Newt Gingrich, one of the final candidates to become Donald Trump’s running mate, called for testing of “every person who is of a Muslim background” to determine whether they “believe in sharia” in response to Thursday’s attack in Nice, France.
Hours after Donald Trump declared that the attack in Nice constituted war against France and the United States, the former House speaker cast the struggle more broadly, saying: “Western civilization is in a war.”
Gingrich then suggested that those who failed a test and were found to be adherents of “sharia law” should be deported from the country. The highly charged proposal echoes Trump’s controversial idea to institute a religious test for immigrants entering the country “until we figure out what is going on.”
Speaking to Fox News, Gingrich insinuated that such a test would weed out Islamic State sympathizers. “We need to be fairly relentless about defining who our enemies are,” he said. “Anybody who goes on a website favoring ISIS, or Al Qaeda, or other terrorist groups, that should be a felony, and they should go to jail. Any organization which hosts such a website should be engaged in a felony. It should be closed down immediately.”