record of history linking Adolf Hitler and the Roman Catholic Church in a conspiracy to exterminate the Jews." [Jerusalem Countdown by John Hagee]
Hagee on Women
"Do you know the difference between a woman with PMS and a snarling Doberman pinscher? The answer is lipstick. Do you know the difference between a terrorist and a woman with PMS? You can negotiate with a terrorist." [God's Profits: Faith, Fraud and the Republican Crusade for Values Voters, Sarah Posner]
"[T]he feminist movement today is throwing off authority in rebellion against God's pattern for the family." ["Bible Positions on Political Issues," John Hagee]
Hagee on LGBT Americans
"The newspaper carried the story in our local area that was not carried nationally that there was to be a homosexual parade there on the Monday that the Katrina came. And the promise of that parade was that it was going to reach a level of sexuality never demonstrated before in any of the other Gay Pride parades. So I believe that the judgment of God is a very real thing. I know that there are people who demur from that, but I believe that the Bible teaches that when you violate the law of God, that God brings punishment sometimes before the day of judgment." [NPR Fresh Air, 9/18/06]
Hagee on Iran
"The coming nuclear showdown with Iran is a certainty," Hagee wrote [in 2006] in the Pentecostal magazine Charisma. "Israel and America must confront Iran's nuclear ability and willingness to destroy Israel with nuclear weapons. For Israel to wait is to risk committing national suicide." [The Nation, 8/8/2006, http://www.thenation.com/doc/20060814/new_christian_zionism]