Questions for the First Muslim Federal Judicial Nominee
The Senate Judiciary Committee hearing for the first Muslim federal judicial nominee is set for Wednesday April 28th. Zahid Quraishi, if confirmed, would become a federal judge for the U.S. District of New Jersey.
Given the numerous ways Islamic doctrine conflicts with the U.S. Constitution, Quraishi should be asked the following questions (which have been provided to the Republican members of the Senate Judiciary Committee) at the hearing:
It has been reported you are a Muslim. While there is no religious test for federal office, the Senate and the American people are entitled to know whether your religious beliefs are compatible or incompatible with U.S. law — the law which, if you are confirmed, you will be asked to swear to uphold. As a preliminary question, do you as a Muslim affirm and adhere to Islamic doctrine from the Quran, hadith, and other authoritative Islamic sources?
Islamic doctrine holds that sharia law should be the supreme law of the land throughout the entire world. It further holds that sharia law is divine in origin and thus superior to any human-made law, including the U.S. Constitution. If confirmed, you will be asked to swear an oath you will uphold the U.S. Constitution, which by virtue of its Article VI, is the supreme law of the land. Do you renounce the portions of Islamic doctrine calling for the supremacy of sharia law and the subjugation of all human-made law to sharia law?
Islamic doctrine holds that jihad is the means by which the supremacy of sharia law is to be achieved. Do you renounce the portions of Islamic doctrine calling for jihad to achieve sharia supremacy?
What role, if any, should sharia law play in federal cases? In family law?
Will you go on record now and state that our First Amendment right to freedom of speech gives the right to anyone in the United States to criticize or disagree with your prophet Muhammad, and will you also go on record now and state that you support and defend anyone’s right to criticize or disagree with your prophet Muhammad, and that you condemn anyone who threatens death or physical harm to another person who is exercising that right?
Our First Amendment guarantees freedom of religion in the United States. As part of that freedom, anyone in the United States has the right to join or leave any religion, or have no religion at all. Will you go on record now and state that you support and defend the idea that in the United States a Muslim has not only the freedom to leave Islam, but to do so without fear of physical harm, and will you also go on record now and state that you condemn anyone who threatens physical harm to a Muslim who is exercising that freedom?
According to the words of Allah found in Quran 5:38 and the teachings of your prophet Muhammad, amputation of a hand is an acceptable punishment for theft. But our U.S. Constitution, which consists of man-made laws, has the Eighth Amendment that prohibits cruel and unusual punishment such as this. Do you agree with Allah and your prophet Muhammad that amputation of a hand is an acceptable punishment for theft in the United States, or do you believe that our man-made laws prohibiting such punishments are true laws and are to be followed instead of this 7th Century command of Allah and teaching of Muhammad?
According to the words of Allah found in Quran 4:3, Muslim men are allowed, but not required, to be married to up to four wives. Being married to more than one wife in the United States is illegal according to our man-made bigamy laws. Do you agree with Allah that it is legal for a Muslim man in the United States to be married to more than one woman, or do you believe that our man-made laws prohibiting bigamy are true laws and are to be followed instead of this 7th Century command of Allah?
Do you affirm or renounce the following from Islamic sources and scholars:
- “the worst of all the moving creatures, in the sight of Allah, are those who reject Faith and do not believe” (Quran verse 8:55)?
- the testimony of a woman is worth half that of a man’s in court (various sources collected here)?
- the non-recognition of marital rape?
If confirmed, would you enforce U.S. antiterrorism laws against your fellow Muslims accused of violating those laws (e.g., providing material support for terrorism — 18 U.S. Code § 2339B)?
Are you a member of the Assembly of Muslim Jurists of America (AMJA)?
Do you agree with AMJA that
- Muslims should not work in American law enforcement?
- Muslims should not be “pleased with a legal system that does not come from Allah”?
- Muslims should seek justice in Islamic courts, not secular courts?