Conservative elites continue to exploit the misperception that President Obama is a Muslim. The latest offender is Fox's Sean Hannity, who suggested Monday night that President Obama was somehow responsible for the Fort Hood shooting:
This Fort Hood situation is really beginning to disturb me and should disturb everybody. And that is that there is a chance our government knew all about this guy Hasan and did nothing because nobody wanted to be called an Islamophobe. We're not talking about Islam, we're talking about radical Islam. You know, this guy going in there, god is great, etc., etc., and all the things he's saying. But everybody hat worked with him, Bob, knew ahead of time, our government apparently knew and did nothing. Now, this is a terrorist act, if in fact this was motivated in such a way. What does it say about Barack Obama and our government?
By stating that "our government apparently knew and did nothing" about "a terrorist act" and then asking "What does it say about Barack Obama and our government?," Hannity implies that Obama is sympathetic to Islamic terrorism.
Other, more fringe figures also tried to link Obama to the Fort Hood massacre:
-Leading birther Orly Taitz nonsensically invoked the shooting as a rationale for her groundless lawsuit challenging Obama's eligibility for office.
-Jerome Corsi falsely claimed the alleged Fort Hood shooter advised the Obama presidential transition in a World Net Daily article.
These are only the latest in a long series of attacks on Obama that capitalize on false perceptions about his religious beliefs (building on a related series of attacks during the campaign):
-Hannity misconstrued the statements of a member of the President's Advisory Council on Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships as a claim that Americans support Sharia law in Muslim countries.
-A New York Post op-ed and other sources previously made the unsupported claim that President Obama's nominee to serve as legal advisor to the State Department wants to institute Sharia law in this country's courts.
-Conservative pundit Frank Gaffney has claimed "there is mounting evidence that the president not only identifies with Muslims, but actually may still be one himself," suggested that Obama's apparent bow to King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia was "code" telling "our Muslim enemies that you are willing to submit to them," and said Obama is "pursuing [an agenda] that is indistinguishable in important respects from that of the Muslim Brotherhood, whose mission ladies and gentlemen... is to quote to destroy Western civilization from within by its own miserable hand."
-On the Lou Dobbs radio show, substitute host Tom Marr said "I have to believe that there is still an inner Muslim within this man that has some sense of sympathy towards the number one enemy of freedom and democracy in the world today, and that is Islamic terrorism."
-Former Washington Times editor Wes Pruden wrote that Obama's speech in Cairo was a "revelation of his 'inner Muslim'..."
-Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich alleged that there is a "weird pattern" in which Obama administration officials were "prepared to take huge risks with Americans in order to defend terrorists" and claimed that the Obama administration's "highest priority" is to "find some way to defend terrorists."
-Senator James Inhofe called Obama's Cairo speech "un-American" and said "I just don't know whose side he's on."
I've added several of these quotes to my timeline of smears against Obama's loyalty.