Posted on July 19, 2011 in Countdown

Herman Cain's In the Zone

Over the course of the campaign, we’ve learned—from Cain himself—that Cain wouldn’t appoint a Muslim to his cabinet. Or that he mightif the Muslim took a loyalty oath and promised not to try to kill us. And now we’re learning that Islam is not a religion. Or maybe it is. In fact, maybe it’s all that and more!  “Islam is both religion and (a) set of laws, Shariah law. That’s the difference between any one of our other traditional religions where it’s just about religious purposes,” said Cain on Fox News Sunday.

His comments were intended to clarify why he is justified in not supporting the construction of a mosque in Murfreesboro, TN. It’s not religious discrimination—because Islam isn’t a religion! No siree. Islam, established roughly 1,150 years before the United States, is nothing more than an insidious plot to subvert our Constitution. And because it’s not a religion, Islam is not entitled to the legal protections that prevent zoning laws from discriminating against siting a religious institution.

Cain, who is hands-down winning the anti-Muslim vote, is firm on the issue of the Murfreesboro mosque. He believes the people should decide. “The people in the community know best. And I happen to side with the people in the community.”

So would this be a good time to show him the poll that says that 66 percent of Tennesseans support or don’t oppose construction of a mosque in Murfreesboro?

Apparently, that depends on whether you want him elected to office. Because, as Stephan Salisbury points out, the vast majority of vocal Islamophobes lose their elections—including Ron Ramsey and Lou Ann Zelenik, who both ran for office in Tennessee, and Lynne Torgerson, who was trounced by Keith Ellison (D-MN) in 2010, but has already declared she’ll run against him in 2012.

With Cain polling at 1%, and Torgerson’s 2010 showing at 3%, it looks like the anti-Islam campaign strategy really is working… for us, anyway.

And You Thought Reverend Wright Was a Political Liability

Last week, we brought you the slightly-funny/slightly-racist/slightly-scary pledge that Michele Bachmann signed. This week, we bring you comments on Catholicism from the church Bachmann was a member of for a decade: "We identify the anti-Christ as the papacy. This is an historical judgment based on Scripture." Ok, so she’s probably not going to be so popular with the Muslims and Catholics, but her outreach efforts to other communities are still solid, right?

Well, not exactly. In what looked like an attempt to reach out to the conservative Jewish community, Bachmann said President Obama had “a lot of choot-spa.” Maybe they just don’t have a lot of “chutzpah” in Minnesota. 

Move over Hollywood!

A gripping indie political drama has opened to sell-out crowds! Well, to one sell-out crowd. In Grapevine, Texas. Now playing in ten theatres around the nation, “The Undefeated” is about… uh…defeated vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin’s“rise from obscurity” to her half-term as governor of Alaska.

Just check out these headlines: Palin Film Opens Strong, Theaters Packed (Fox Nation); Palin film starts soft, but distributor pleased (Los Angeles Times); Sarah Palin documentary has modest opening (CBS News); Sarah Palin documentary “The Undefeated” opens to poor reviews (The Guardian). Well, The Guardian’s British, so, you know…

Down to the Wire

Like another Hollywood genre, where the hero has to nervously decide which wire to cut to disable the ticking time bomb, time is running out on the debt negotiations. Unfortunately, Bruce Willis isn’t available to diffuse the situation.

According to CNN, the Administration and Congress are focusing on a fall-back plan designed by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, raising the debt ceiling by $2.5 trillion. Here’s the tricky part—it will require 3 congressional votes for ceiling hikes ($700 billion, $900 billion, and $900 billion) prior to the 2012 elections. Everyone expects Congress to disapprove the hikes, leaving it to Obama to veto their disapproval. So members of Congress can go on record against the ceiling hikes, while fully aware that they’ll take place anyway. Now, pull out Websters and look up “posturing.”

Speaking of Money, and In the Category of “Didn’t We Know This All Along…”

A recent CNN investigation determined that self-professed “terrorism expert” Walid Shoebat is a fraud. Shoebat claimed to be a former terrorist who had seen the error of his ways, but CNN’s investigation couldn’t turn up any proof that he was ever connected to a terrorist organization or attack. The investigation did find that Shoebat and his partner bring in more than $560,000 each year through a pyramid of foundations and websites. How much comes from the Department of Homeland Security, which has hosted Shoebat at conferences and seminars, is up for grabs.  But it appears that Shoebat’s federal ride may be ending. “We have not and will not tolerate training programs—or any DHS-supported program—that rely on racial or ethnic profiling," the agency said in a written statement.  With Shoebat’s statements like “Terrorism and Islam are inseparable,” and “"All Islamic organizations in America should be the No. 1 enemy,” we’re assuming they’re talking about him. 

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