Obama: ‘No Regrets’ Over Mosque Comments

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Despite criticism from Republicans and others, President Barack Obama said Wednesday he has “no regrets” over the comments he made about the right of Muslims to build an Islamic center near the former site of the World Trade Center in New York.

Related Story: Poll: New Yorkers Opposed To Ground Zero Mosque

Obama’s latest comment was in response to a question shouted by a reporter as he was leaving a townhall-style meeting on the economy in Ohio.

The president inserted himself into the debate over the proposed Islamic center, which includes a mosque, when he said last week Muslims “have the same right to practice their religion as everyone else in this country” and that included building the Islamic center in lower Manhattan. A day later, Obama told reporters that he wasn’t endorsing the specifics of the plan.

His position has drawn criticism from those who say that the $100 million Islamic center should not be built two blocks away from the site of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. Republicans have seized on the issue, with many trying to force Democrats to either stand with the president or buck him.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., who is locked in a tight midterm election race, was the highest profile Democrat to move away from Obama, saying through a spokesman that he thinks the mosque should be built someplace else.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., hedged on the controversy Wednesday, saying in a statement that while the freedom of religion is a constitutional right, “where a place of worship is located is a local decision.”

Pelosi also said she wants to know who is paying for the project and who is funding the fervent opposition to the plan.

She told KCBS in San Francisco she wants to know, “How is this being ginned up?”

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

  • Srk

    Our nation was founded on principles of civil liberties and freedom. However, there has to be a limit to that principle if that group/religion is a threat to all citizens. Even if all Moslems are not terrorists there enough of them for us to fear. Many Moslems are filled with hatred and don’t believe in freedom of religion. Why is that okay? A few questions: Why does Obama/liberals not question why they want to build near Ground Zero? Who is financing and supporting the mosque? How do they plan to get funding in the future? these are important questions to think about. We should not just live in denial and think everyone is perfect, except of few terrorists. That is beng idealistic but not realistic!

  • Marie

    Since obama’s approval, hamas has given the project it’s blessing & endorsement.
    Way to go.

  • JJ

    Nobody is infringing on their rights to practice their religion. They are being asked to respect the victims and their families and build their community center away from ground zero. History has proven that Muslims build Mosque’s to show the world they conquered their enemies. When Muslims start showing tolerance of the rest of the world, the world will be more tolerant of them. I’m sick of turning the other cheek to just get slapped again.

  • Patrick

    Ok, We want to build a Mega church in Mecca if you want to build a Mosque at Ground Zero…Deal?

  • mo

    they can build there mosque there ,but they should know that its guna cause alot of fights and problems in the neighborhood, as well as the mosque being constantly a target for vandalisim

  • Charles

    You can’t do anything these days without offending someone.

  • krl

    pres. is a moron. you seem to only print what you want to print only what makes this idiot look goo.

    • Wilalem

      Obama is not a moron. He is not God. He does not think he is superior. Do you think that you are better than he is by saying these things. He at least has shown some courage and intellect by saying what is right. So why do you insult him? At least he respects others.

  • krl

    he thinks he is superior. trust me, he’s not. he’s a moron.

  • krl

    of course he has no regrets, the man thinks he’s God.

  • lordpet

    The have every right to put their center wherever they want as long as it gets community board approval, which it has.

    Read the article and learn something


  • Freedom Of Religion is a Right for ALL

    So — the last 2 posters obviously think that all Muslims are terrorists. I guess that also means that you think that all Christians are abortion clinic bombers, and that all Catholic priests are child molesters.

  • Wilalem

    America is a democratic state. Its constitution clearly spells out the freedom of worship and speech. The law of the land should be separated from politics. Obama is a seasoned law scholar and is only asserting what IS right. There should not be any emotions involved in this. If Muslims cannot build their centre and mosque then sooner or later there will be others crying for churches or Jews not to practice their religion freely. Don’t forget that what is applied today to Muslims can be applied tomorrow to any religious group.

    Indeed there will be those who protest against this Muslim project because of what happened. By the same token we can protest about many things. What people do not realize is that Christianity can be as controversial as Islam. (I am not a Muslim). We must set aside ignorance and prejudices. Christians have killed and continue to kill in God’s name. These people are not real Christians. Nor are those Muslims who kill in Gods name good Muslims.

    Obama is right. All the laws of the land will prove him right. Those who do not want the Centre built are acting like dictators. But if that same principle is applied to them they will make a lot of noise. Now is the time for people to shout that Obama is a Muslim. No he is just a wise man who follows and respects the constitution and the rights of all. He is not playing politics. Others are!!

    • kathy

      OMG..you are so naive and misinformed….

      • Wilalem

        No Kathy, I am not naive and misinformed. In fact I think that you are quick to criticize me for having an open mind towards this topic. If we base our discussion on what the law says, then I am not naive but wise. If we go by our emotions then you are being hasty and naive. Let us say everybody has a right to her/his point of view BUT we should stay within the edicts of the law. Good day to you.

  • zzzzzzzzzzz

    i agree that you can build a place of worship and pray where ever you want, but the place where 3000 people where murder alive from muslim no you should build it elsewhere

    • lordpet

      lots of muslims died there too that day. There are 2 mosques in the neighborhood as it is. Should they be torn down then? What about the two strip joints that are near the “hallowed” Ground Zero? The community is fine with it, and that’s the end of it. If you don’t like it, don’t use their swimming pool. Pretty simple.

      • Claude Funston

        Correct me if I’m wrong, but I don’t think strippers attacked the WTC.

  • Bill Doyle

    If Only the Muslim counties in the World would allow non-Muslims that same Right which most do NOT.

    • lordpet

      Then they would be democracies and not theocracies. Would you rather we were a theocracy then? your argument is specious at best

    • Wilalem

      You are right. Many Muslim countries are intolerant to other religions. This is largely due to ignorance, fear of having their powers reduced over their people, who are not literate. It is a long list of reasons linked to the Muslim leaders and these countries wanting to maintain dominance over their people.

      The US can however NOT get down to that level of suppression of religions rights. It will lose credibility and respect. It has to stay on the high ground and not behave like some of these dictatorships.

      Emotions are at play here, but it has to be controlled.

  • http://purestlove.wordpress.com/ M Shodiq Mustika

    Yes, Obama is right.
    We have the same right to practice our religion as everyone else.

    • Fire in a Crowded Theater

      But no right to put your mosque by the twin towers your “faithful” destroyed.

      • mark bento

        This is matter of what’s LEGAL, not what’s ETHICAL. The Constitution protects RIGHTS, not good taste.

      • L Reynolds

        So — clearly you assume that all Muslims are terrorists. By that same logic, do you also assume that all Christians are abortion clinic bombers, or that all Catholic priests are child molesters?

      • You're an idiot

        You are an idiot and need to learn the definition of “right.”

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