Though most reports of Day 2 at CPAC will focus on the arrival of Newt Gingrich and his massive entourage, it was the event that Newt actually delayed, “Islamic Law in America: How the Obama Justice Department Is Selling Us Out,” that was much more of a talking point. The “distinguished” panel of guests were the inseparable Pam Geller and Robert Spencer of Atlas Shrugs and Jihad Watch respectively; J. Christian Adams of Pajamas Media; Robert Muise of the American Law Freedom Center (AFLC); James Lafferty of the Virginia Anti-Sharia Task Force; and Ilario Pantano, who is running for Congress in North Carolina.
In brief, Spencer and Geller are two of Americas most famous Islamophobes, Pantano is well known on the anti-immigrant circuit in North Carolina, and Muise runs the AFLC with David Yerushalmi–the man behind the plethora of anti-Sharia bills that have been introduced in numerous states. In attendance was another noted Islamophobe, Frank Gaffney, as was Susan Bibby of the anti-immigrant group ProEnglish.
Geller started the proceedings by lamenting the “mosquing of the workplace” and stating that zakat, the Muslim practice of giving a portion of your income to charity, “funds jihad.” She then impudently turned on her critics by stating that she was “as clean as a whistle.” Ilario Pantano then took to the stage, calling jihad an “institutionalized practice” and the Islamic center near Ground Zero “a desecration of an American site.” Pantano was followed by Robert Spencer, who criticized CPAC for not taking a tougher stance against Sharia and cynically greeted the reporter from Mother Jones covering the event. Muise spoke next, noting victory after victory in his legal cases against Muslims.
Following Muise was J. Christian Adams, a former Department of Justice official who attacked the current makeup of the DOJ since the election of Obama. Adams stated that “it appears to be a qualifier to do pro bono work for terrorists at Guantanamo Bay to get a DOJ job.” He went on to say that the pro bono work is “viewed as a badge of honor” by the Obama Administration. The final speaker, who was not listed in the program, was James Lafferty. Lafferty started by calling himself an “Irish Catholic Zionist”—bringing many laughs from the crowd. He went on to describe his part of Virginia as “the Wahabbi corridor,” getting a round of applause for stating that he had lobbied for an anti-Sharia bill earlier this week.
The panel finished with a brief Q&A session before dispersing—just as the many dinners and socials were starting. Anti-immigrant group ProEnglish tweeted that its executive director, white nationalist Robert Vandervoort, was dining with GOP candidate Rick Santorum. Rep. Steve King (R-IA), who stood with Vandervoort and white nationalist Peter Brimelow at a panel yesterday, was simultaneously hosting an ice-cream social.
Check back with Imagine2050 tomorrow for a recap of the final day of CPAC where the “rock star” of the GOP, anti-immigrant lawyer Kris Kobach, will be speaking.