Sen. Mark Kirk (R-IL) is uncomfortable with singling out Muslims in House inquiries into radicalization, telling reporters that he favors a broader look at terrorism. Rep. Pete King (R-NY) is set to conduct hearings on Islamic radicalization Thursday amidst complaints from critics that that they’ll be used to stigmatize Muslim Americans.
“I mean I think it’s a problem obviously that radical Islam led to the murder of 3,000 Americans, so it was the greatest mass murder ring in the history of our country,” Kirk told reporters Tuesday. “But it would probably be pretty good for Pete to follow up with hearings on radicals of all types and then certainly including radical Islam in his purview.”
House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) defended the hearings Tuesday, telling reporters in a briefing that King had “credibility” on the issue and that “we are threatened by the spread of radical Islam.”
Benjy Sarlin is a reporter for Talking Points Memo and co-writes the campaign blog, TPM2012. He previously reported for The Daily Beast/Newsweek as their Washington Correspondent and covered local politics for the New York Sun.