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Bitter talk between Mich. gov. hopefuls tackles sharia law, terrorism
Kathleen Gray, Detroit Free Press Lansing Bureau
EAST LANSING — What started out as a relatively civil and calm debate of the seven Republican and Democratic candidates for governor Thursday ended with a bitter exchange on sharia law and connections to terrorism.
Sen. Patrick Colbeck, a Canton Republican, repeated his unfounded claim that Democrat Abdul El-Sayed has connections to the Muslim Brotherhood, who he claims are focused on a “civilization jihad,” of the United States.
“I have very deep concerns,” said Colbeck. “Abdul El-Sayed, has a handful of affiliations with Muslim Brotherhood,” including his membership in the University of Michigan Muslim Student Association.
But El-Sayed said the accusations are the racist conspiracy theories espoused by white supremacists.
“I do solemenly swear to uphold the constitution of the United States and this state. That is this oath that any one of us will swear to, including the right to pray as I choose to pray,” El-Sayed said, adding that he was especially upset that the other Republicans in the race weren’t condemning the “Islamaphobia” accusations. “You may not hate Muslims, but Muslims hate you.”