Yesterday, the House of Representatives passed a resolution “recognizing the commencement of Ramadan” with 376 votes. The resolution sought to “demonstrate solidarity with and support for members of the community of Islam in the United States” during this Muslim month of fasting.
But some lawmakers couldn’t muster the courage to vote for the uncontroversial legislation. Forty-one Republicans and one Democrat chose to vote “present,” including Rep. Tom Tancredo (R-CO).
After the vote, Tancredo issued a press release decrying the Ramadan resolution:
“This resolution is an example of the degree to which political correctness has captured the political and media elite in this country. I am not opposed to commending any religion for their faith. The problem is that any attempt to do so for Jews or Christians is immediately condemned as ‘breaching’ the non-existent line between Church and State by the same elite,” Tancredo says in his statement.
Tancredo voted “present” and not “no” because “a no vote could be construed as not commending religion in general, which Tom is for,” said Tancredo spokesman T.Q. Houlton. Instead, Tancredo seems to only selectively hate religion. He had no problem voting for a House resolution celebrating Christmas.
In 2005, Tancredo suggested that the United States consider bombing Mecca as a “deterrent” against terrorist strikes on the U.S. homeland. He received intense criticism from conservatives for these remarks.
Also voting “present”? Rep. Virgil Goode (R-VA), who earlier this year came under fire after expressing his fear that “we will have many more Muslims in the United States.”
The lessons Tancredo and Goode appear to have learned is that they need to do a better job masking their anti-Muslim bias.