A leading Republican candidate for a House seat in Georgia, running on a platform of religious freedom doesn’t think Islam should be protected by the First Amendment, according to a report in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
Jody Hice, the Baptist minister and radio show host who polled the best in a crowded May primary, faces a Republican runoff next month. He narrowly won then, but whoever wins in July is all but guaranteed to win the congressional seat in the conservative district’s November general election.
In his 2012 book, he argued that Islam shouldn’t receive legal protections that other religions receive in America, according to the Constitution.
"Although Islam has a religious component, it is much more than a simple religious ideology," Hice wrote. "It is a complete geo-political structure and, as such, does not deserve First Amendment protection."
In 2011 at a tea party event, Hice made similar arguments.
"Most people think Islam is a religion, it’s not. It’s a totalitarian way of life with a religious component," he said then. "But it’s much larger. It’s a geo-political system that has governmental, financial, military, legal and religious components. And it’s a totalitarian system that encompasses every aspect of life and it should not be protected [under the law.]”
That’s just one of the many outlandish statements Hice has made, according to the paper.
The Constitution reports that Hice said in 2004 he thinks it’s just fine for women to run for office “if the woman’s within the authority of her husband,” that gay people are trying to convert young people to homosexuality, and the Muslim Brotherhood is currently working to infiltrate the U.S. in order to impose Sharia law on everyone.
Hice will face off against the runner up, Mike Collins, next month, as they seek to replace Paul Broun, who is running for Saxby Chambliss’ vacated Senate seat.