Gage Skidmore is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Gage Skidmore is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Ben Carson’s thoughts about having a Muslim president were clarified in an interview Sunday on This Week with George Stephanopoulos.

2016 Republican presidential candidate and retired neurosurgeon, Ben Carson, recently came under some criticism due to his comments about why he would not advocate a Muslim as a U.S. president. Soon after, he spoke further about his comments about why he would not prefer a Muslim in the Oval Office and said he would alter his thinking if someone rewrote the Koran altogether.

While talking about the matter, Carson explained that what they should actually be talking is about Islam and its tenets and from where they originate. He says that it is clear that Islamic tenets originate from the Koran and are basically the life works and examples of Muhammad, and the writings of the scholars known as Fatwas.

Carson went on to say that he would begin to alter his thinking about the possibility of having a Muslim president, if someone could show to him an improved version of the Islamic text that opposes Shariah, and that is not against the rights of the women, rights of the gays, and something that subjugates other religions. He feels the incompatibility of the teachings in the Koran to the American Constitution may hinder a Muslim president to abide by his presidential duties. Carson made these comments on ABC News’ This Week with George Stephanopoulos to interviewing host, Martha Raddatz.

Carson’s comments vs. the American Constitution

Carson’s earlier comments about not advocating a Muslim in the Oval Office also sparked criticism and led Carson to blame the media for quoting his remarks out of context. He said that he had also mentioned that anybody from any faith and belief system, who comes to America, becomes an American citizen and is willing to embrace the American beliefs and value system and subjugate their beliefs for that of the American Constitution, is someone he has no problem with.

However, Carson’s comments seem to be contradicting the very Constitution he has been advocating allegiance to, as the Constitution clearly states that there shall not be any religious test for public office. Carson said his thoughts in no way mean that Muslim candidates should not run for the presidential office. He also backed up his comments saying that many of the immigrants trying to cross the U.S. border and enter America are hardened criminals from countries like Russia, Somalia, and Iraq.

The show’s host also asked Carson how he felt about mass surveillance of religious immigrants entering the country using legal terminology that may have painted Carson’s response in the wrong light.

Raddatz asked, "Let's imagine some of those refugees get into the United States. For authorities to track emails, cell phone calls, they usually need to have probable cause. Do you think, in some instances, religion should be enough for probable cause?"

Carson responds "I personally don't feel that way, but I would certainly be willing to listen to somebody who had evidence to the contrary. I think that's one of the problems — we get to our little corners, and we don't want to listen to anybody anymore."

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