CAIRO - US Republican aspirant Newt Gingrich has conditioned his support for any Muslim presidential candidate on rejection of Islamic Shari`ah, the Wall Street Journal reported.
"It would depend entirely on whether they would commit in public to give up Shari`ah," Gingrich said Tuesday to an audience member at a town hall campaign stop.
"I am totally opposed to Shari`ah law."
Gingrich, a former House speaker who seeks to challenge President Barack Obama in this year's election, has a history of anti-Islam slurs.
In July 2010, Gingrich said that he sees Islamic Shari`ah as a mortal threat to the United States.
He also believes in the theory that advocates of Shari`ah are radical Islamists.
Shari`ah has come under scrutiny recently in the US, with right-wing campaigners and politicians questioning its role and operating system.
Lawmakers in at least 15 states have introduced proposals forbidding local judges from considering Shari`ah when rendering verdicts on issues of divorces and marital disputes.
In Islam, Shari`ah govern issues in Muslims' lives from daily prayers to fasting and from to inheritance and marital cases to financial disputes.
The Islamic rulings, however, do not apply on non-Muslims, even if in a dispute with non-Muslims.
Gingrich repeated his claim that Islamic Shari`ah was a mortal threat to the US.
"A truly modern person who happened to worship Allah would not be a threat," he said.
"A person who belonged to any kind of belief in Shari`ah, any kind of effort to impose that on the rest of us, would be a mortal threat."
Gingrich had once called for a ban on all mosques near Ground Zero "so long as there are no churches or synagogues in Saudi Arabia."
In 2010, Gingrich and his wife produced and narrated a film, "America at Risk", about what they say the threat of "radical Islam".
In the film, they discuss what they say the danger of terrorism and Shari`ah against a lurid background of terrorist bombings, bloody victims, wailing sirens and chanting Muslim crowds.
Gingrich's anti-Islam slurs are not the first by Republican presidential aspirants.
Republican aspirant Rick Santorum had described Islamic Shari`ah as "an existential threat" to America.
Former candidate Herman Cain had also said that he would not appoint a Muslim in his administration.
Cain, who withdrew from the race for the White House, later modified his position by calling for an unconstitutional "loyalty" oath for Muslim appointees.
US Muslims have been sensing a growing hostility following a hearing presented by Republican representative Peter King on what he described as radicalization of US Muslims.Recently, a Republican Missouri lawmaker described Islam as a disease like polio while another Alaska Rep. branded Muslims as occupiers' of American neighborhoods.
Reproduced with permission from OnIslam.net