Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson claimed on Sept. 22 that his opposition to a Muslim president "has nothing to do with being a Muslim" (video below).
Carson was asked by NBC News "Meet The Press" host Chuck Todd on Sept. 19 if a president's faith should matter to voters.
"If it fits within the realm of America and [is] consistent with the Constitution, I have no problem," Carson replied.
Todd asked Carson if he believed that Islam was "consistent with the Constitution."
"No, I don't," Carson replied. "I do not. I would not advocate that we put a Muslim in charge of this nation. I absolutely would not agree with that."
CNN reporter Joe Johns asked Carson on Sept. 22 at a press conference about his “fundamentally discriminatory” beliefs about Muslims and the presidency, reports RawStory.
"It has nothing to do with being a Muslim. That was the question that was specifically asked. If the question had been asked about a Christian, and they had said, 'You know, would you support a Christian who believes in establishing a theocracy?' I would have said 'no.' And some people would have said, 'He's against Christians.'"
Carson was not asked about a Muslim "who believes in establishing a theocracy" by Todd. In reality, Carson was asked about Islam, and said he would oppose a Muslim as president.
Carson went on to tell CNN:
"You have to be able to look at the context in which I’m saying it ... The context is, as I said before that question was asked, anybody of any religious faith whatsoever, if they embrace American values and they place our Constitution at the top level above their religious beliefs, I have no problem with them."