Conn. House candidate compares Islam to cult
HARTFORD, Conn.—A Republican candidate for an open seat in the U.S. House of Representatives called Islam a cult on Thursday and questioned if it is a religion of peace.
Mark Greenberg, one of four Republicans seeking nomination for the congressional seat being vacated by Rep. Chris Murphy, said in an interview on WNPR radio that Islam is a cult "in many respects."
"I don't believe that in all manner that Islam is a religion of peace. We have to be real about the fact that some folks in that religion are out to kill us," he said, referring to Americans.
Greenberg added: "I think it's more of a blueprint for living one's life, a cult in many respects. I know there are a lot of fine Muslims that really do believe that, but there is a section there, there is a terrorist portion of it that we have to be very, very careful."
Greenberg later clarified his comments, issuing a statement that he was referring to terrorists and that his intent was not to disparage "millions of peace-loving Muslims."
"To clarify my comments on WNPR this morning, I was referring to groups and individuals who have interpreted Islam in a way that allows them to commit violence in the name of their religion," he said.
Greenberg will face three other Republicans in the Aug. 14 primary: state Sen. Andrew Roraback, the endorsed GOP candidate; Justin Bernier, a U.S. Navy veteran; and Lisa Wilson-Foley, a businesswoman.
Democrats Chris Donovan, the House speaker; former state Rep. Elizabeth Esty; and political newcomer Daniel Roberti are competing for their party's nomination.
Murphy, who has held the congressional seat since 2007, is seeking the Democratic nomination for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by Sen. Joe Lieberman, who is retiring.