House Republicans Call For Clinton To Repudiate Blumenthal Comments
WASHINGTON (AllPolitics, May 8) -- Rep. Thomas Bliley, R-Va., and 52 House Republicans sent a letter to President Clinton, asking him to "repudiate" aide Sidney Blumenthal for calling Whitewater prosecutor Ken Starr's deputy "a religious fanatic."
Blumenthal, in a speech at Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government, used the epithet in reference to Hickman Ewing, raising the ire of many Republicans and the religious right.
"Our nation was founded upon the principle of religious freedom," the letter said. "The great Thomas Jefferson, author of the Declaration of Independence and President of the United States, specifically asked to be remembered for the Statute of Virginia for Religious Freedom, which he drafted. Also, how ironic it was that Mr. Blumenthal made his comments at the Kennedy School of Government. In response to the religious bigotry Kennedy encountered, Kennedy said: 'Today I may be the victim, but tomorrow, it may be you -- until the whole fabric of our harmonious society is ripped.'"
"People who work for you should exhibit at least average sensitivity on this important matter. Therefore, we respectfully ask that you send a signal in support of religious freedom by repudiating Mr. Blumenthal's comments," the letter said in conclusion.