GOP Candidate Attacks “Ground Zero Mosque”


Less than a month before the tenth anniversary of the September 11th terrorist attacks, a new attack ad condemning the “ground zero mosque” aired in New York.  Republican Bob Turner, who is running in the special election for Anthony Weiner’s congressional seat, lambasts his opponent, Democratic Assemblyman David Weprin, for supporting the Park51/Cordoba House project, which was the talk of last summer’s gubernatorial campaign.

In the video, which has been removed from Youtube, Turner tries to resurrect last summer’s debate.  Here’s the voiceover (via the NY Daily News):

“It’s been ten short years. Everyone remembers. Some, though, want to commemorate the tragedy by building a mosque on Ground Zero. President Obama thinks that’s a good idea. And so does Congressional candidate David Weprin. [Weprin video: "I support the right of the mosque to build."] Bob Turner says no. He knows Obama and Weprin are wrong. September 13th, send a message. Bob Turner for Congress.”

Several hours later, the Weprin campaign responded, saying, “As we approach the tenth anniversary of 9/11, it’s shameful that Bob Turner is trying to use the tragedy for his own political gain. I knew people who lost their lives that day and Bob Turner dishonors their memory by politicizing the attacks on New York.”

The puzzling part of the ad is that although Weprin leads by a narrow margin, it seems as though the controversy had officially been labeled a non-issue.  The mosque won’t be built on Ground Zero, and the developers admit that the project is far from completion. Why would Turner think that starting to beat a dead horse would improve his chances at winning Weiner’s seat, when atheists’ protests over plans to put up a cross at the Ground Zero memorial seem to be sparking more discussion these days?

Writing for Salon, Justin Elliott speculates that the ad might be a bid to win over Jewish voters, who comprise 29% of the Brooklyn/Queens-based 9th district.  According to Elliott, one of Turner’s spokesmen “portrayed Weprin’s support for the right to build the mosque as part and parcel of a ‘worldview’ that is…insufficiently supportive of Israel.”

Whether this ploy will work is another question.  In the lead-up to the 9/11 anniversary, though, you can bet that anti-Muslim rhetoric will, once again, rear its ugly head.  In all likelihood, this is just the beginning.

Related Stories:

It’s Back! Outrage Over Park51 Reignited

Quran Burning Off – Park51 Controversy Back On

Park51 and the Manufactured Outrage of the Right

Photo from david shankbone via flickr.


bob m.
bob m6 years ago

@ Scott...You got that right fella.

Martha Eberle
Martha Eberle6 years ago

I feel a sickening in my stomach when I hear such political moralizing. I dread the upcoming "anniversary" -- as usual, the corporate media will use it to raise ratings with soppy recaps and tributes. It should be a moment of silence only.

Scott Habowski
Scott H6 years ago

@ Fred C. and Zuzana D. - I really hope that no one prayed to the Christian god at the memorial for the victims of the Norwegian gunmen. That would simply be "triumphalist" since the shooter was a Christian, wouldn't it? We also know, given what we've seen of this shooter and folks like, say, the Wesboro Baptist Church, that 90% of churches teach hate, just as the mosques do.

Oh, no, wait a minute. That's absolutely absurd, isn't it?

William Y.
William Y6 years ago

@ Zuzuna D. Have you been in a;ll the Mosques in this country? if not how do you know that 90% teach hate & destruction?

Zuzana Dratovnikova

90% of all mosques in the United States teach hate and destruction to the USA and are funded from the outside. Anybody still denying it....well....probably congregates on Care2. After all all the social studies in our universities and high schools, even middle schools have been perpetrated with islamic money funding these programs and all the lefties and liberals entering the arena of "true and unbiased" reporting - any wonder for the congregations here?

Debra S.
Debra S6 years ago

What an IDIOT!!! Even if he was actually trying to win, this is stupid!! Surely, this is Bob Turner's way of accepting defeat?? After all, only an IDIOT would start up this ridiculous argument again!! Racist pig!!

Alexandra Rodda
Alexandra Rodda6 years ago

For shame! I hope that GOP candidates will allow the victims of the Twin Towers to rest in peace.

Fred C.
Fred C6 years ago

It may have been taken down from YouTube. Fortunately, however, Bob Turner's ad is still available on Vimeo.

GZM is a still a disgrace, even if the discredited Imam Rauf is no longer the public face of the project and the developer has scaled the project down to 4-5 stories. He still doesn't have the money—the controversy scared off the foreign money that that normally would have been available. The very low-ball figure of $100 million would have been chump change for the Saudis who have generously funded other triumphalist mosques in the US.

Marina J.
Marina Joslin6 years ago

JOBS, JOBS, JOBS AND GOOD, AFFORDABLE EDUCATION, UNIVERSAL HEALTH CARE, ETC. That’s what we want to hear you talking about Mr. Turner!!

Mercedes Lackey
Mercedes Lackey6 years ago

Next the statesmen will invent cheap lies, putting the blame upon the nation that is attacked, and every man will be glad of those conscience-soothing falsities, and will diligently study them, and refuse to examine any refutations of them; and thus he will by and by convince himself that the war is just, and will thank God for the better sleep he enjoys after this process of grotesque self-deception.

— Mark Twain, The Mysterious Stranger, 1916, Ch.9