MURFREESBORO — Eli Clifton and Lee Fang of Think Progress broke a story on Veteran’s Day concerning Tennessee state representative Rick Womick and his fear of Muslims in the military. Asked whether or not Muslims should be forced out of the military, Womick told Fang, “Absolutely, yeah.”
On Wednesday, Think Progress’ Faiz Shakir discovered video from the “Preserving Freedom Conference,” where Womick told a room of people that, “we cannot have Muslims in our military because we cannot trust them.” Many in the crowd gave him a standing ovation.
Republican lawmakers and local officials aren’t rebuking or criticizing GOP state Rep. Rick Womick for saying Muslims shouldn’t be allowed in the U.S. military, but Democrats have strong words for his controversial remarks.
“He’s way over the top,” state Rep. Mike Turner, chairman of the Democratic Party Caucus in the Tennessee House of Representatives, said Friday. “That type of attitude is what’s wrong with America. We have too much hate and too much divisiveness.
“They are playing to people’s fears,” Turner added. “It’s counter-productive to what America stands for, and Rick should be ashamed of himself.”
Womick, R-Rockvale, made the remarks during a recent “Constitution or Shariah?” conference held at Cornerstone Church in the Madison community in northeast Nashville. His comments have made state, national and international news.