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. THEANTIRICK

    Not that it matters to me, but jesus according to historians was a dark skinned liberal so ricky boy probably wouldn't like him. So much for being christ like.

    March 13, 2012 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  2. GrogInOhio

    It's disturbing that a presidential candidate allows himself to be baited in to a back and forth with a comedian. If Santorum is this thin skinned, how can he face down Putin and Ahmadinejad?

    March 13, 2012 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  3. Henry

    From Doobie Wah:

    "At last count Santorum has Alienated :

    Democrats
    Independants
    Moderate Republicans
    Blacks
    Gays
    Woman
    The Poor
    Protestants
    Latinos
    Muslims
    Snobs (The educated)

    Can we add Comedians to the list ?"

    What about dogs? Oh, and Sal, if you're going to call people names, how about learning to spell? It's M-O-R-O-N-S, not "morans." You just set yourself up for some (well-deserved) ridicule.

    March 13, 2012 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  4. MoveForward

    Being brainwashed to believe in a mythical being is not a good foundation for reason. Only if reason equals the ability to rationalize your belief system to fit the real world does it become reason, but that requires a pretty radical redefinition of reason.

    March 13, 2012 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  5. Mitch

    I will never take a clown seriously and as far as the other guy, Maher, he makes more sense than all the GOP candidates could hope to.

    March 13, 2012 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  6. Mike Mazzla

    Rick S is a crazy person and Bill Maher was 100% correct. Thats why people on the RT like Santorum are so againts education..because it actually teaches the truth..that must hurt

    March 13, 2012 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  7. Mike Mazzla

    Im an athiest but from what Ive read my guess is that Jesus would be a liberal rather than a republican... just my take on it. Tolerance, helping the poor and disadvantaged, sharing...sounds liberal to me.

    March 13, 2012 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  8. As Far As Siam

    folks on the left" are out there "trashing anybody who stands up for Christian conservative values.

    "Christian conservative values" (Oxymoron)
    Is that whay Jesus would teach ?

    Jesus : feed the poor
    heal the sick

    Conservative christian – Your on your own
    Your on your own.

    FAIL !

    March 13, 2012 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  9. phoodphite

    Someone insinuated that Sanitarium is like Bush on steroids. As bad as Bush was, that is just not fair to him nor to steroids. Sanitarium is more like someone on a rat-poisoned angry whopper.

    March 13, 2012 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  10. Kent

    Bill Maher is the new voice of reason against religious fanatics. He's good but I still wish Christopher Hitchens were around for this circus.

    March 13, 2012 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  11. haightstreet

    Home schooling is often chosen by people who want their children protected and isolated from societal ideas they do not want them to be introduced to. If that is the case, the children grow up with blinders on. Not all home schoolers have this agenda, though. To my mind, it is better to allow children to function in an open market of ideas and choose which ideas carry the weight. That way, they grow up better educated and authentic. I think Bill Maher is an example of that. He probably wasn't home schooled, I don't know, but he does appear to be authentic. At least, when listening to his comments, there is the feeling that they have been filtered through an active mind.

    March 13, 2012 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  12. RE McKay

    Santorum's religious ideals are starting to get scary. Pope Santorum ... step away from the Holy wine!

    March 13, 2012 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  13. NewYorkGeorge

    Please don't force your Christian values on me, I have my own. Love you all, hate the sin.

    March 13, 2012 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  14. Dan

    Maher has more intellect and insight in his pinkey, than psycho Rick and all his followers combined! God save us from the ultra-right!

    March 13, 2012 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  15. Pete/Ark

    This article contins no "answers" about anything unless the answer to the big question it raises counts....why doesn't a devout Catholic send his kids to the fine parochial schools his church operates /.....oh yeah, they admit hispanics,blacks, and asians......

    March 13, 2012 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  16. Log Cabin

    Republicans are engaged on their own "war on religion" if you are a Muslim. GOP = hypocrite

    March 13, 2012 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  17. Anonymous

    Amen to Theanitrick and GroginOhio

    March 13, 2012 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  18. smellarat

    Maher is the epitome of the know-it-all liberal snob. There is no one more hypocritical than this man. It's amazing the amount of sewage that passes through his mouth that gets gobbled up by the left.

    March 13, 2012 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  19. rickwh

    CHRISTIANS – AMERICA'S TALIBAN!!!! – Gotta love them, because they love to hate. And yes – RS is very concerned that his children will be infected by ideas other than their fathers. Christians, Muslims, they're all the same to me – a bunch of ignorant "I believe in fairy tales" people that want the entire world to believe in their foolishness. Bill Mahar is absolutely correct when he exposes religious zealots for what they are. If I didn't think that I would be dragged into it, I would encourage all religious people of all faiths to fight it out to the bitter end.

    March 13, 2012 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  20. Ol' Yeller

    I keep hearing the conservatives whine and cry about Maher and others, comparing there comments to limbaugh's. The difference being, is the people Maher and 'the others' from the left are bashing are those who have enetered the ring. Those who have chosen to join the frayand take up the figurative arms against each other... they bash and get bashed (and aren't supposed to cry and call foul when they get hit). What limbaugh did was purposefully and forcefully attacked someone who had not entered the battle. There's a huge difference, but onlt real men would understand this.

    March 13, 2012 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  21. commonbonds

    What's Santorum going to do? Send his 12 year old son to debate the Taliban when Daddy can't handle their comments?

    March 13, 2012 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  22. ren

    Anybody who takes home his dead baby for the kids to play with is beyond mentally sick, it's cruel to his living children as well. Christian madrassa is putting it mildly, it's something the news media hasn't commented on much, but in my opinion it's a huge problem for the Santorum clan.

    March 13, 2012 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  23. RillyKewl

    Please, republicans, please, please, please, elect Mr Sanctorum to be your nominee!
    Please?

    March 13, 2012 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  24. LaPlut

    These republican clowns will lose this November, so why does any of this matter?

    March 13, 2012 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  25. John

    "So much for being christ like."

    It's called being christian when it's convenient. Lots of folks like that, all thinking they have a magical ticket to heaven. Sorry, but few if any live the life that Jesus preached, least among them multi-millionaire politicians.

    March 13, 2012 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
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