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Birther-Linked Super PAC Runs Islamaphobic Ad Against Michigan Candidate

By Hayes Brown and Josh Israel  

"Birther-Linked Super PAC Runs Islamaphobic Ad Against Michigan Candidate"

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House candidate Dr. Syed Taj (D-MI)

House candidate Dr. Syed Taj (D-MI)

In a stunning appeal to Islamaphobia, a group linked to former Swiftboater and birther conspiracy theorist Jerome Corsi has launched a smear attack ad on a Muslim-American Congressional candidate. The spot warns that Dr. Syed Taj, the Democratic nominee in Michigan’s 11th Congressional district, wants to “advance Muslim power in America.”

Freedom’s Defense Fund, a right-wing PAC that has spent at least $150,000 on ads in support of Missouri Senate candidate Rep. Todd Akin (R) despite his comments that victims of “legitimate rape” are unlikely to become pregnant, reported spending at least $30,000 on ads against Taj and for his opponent Republican Kerry Bentivolio, a Tea Party activist and Santa Clause impersonator.

So far in the 2012 election cycle, the PAC has spent over $3 million to promote its far-right beliefs. Corsi, who has been tied to the Fund, has promoted a multitude of Islamophobic conspiracy theories, including that President Obama wears an Islamic inscription on the interior of his wedding ring. Despite his fringe beliefs, Corsi was recently permitted to ride on the Romney campaign plane with the press corps.

This spot, titled “What do we really know about Syed Taj?” warns:

ANNOUNCER: We know Syed Taj wants to advance Muslim power in America. Syed Taj: too extreme for Michigan. Too extreme for America.

The text on the screen shows a quote from a Muslim Observer article, in which Taj observed that “right now there are two elected Muslims in congress, with a third we can form a caucus, we will have more power.”

Watch the ad:

On its website, Freedom’s Defense Fund claims it fights for “the principles of limited government, as the Founders understood them.” Apparently they don’t believe freedom of religion is of those principles.

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