Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Texas) took a shot at President Obama’s foreign policy in an impassioned speech on the House floor Wednesday, slamming the administration’s response to the killings of four Americans, including U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens, by radical Islamists during an attack on the U.S. embassy in Libya.
After paying tribute to Stevens, Gohmert seemingly lectured the current administration on its duty to protect the United States from all enemies, foreign and domestic.
“It does not help when an administration in response to American attacks on American Soil and American individuals, the administration ends up asking Americans to give up their First Amendment rights for which our service members are fighting,” Gohmert said. “It doesn’t help when a general asks an American to give up your First Amendment rights rather than proclaiming, ‘We’re the United States military, you have attacked our country, you have attacked our brothers and sisters, and you will pay for that.'”
But that’s not how the federal government responded to the crisis, he explained. After a group of radical Islamists tore apart an American flag at a U.S. consulate in Cairo, the embassy released a statement apologizing for people in America that may have hurt the “religious feelings” of Muslims. To be fair, the White House later released a statement distancing itself from the apology.
“It’s OK to burn a Bible, that’s OK,” Gohmert said, mocking the current administration. “OK to burn a flag, OK, that’s all right,” he continued. “But just, you know, for heaven’s sake don’t say anything that might offend someone of the Islamic religion.”
Gohmert said he doesn’t encourage anyone to offend Muslims but added that “we should defend ourselves against radical Islamists that want to annihilate this country and destroy our way of life.” President Obama has failed thus far to address the threat of radical Islam, according to Gohmert.
While several U.S. officials and various news reports initially insisted the attacks on the embassy in Libya were because of an anti-Muslim YouTube clip, Gohmert suggested the attack was coordinated and planned to occur on Sept. 11, using the video as a cover to carry out the assault. To back up his claim, he cited a Fox News report. The U.S. government is now investigating whether the attack was indeed planned in advance, according to The New York Times.
The Texas congressman also criticized President Obama for declining an invitation from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to meet when he is in the United States. He suggested Obama squeeze him into his schedule when he’s not playing golf or holding fundraisers.
“We see people in the Middle East begin to have dreams of new Ottoman Empire where everyone will be subjected to some of what we’ve seen happen in those countries where we helped bring about an Arab Spring that’s turned into a Winter nightmare,” he said. “This is not a time to play petty personal games, to snub leaders of friends, of allies, even when you disagree with them for heaven’s sake.”
He went on: “Take a little time from a fundraiser, take a little time that you don’t go to the golf course and meet with the leader of a country that sees hatred for its people, anti-semitism, the racism, the bigotry growing around the world, who is scared for its own existence, who can’t be sure that we’re going to be there with them because of the actions of this administration.”
“I mean, it is an inconvenient thing to have to be president when you really are best at running for office,” he said.
Watch Gohmert’s entire House floor speech here via CSPAN: