Santorum rails against Maher on 'Christian madrassa' comment
March 13th, 2012
05:30 PM ET
3 years ago

Santorum rails against Maher on 'Christian madrassa' comment

(CNN) - Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum hit back against Bill Maher Monday night after the liberal talk show host criticized Santorum for home-schooling his children, calling his home a "Christian madrassa."

Responding to his comments, Santorum, a devout Catholic, said on Fox News that "folks on the left" are out there "trashing anybody who stands up for Christian conservative values, anybody who dares to actually teach their children faith in their home."

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Maher made the remarks on his show Friday, saying that Santorum was sheltering his children and educating them in the home rather than in public out of fear they "could be infected by the virus of reason."

"It's no coincidence that the type of tree which God forbade Adam and Eve eating from was the tree of knowledge. Rick Santorum home-schools his children because he does not want them eating that (audio bleep) apple," Maher said. "He wants them locked up in the Christian madrassa that is the family living room, not out in public where they could be infected by the virus of reason."

The comedian has drawn criticism from many on the right for his comments against top Republicans. In response, some conservatives, including Sarah Palin, have called on a super PAC supporting President Barack Obama's re-election bid to return Maher's $1 million donation. The group, Priorities USA, has not indicated it would give back the contribution.

But Santorum on Monday, pointing to the uproar over Rush Limbaugh's comments last month against a law student who advocated for contraception coverage, said Maher's remarks were an “absolute double standard" from the left.

"All of a sudden, if you're instilling faith and teaching them about God in your home, you're a Madrassa, according to these folks, as if reason doesn't take place in these homes," Santorum said.

The candidate then argued his son, one of seven children, could take on Maher.

"Our children will out-reason him. My 12 year-old will out-reason Bill Maher when it comes to understanding how logic works, 'cause (Maher) is completely illogical," Santorum said.


Filed under: 2012 • Rick Santorum
soundoff (761 Responses)
  1. NSfromIndiana

    Santorum = the Christian equivalent to the Ayatollah.

    March 13, 2012 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  2. Ben

    There is one very important distinction between Maher and Limbaugh......Maher is a comedian and does not claim to be anything else.

    March 13, 2012 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  3. Truthwillsetyoufree

    Santorum give all TRUE Christians a bad name. Extremism is not good anywhere in anything. His world would be the most oppressive society and we built this country on getting away from such narrow mindedness. Bill Mar is smart but a little extreme as well sometimes. I would definitely say he is not the voice of the Democratic party. There are many and he's just one.

    March 13, 2012 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  4. jo an

    Let's hope it is not Rush vs Bill...!!!

    March 13, 2012 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  5. Harry

    Pagliaccio sings another verse and Willard is trying to digest those grits laying in his stomach. Has anybody seen a comedy like the GOP 2012 campaign? LOL Today even Steve Forbes and Huckabee are complaining as loudly as Barbara Bush.

    March 13, 2012 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  6. Natalie

    Bill Maher is right on target! Love that guy. Oh wait, I'm a female and the far right says women don't like him. What a crock; we do like intelligence and especially like humor.

    March 13, 2012 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  7. Raygunner

    I would pay to see that "reasonable" debate with Maher. He would eat the kid alive and would never be the same again. Talk about drama-trama!! Santorum would have to physically carry the poor screaming and crying kid off the stage. Nah, that would be child abuse.

    March 13, 2012 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  8. tony

    Where's America in the Bible?

    March 13, 2012 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  9. Expat

    How sickening, that he's now comparing what Maher says to what Limbaugh said. Two different things. And besides, it was not (only) the left that was offended by Limbaugh's remark. His remark offended and affected women across all political party lines and it wasn't the left that made him apologize. It was Limbaugh's sponsors and his fear of losing $$$. If Maher's sponsors are offended, let them pull out. Don't make it Obama's PAC responsibility. What a whiner!

    March 13, 2012 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  10. GI Joe.

    The Rick and Bubba travelling snake-oil show (like the radio team in redneck alabama). Rick and Newt.

    March 13, 2012 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  11. snowdogg

    "All of a sudden, if you're instilling faith and teaching them about God in your home, you're a Madrassa, according to these folks, as if reason doesn't take place in these homes," Santorum said."

    Rick you are a distortion artist. It wasn't "these folks" who made a comment – it was a single person – period.

    March 13, 2012 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  12. Surging from behind

    There goes Santorum thinking again. That's just dangerous. He was happy to let the tax payers pay $100k for home schooling for his kids. So much for getting the gov't out of his life.

    March 13, 2012 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  13. LiquaFoo

    How can you disagree with Maher in this one.

    "Santorum is against contraception and against college education. He literally wants you to be f__king stupid"

    – Bill Maher

    March 13, 2012 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  14. Expat

    I guess American public schools are not good enough for his children. Yet he "believes" in America. I guess if elected president, we aill have the money and opportunity to home-school our children too.

    March 13, 2012 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  15. Ivan Bial

    Rick..none are so blind as those who will not see.
    You can only hide your kids from outside ideas for so long.

    March 13, 2012 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  16. Dee1030

    Santorum, has made comments against the Gay community and basically anyone who disagrees with him, yet is offended when people make comments about him. If Santorum's comments are an example of what he's teaching his children, then he isn't teaching inclusion or acceptance of anyone who is different from them.

    March 13, 2012 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  17. hlime

    How does one go about instilling or teaching "faith"? I thought, by definition, it meant something that one embraced on one's own.

    March 13, 2012 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  18. Norman

    Mike, Maher is considered by pretty mnuch eveyrone to be brilliant, thought provoking and intelligent-even from the right. Santorum is unioversally panned as a religiosu sheep by all except a tiny minority that is quickly losing power in the GOP-imbecile!

    March 13, 2012 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  19. blf83

    My vote is with Bill Maher on this one, as Santorum is coming off as a Taliban mullah.

    March 13, 2012 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  20. December222012ORG

    What in the heck is wrong with Bill Maher anyway? Does he not realize the TV was invented to corrupt the human mind? Speaking the Truth about Senator Sandtorum is incredibly ridiculous! Come on Bill get a grip, will ya?

    With that off my chest I can now say once Senator Sandtorum is elected our next President Maher's Ratings will climb into the Stratosphere! Are you ready to become a Trillionaire Bill? One single episode of Bill Maher vs President Sandtorum will be worth more than all the Super Bowls combined. And we will have this entertainment every Friday night? Wow! Come on America VOTE SANDTORUM!!!

    March 13, 2012 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  21. Rudy NYC

    People need to see the interviews with AL/MS voters, expressing their negative views of President Obama. It puts the Maher remarks into the context of when he made them. They were all examples of home schooling.

    I find the remark a bit over the line because Maher attacks Santorum's kids. Maher should have stuck to the point, home schooling can easily turn into indoctrination.

    March 13, 2012 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  22. John

    Someone said Maher is a comedian? Don't you have to be funny? Seems like he's always screaming...

    March 13, 2012 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  23. LOL

    "Our children will out-reason him. My 12 year-old will out-reason Bill Maher when it comes to understanding how logic works, 'cause (Maher) is completely illogical," Santorum said.

    If their dad can't do it then how would they?

    March 13, 2012 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  24. bob martin

    maher is right santarium is nuts. his dead kid he took home with him,is it still at home? religeon is nothing but a crutch, i feel sorry for the poor rich guy. anit healthcare, anti contraception, anti government, he sure likes government money though.

    March 13, 2012 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  25. diridi

    Now you know Bill Mahar about the true colors of these GOP idiots.....
    PS: Rush Limbaugh=Mitt Romney. True, true, true, and true...

    March 13, 2012 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
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