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. BC

    It seems Bill Maher (with his values and money) has become the voice of the Democratic Party.

    March 13, 2012 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  2. Scott

    Santorum calling college and universities the enemy of faith on MSNBC is comical. Since when did science scare GOP candidates so much? Why is knowledge suddenly so out of vogue? I want a canididate that is smart and calm. period.

    OBAMA 2012

    March 13, 2012 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  3. Dover

    I love seeing Santorum in the news.....always angry, always complaining, always bitter and never going to be elected.

    March 13, 2012 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  4. Tam

    Santorum is an embarrassment to thinking Catholics (and any normal human being). A debate betw. Maher and him would be a cruel fight between intellectural unequals.

    March 13, 2012 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  5. Tam

    intellectual

    March 13, 2012 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  6. Hikerstud

    Obama actually attended the Madrassa has Maher come out against him? Why all the harshness for a Theo or God centered or faith centered life? Is atheism so attractive? Is a self centered or self focused society such a great thing?

    March 13, 2012 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  7. allens

    i do not find home schooling to be a negative thing as long as they are learning the 3 r's. i do beleive their world view could wind up limited. looking at what santorum says, home schooling could only be wrong for those poor kids. while calling it a madrassa is a bit extreme, it is not to far from being accurate. as for comparing what bill said and what rush said, where is the logic santoum mentioned there? thiose poor kids

    March 13, 2012 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  8. GW

    gosh, thanks SLP. you've really given me something to think about here. you're opening statement:

    "Let me just give you nonreligious folks something to chew on here for a moment. This debate about birth control, which all of you insist isn't an attack on religious freedom, need to realize that it is"

    I chewed on your profoundly persuasive argument and get it now. By asking the nonreligious to chew on our belief that "birth control is not an attack on religious freedom", and instead offer us the notion that it IS an attack on religious freedom, you've made a stunning case for us to abandon our previously held beliefs. Awesome job!

    March 13, 2012 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |
  9. LeeCMH

    Here are some of Santorum Madrassa lesson plans.
    1. How to hate gays while saying "we love them."
    2. Fighting for space in public places, then fighting others to keep them from the same places.
    3. Reviewing the 15 (crash – oops) 10, yes 10 commandments.
    4. Nailing yourself on your cross in less than five minutes.
    5. The flat earth then and now.
    6. How to use government to threaten with elimination anyone who espouses an heliocentric solar system.
    7. Creative sneering and hateful gesturing at gay pride parades.
    8. Intelligent design: bring your Bibles to review Biblical Creation.
    9. How did all this get here in just 6000 years.

    March 13, 2012 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  10. gar

    Sen. Sphinctorum doesn't know his a$$ from a hole in the ground.

    March 13, 2012 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  11. Gary Street

    Mr. Santorum,
    You do know that "madrassa" means school in Arabic, so Bill Maher is calling your home a Christian 'school'. You have problems with that? Or is their something "wrong" with anything Arabic? That sounds like prejudice!

    March 13, 2012 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  12. Bob

    Madrassa is Arabic for school. So if Sanatorium is christian home schooling his kids the Maher's comment about a Madrassa is probably factually correct. I can't comment on keeping his kids from reasoning knowledge.

    March 13, 2012 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  13. BC

    To Hank – Spoken like someone who didn't go to college and has a chip on their shoulder because of it.

    March 13, 2012 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  14. allens

    one last thought, are the kids in america that far below the santorums standards that his kids must be schooled away from them? they are the kids of the very voters he is trying to attract. glad the majority sees santorum for what he is.

    March 13, 2012 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  15. Jim

    Fact check – more right wing christian republicants on welfare than left wing liberal democrats

    March 13, 2012 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  16. tony

    His children are home fooled.

    March 13, 2012 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  17. al

    Maher is not only off the charts, he is the ugliest man (?) on the planet. If he is married, she must be blind – but money hungary

    March 13, 2012 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  18. Brian

    As someone who went to Catholic school for five years, let me explain somethng:

    Santorum, if he's a Catholic (which I assume he is, from his declaration) *isn't* a Bible literalist, nor a creationist. The Catholic church abandoned crationism centuries ago, and Catholics don't take the Bible literally.

    March 13, 2012 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  19. shawky

    ...why don't people keep thier religion and their religious views to themselves?...I don't care and do not need to know what your religion or your religious views are...you have the right to practice your religion and I respect that.....just do not impose your faith on me and I won't impose mine on you...religion has no place in government...because government is for all people of all faiths, as well as, for those who do not adhere to any faith....period. ...

    March 13, 2012 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  20. Malory Archer

    How so BC? The only time I read about something Maher has said is when the reichwing takes exception to it. I don't have HBO so I'm not subject to his show, unlike the fat, drug addicted reichwing bloviator who is on the public airwaves from coast to coast and Armed Forces Radio, taking up precious precious air time that could be better served with music and real news programs.

    March 13, 2012 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  21. AG

    Comparing Limbaugh to Maher. Maher is a comedian. Santorum is a public figure running for office. Limbaugh is a monarch among the GOP. The girl he trashed is an individual law student not running for office. Nonsense to compare the two. But Santorum is a bunch of non sense.

    March 13, 2012 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  22. pat

    Maher is a really stupid person. The only thing dumber is people who listen to him. Maher doesn't know the first thing about logic and critical thinking. My dog, high on crack, could run circles around Maher's reasoning skills.

    Now, as opposed to the left who think that people whom they disagree with should be silenced, I want Maher to spew his stupidity rampantly. And I want people on the left to identify with him so they can go down with his sinking ship of stupidity.

    March 13, 2012 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  23. Mark

    Oh boy! If Rick gets to be President we can be the Iran of the new world...only Catholic bishops will be our religious council! Wow we could even have an Inquisition!! Bill Maher would be burned at the stake. Just like the good ol 16th century!

    March 13, 2012 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  24. Scared

    Sick Comeback Crazy Ricky...you've been OWNED!!

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

    Fanally, something I can agree with which I can agree with Santorum.

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