It appeared that NBC was trying to put GOP presidential candidate Ben Carson into a tough spot when during "Meet the Press" they asked him if he would hypothetically be OK with having a Muslim as president.
According to Fox News, the question was first sparked by the flak Donald Trump got last week from the left for not defending Obama to a town hall questioner who called the president a non-American Muslim. Trump has since said he feels no obligation to correct people who call Obama a Muslim.
Yesterday and today, Carson has said that he believes Obama to be a Christian but "would not advocate that we put a Muslim in charge of this nation. I absolutely would not agree with that."
His comments have also angered the left.
When interviewed by The Hill, Carson added, “I do not believe Sharia is consistent with the Constitution of this country. Muslims feel that their religion is very much a part of your public life and what you do as a public official, and that’s inconsistent with our principles and our Constitution.”
He said that he could consider voting for a Muslim for a lower office, but when it came to the highest office in the land, the only exception he would make is if the presidential candidate “publicly rejected all the tenants of Sharia and lived a life consistent with that.”
Carson pointed out the Shia practice of "Taqiyya" that allows Muslims to lie about their faith to nonbelievers.
Faced with the Muslim question, other GOP candidates have given different or more cautious answers.
Ted Cruz told the Iowa Press, "The Constitution specifies that there shall be no religious test for public office, and I am a constitutionalist."
Marco Rubio said to ABC News, "This has nothing to do with the future of our country. These issues have been discussed ad nauseam over the last few years. It's a big waste of time. Barack Obama will not be president in a year and a half. It's time to start talking about the future of America and the people that are at home."
John Kasic told NBC, "The answer is, at the end of the day, you've got to go through the rigors, and people will look at everything. But, for me, the most important thing about being president is you have leadership skills, you know what you're doing and you can help fix this country and raise this country. Those are the qualifications that matter to me."
Do you agree with Carson or these other GOP candidates on this issue?