OKLAHOMA CITY – Two high profile Republicans in Oklahoma are under fire, stemming from controversial comments made online.
Several organizations met inside the state capitol Wednesday, calling for apologies and resignations.
Last week, State Representative John Bennett sent out a warning on Facebook, in which he said in part: “The Quran clearly states that non-Muslims should be killed…be wary of individuals who claim to be Muslim American, be especially wary if you’re Christian.”
The representative made the comments following the graphic murder of an American journalist by the Islamic extremist group, ISIS.
However some believe the comments were inappropriate.
“As an elected official, he has abused his position,” said Adam Soltani, Executive Director of the Oklahoma Chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations. “He’s used it to spread misinformation and lies about Islam and Muslims.”
The Chairman of Oklahoma’s Republican Party sees nothing wrong with the comments.
“Islam has basically existed for the last 14 hundred years by the sword,” said Chairman Dave Weston. “They’ve expanded predominately by the sword.”
He went on to say that all American’s, but specifically Christians should be concerned by the news in the Middle East.
But now both politicians are facing backlash, even from the Christian community they are trying to warn.
“On behalf of all those churches (Ok. Conference of Churches), I want to apologize to the Islamic community for what some tiny minority of people have done” said Reverend Dr. William Tabbernee, Director of the Conference.
Several attending Wednesday’s press conference called for Bennett and Weston to apologize, and maybe even resign. Representative Bennett tells KFOR he will do neither.
“I work for my constituents and no one else,” Bennett said. “I promised to stand up and fight for American and Oklahoma values. I will not resign, nor will I apologize.”
“Well that`s why we have elections, it`s perfectly within their rights to attempt to do that,” said Weston. “I think it`s ridiculous that he would resign.”
On Thursday, State Rep. John Bennett responded to the news conference.
“I have received hundreds of emails, voicemails, and personal thank you messages from all over the world for standing up against a cancerous problem that CAIR and other wings of the Muslim Brotherhood support,” said Bennett. “CAIR is leading the charge to discredit me and trying to put political pressure on me with their irrelevant press conference at the Capitol. I would like to remind everyone that CAIR was the organization that sued the state of Oklahoma and effectively received an injunction to stop a state ballot question approved by an overwhelming majority of Oklahomans to outlaw Sharia law in Oklahoma.”
“A lot can be deduced about a group by who they choose to associated with and CAIR Oklahoma associates with a number of questionable individuals,” Bennett said. “CAIR’s intentions and motivations are right out of the Muslim Brotherhood Memorandum on the strategy for North America as factually presented in the U.S. vs. Holy Land Foundation trial. In this memorandum CAIR and other Muslim Brotherhood organizations are directed to act and have displayed these directives. In the memorandum CAIR has followed the directives by “Co-Opting Key leadership” (like the ACLU and NAACP), “Subverting Religious Organizations” (like Oklahoma Conference of Churches), “Condemning “slander” against Islam”, “Claiming Victimization/demanding Accommodation,” “Fighting all Counterterrorism efforts” and subverting the U.S. education system. For these reasons, CAIR or any other organization linked to terrorism should not be allowed in Oklahoma.”