Rep. Peter King: Critics Who Wanted Hearing Broadened After Norway Attacks Are "Vacuous Ideologues"

July 27, 2011 10:45 am ET

Rep. Peter King (R-NY) came under criticism this week for refusing to broaden a series of hearings on Muslim radicalization in the wake of Friday's terror attack in Norway. During today's hearing, King responded, lashing out at the "politically correct media" for "shamelessly attempting to exploit the horrific tragedy in Norway this past Friday to cause me to refocus these hearings away from Muslim-American radicalization." He went on to say that he "will not back down," in part because he "owe[s] it to all the friends, neighbors, and constituents I lost on September 11th."

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KING: Finally, I note that certain elements of the politically correct media — most egregiously the vacuous ideologues at the New York Times — are shamelessly attempting to exploit the horrific tragedy in Norwaythis past Friday to cause me to refocus these hearings away from Muslim-American radicalization.

If they had even a semblance of intellectual honesty the Times and the others would know and admit that there is no equivalency in the threat to our homeland from a deranged gunman and the international terror apparatus of al Qaeda and its affiliates such as al-Shabaab who are recruiting people in this country and have murdered thousands of Americans in their jihad attacks.

Let me make this clear to the New York Times and their acolytes in the politically correct, moral equivalency media — I will not back down from holding these hearings.  I will continue to hold these hearings so long as I am the Chairman of this committee.

Apart from all the strategic and moral reasons why these hearings are vital to our security, they are also liberating and empowering to the many Muslim Americans who have been intimidated by leaders in their own communities and are now willing and able to come forward.

I also owe it to all the friends, neighbors, and constituents I lost on September 11th.  I will not back down.

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