Perhaps another beer summit is in order here. To date, just about every first move President Obama makes is bound to be the wrong one. Here he proves it yet again as he backs off his initially strong defense of the 9/11 mosque in favor of a softer more “nuanced” approach. He now says Muslims have the constitutional right to build the mega mosque, but withholds judgment on their moral responsibility NOT to do so. In other words, he adds nothing at all to the debate because nobody is denying those Muslims their constitutional right to do anything. Our objections are purely moral. And on those grounds the Healer in Chief remains absolutely silent. In other words he backpedaled from his initial clutzy response, and now votes PRESENT. But the damage is done, and you can expect to see his poll numbers continue to tank as even more bitter clingers fall away from him. It’s Obama’s mosque now. May he choke on it.
Mosque flap swirls around Obama
Obama’s comments Friday night — at an Iftar dinner at the White House marking the start of Ramadan — were widely reported as offering support for the specific mosque project in question near Ground Zero.
But on Saturday, Obama seemed to contradict himself, telling reporters at one point, “I was not commenting and I will not comment on the wisdom of making the decision to put a mosque there. I was commenting very specifically on the right people have that dates back to our founding. That’s what our country is about. And I think it’s very important as difficult as some of these issues are that we stay focused on who we are as a people and what our values are all about.”
That impromptu answer to a TV reporter covering his trip to Florida prompted a second attempt to clarify his initial statement, this time from spokesman Bill Burton.
“Just to be clear, the president is not backing off in any way from the comments he made last night,” Burton said. “It is not his role as president to pass judgment on every local project. But it is his responsibility to stand up for the Constitutional principle of religious freedom and equal treatment for all Americans. What he said last night, and reaffirmed today, is that if a church, a synagogue or a Hindu temple can be built on a site, you simply cannot deny that right to those who want to build a mosque.”
White House officials later said that Obama was simply saying that since there was no local ordinance that would prevent construction of the mosque, he believed local officials made the right decision to allow it to go forward.