POLITICS

Rick Santorum Claims He Supports TSA Using Ethnic And Religious Profiling Of Younger Muslim Males

11/22/2011 08:47 pm ET | Updated Nov 22, 2011

One of the most devout Christians in the GOP field endorsed singling out Muslims for extra screening by the Transportation Security Administration while the only African-American candidate called for racial profiling by another name.

"Obviously, Muslims would be someone you look at, absolutely," said former Pennsylvania senator Rick Santorum. "The radical Muslims are the people committing these crimes, by and large, with younger males" also deserving of more scrutiny at airport checkpoints.

Herman Cain said he was in favor of "targeted identification," another way of saying some people look more suspicious than others. "If you take a look at the people who have tried to kill us it would be easy to identify what that profile looks like." But when moderator Wolf Blitzer suggested that focusing on one sort of person would be like sngling out Christians or Jews, Cain rejected the premise as "simplifying."

Rep. Ron Paul, as is wont in these debates, differed from his rivals. After Santorum noted that Muslims would be "your best candidates" for extra screening, the Texas congressman said, "What if they look like Timothy McVeigh?" referring to the white Christian ex-soldier convicted in 1995's Oklahoma City bombing.

"That's digging a hole for ourselves," Paul said.

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