When Farouk Shami's gubernatorial campaign officials were asked in November what his religion is, they said he is Quaker.It's not the religion that matters, it's the equivocation. If he is Muslim, but doesn't want to say it, go with "I'm spiritual but not religious." Sheesh, what do you have consultants for? Yes, sometimes people get elected pretending to be what they're not, but far better to just be authentic.
But on Monday, other campaign officials said he is not.
Regardless of what religion the Palestinian-born U.S. citizen is — his campaign says he's not Muslim, but family members say he is — the fact that his campaign is putting out conflicting information could become a political liability.
Shami, a Democrat, said in a written statement Monday that he is "not a member of any specific religious tradition."
"To say simply 'I'm a Muslim' or 'I'm a Quaker' is to ignore major parts of my faith," said the statement by Shami, a Houston businessman who has said he'll spend $10 million of his money on his campaign. "I know it seems complicated that I do not have a pat answer to questions about what religion I am, but without my exposure to many different cultures and religious beliefs, I wouldn't be the person I am today."
If I were Shami, I'd get a spot up on the air tonight. This isn't the way to introduce a candidate.
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