Herman Cain: Muslims must show loyalty to work for me
June 10th, 2011
09:36 PM ET
10 years ago

Herman Cain: Muslims must show loyalty to work for me

(CNN) - GOP presidential candidate Herman Cain stood firm Friday on his promise to make Muslims prove loyalty to the U.S. Constitution before appointing them to his administration - a test, he has said, that would not apply to people of other faiths.

The former CEO of Godfather's Pizza denied that the proposed test is a form of discrimination when pressed Friday by CNN's John King.

"That's not discrimination. It's called trying to protect the American people," Cain said. "This nation is under attack constantly by people who want to kill all of us, so I'm going to take extra precaution."

In March, Cain made headlines when he told a Think Progress blogger that he would feel uncomfortable appointing a Muslim as a member of his cabinet or as a federal judge. And while speaking on Fox News on Wednesday, he said there was a "greater dangerous part of the Muslim faith" than other religions.

Cain told King on Friday that he would be comfortable with a Muslim serving in office only if he could gauge the person's sense of loyalty through a one-on-one conversation.

"I never said I would discriminate against Muslims or any other religion for that matter, but I am going to take extra precautions if a Muslim person who is competent wants to work in my administration," he said.

Cain has grown in popularity over recent months. The latest poll released by Quinnipiac University on June 8 puts him in third place in the 2012 GOP field, with 10%. He falls behind former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, who placed first, and former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, who came in second.

– On Monday, June 13, CNN will host the first New Hampshire Republican Presidential Debate, live from Manchester, NH at 8 p.m. ET. Follow all the issues and campaign news leading up to the debate on CNNPolitics.com and @cnnpolitics on Twitter.

Filed under: 2012 • Herman Cain • TV-John King U.S.A.
soundoff (87 Responses)
  1. T'sah from Virginia

    ["That's not discrimination. It's called trying to protect the American people," Cain said. "This nation is under attack constantly by people who want to kill all of us, so I'm going to take extra precaution." ]

    Does this man think Muslims want to KILL HIM for his pizza recipe??????? I wonder how many African Americans work for Cain???

    This is so sickening!!! Color or Race should not even be an issue when hiring! If you do background checks – take that for what it is worth and PRAY!!!!!

    June 10, 2011 11:42 pm at 11:42 pm |
  2. Anonymous

    why would any rational person run around make fool of him self?
    " In my adminstration .....i do that or do this" the good news is we are allowed to live in fantacy land.

    June 10, 2011 11:43 pm at 11:43 pm |
  3. jackson

    Even fools are allowed to live in fantacy land. "In my adminstration ......i do that and this "

    June 10, 2011 11:46 pm at 11:46 pm |
  4. GOP = Greed Over People

    I wonder if Cain would see the blatant bigotry in this statement, if a white guy said "blacks must show loyalty to work for me"

    I guess Cain supports racist Rand's contention that letting black folks eat at the counter was a bad business decision as well?

    June 10, 2011 11:50 pm at 11:50 pm |
  5. Well you have proved you know . . .

    nothing about democracy, humanity and America. The broad brush you tar Muslims with makes you not eligible to lead our country. Black racism is alive and well, albeit in a right wing form.

    June 10, 2011 11:56 pm at 11:56 pm |
  6. Chloe in Chatsworth, CA

    What about Jews? Just because they're US citizens doesn't mean their first loyalty isn't to Israel. Hopefully President Cain will screen Jewish nominees with a one of his eagle-eyed one-on-one conversations before appointing one of "them" as a member of his cabinet or as a Federal judge.

    June 11, 2011 12:01 am at 12:01 am |
  7. DJ in TX

    And just how would a one on one conversation 'prove" loyalty to the U.S. This is the most bizarre comment I've ever heard. And please tell me how this would help relations with the Muslim community? In my opinion, this would make them angry and possibly "push' them to the ones who hate America.

    The ones I don't trust are the ones walking around with guns stuck in their pants. I don't care what religion you are. i served in the 1st Gulf War along with Muslims. I knew some on the front lines who were fighting against other Muslims. I would think they were loyal to the U.S. One even told me although it was tough to fight another Muslim, at the time, he siad Sadaam had broken the law, (US law) and had to go. Herman Cain would never get my vote. Running a business is NOTHING like runing a government. He has to decide whether to send young people to war (running a business doesn't prepare you for that). He would have to potentially go to people's homes and tell them their son our daughter has died in war(running a business doesn't prepare you for that), He has to make decisions that affect people's very lives and livelyhoods. (running Godfather's pizza doesn't prepare you for that), At least everyone else (outside of Trump) has some federal government experience. This guy is a joke.

    June 11, 2011 12:02 am at 12:02 am |
  8. JD in Moraga, CA

    Taking bigoted neo-Con-ism to new heights. If someone said they would do the same thing because someone happened to be African-American, Asian-American, or Native American, they would be hung out to dry.

    June 11, 2011 12:10 am at 12:10 am |
  9. Republicans Are The American Taliban

    Cain has grown in popularity over recent months. The latest poll released by Quinnipiac University on June 8 puts him in third place in the 2012 GOP field, with 10%.

    Where in the world is Quinnipiac University? And why would America care about a lunch time cafeteria poll CNN??

    June 11, 2011 12:12 am at 12:12 am |
  10. Reggie from LA

    What are you talking about Mr Cain? Yeah I get it, but uhm, what are you talking about, "Work for me...?" What about the nation? Ooops. Stupid me. Your run for President isn't about the nation (which includes a lot of citizens whose religion is Muslim), it's about winning. You, Romney, Gingrich (Sarah's not running. She's getting super rich and lovin' it) want to win for yourselves. Vote Tpeople pay the rich. By the way, where's them jobs rich people? Vote Repup, damn the poor.

    June 11, 2011 12:35 am at 12:35 am |
  11. Christine

    Well he has my vote.

    June 11, 2011 12:36 am at 12:36 am |
  12. Jason M

    Guess what Republicans... when you say something like "I am going to require qualifications and pay attention to this group of people" or "We support freedom and equality for all, except not for this other group of people"... THAT IS THE DEFINITION OF DISCRIMINATION

    June 11, 2011 12:42 am at 12:42 am |
  13. Alex

    Really? Many Jewish people are more loyal to Israel than the United States. That's not even me being bigoted either. That was told to me by a Jewish person. Follow whatever religion you want just make sure in carrying out your duties as a public servant your first loyalty is to the United States, the American people, and our Constitution. If I were President I'd simply ask any person if their religious beliefs kept them from carrying out their duties or upholding the Constitution, if they said yes, then they'd be out.

    June 11, 2011 12:45 am at 12:45 am |
  14. Rasputin

    The more I read about this guy the more I want to know. He just might be the real deal!

    June 11, 2011 12:48 am at 12:48 am |
  15. Stuart

    You gotta be kidding me. All these Republicans are clowns.

    June 11, 2011 12:51 am at 12:51 am |
  16. Bill

    It would be funny except for the cynical way this man uses ethnic slander to appeal to rednecks.

    June 11, 2011 01:04 am at 1:04 am |

    I agree with Cain wholeheartedly. After all in the Quran it states it is their duty to destroy all infidels. I would want to know where these people's faith and patriotism lies. No way is this a violation of their rights. The same goes for illegals. As far as I'm concerned they have no rights. They have broke the law and should be arrested. If Obama tries to give amnesty he should be inmpeached.

    June 11, 2011 01:11 am at 1:11 am |
  18. TM

    Mr. Cain, you are, by your own words, a bigot and a racist. You have no place in a civilized society, and deserve no voice in guiding this nation. You are a disgrace to the memory of those who have fought for the equality of all people. Dr King would judge you on the content of your character and find you worthless.

    June 11, 2011 01:31 am at 1:31 am |
  19. roscoe

    Maybe Muslims should be considered 1/4 human, right Herman?

    June 11, 2011 01:47 am at 1:47 am |
  20. Sister Pamela Pranke OPA

    If it walks like a duck, sounds like a duck and looks like a duck, it probably is a duck. If it walks like discrimination, sounds like discrimination and looks like discrimination, it is probably discrimination and you are discriminating.

    June 11, 2011 01:52 am at 1:52 am |
  21. thomas

    Extra cheese and hold the anchovies !

    I'm sure he can make a profitable pizza , yet he is clueless when it comes to governing a country !

    June 11, 2011 01:58 am at 1:58 am |
  22. Susie

    I'm not going to discriminate, I'm just going to treat them differently from everyone else.... MLK must be rolling over in his grave!

    Meanwhile, perhaps Cain should double check his facts. White supremacist groups who distort Christianity to serve their own purposes FAR outnumber the number of muslims on the domestic terror watch list.

    June 11, 2011 01:58 am at 1:58 am |
  23. Muslim

    Who told u we want to work for a pizza clown, sheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee

    June 11, 2011 02:05 am at 2:05 am |
  24. Christopher

    Once the oppressed have power they become the oppressors. This doofus is simply a bigot. So sad.

    June 11, 2011 02:31 am at 2:31 am |
  25. American Muslim

    No surprise here, its the tea party that supports this guy, its their way or the highway.As an independent who leans to conservative ideals on fascial issues. Herma Cain is one GOP I will not be V-OTING for sure.

    June 11, 2011 02:50 am at 2:50 am |
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