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Oops: Santorum Rep. Accidentally Cites Obama‘s ’Radical Islamic Policies’ During MSNBC Interview

Santorum Rep. Cites Obamas Radical Islamic Policies During MSNBC Interview

In what is surely the most unfortunate gaffe of the day, Rick Santorum spokeswoman Alice Stewart made a comment about radical Islam and President Barack Obama on MSNBC’s “Andrea Mitchell Reports.”

This morning, we brought you Santorum’s communication director Hogan Gidley and his response to the candidate’s “phony theology” comments over the weekend. But when Stewart also took a crack at explaining the contender‘s original intentions when speaking about Obama’s agenda, she dug the controversy hole even deeper.

Stewart mistakenly claimed that Santorum was referring to Obama’s “radical Islamic policies” — a slip of the tongue that is gaining her (and the campaign) some unwanted attention.

“There is a type of theological secularism when in comes to the global warmists in this country. That’s what he was referring to,” Stewart said during the interview. “He was referring to the president’s policies in terms of the radical Islamic policies the president has.”

Watch the clip, below (at one point it sounds like she almost says “Islamic” again, but corrects herself following the first slip-up):

After the segment aired, Stewart called the network and said that she misspoke. POLITICO has more:

Mitchell noted she had missed Stewart’s phrasing of “radical Islamic policies” during the live interview.

“She had repeatedly said during that same interview ‘radical environmental policies’ and she said she slipped when she apparently said [it],” Mitchell said. “I did not hear it, or I would have caught her on it and tried to get a correction at the moment. I really, frankly, did not hear her use the word Islamic, but the tape tells the tale.”

While the comment is widely being dubbed accidental, The Washington Post’s Anne Kornblut said later in the day that conspiracy theorists may still grab onto it as an intentional message the Santorum campaign is trying to covertly convey.

“I expect we’re going to hear more from Alice Stewart apologizing about those remarks,” Kornblut said. “But there will be conspiracy theorists thinking it was some kind of message she was trying to get out or it was really on the mind of the Santorum campaign when they are talking about President Obama.”

Mediate’s Jon Bershad also commented on the error, offering his views about how Stewart’s slip-up came to fruition:

Here’s how I think it happened. Just this past weekend, the New York Times Magazine published a lengthy article about the way the brain breaks down difficult tasks into easily repeatable habit packs so that you can do them over and over again without expanding too much brain power, using as examples a rat in a maze and a person learning how to back a car out of a driveway.

People who work for the campaigns of the GOP candidates have to trash President Obama a lot. It only makes sense that their brains would package it into easy habits filled with buzzwords like “socialist” and “radical Islam” even if they have absolutely no connection to the conversation at hand. Stewart probably wasn’t attempting some kind of deceptive fear-mongering. She was just a political rat stuck in a campaign maze and trying to get to the White House cheese.

A “rat stuck in a campaign maze?” An interesting analogy to say the least.

(H/T: POLITICO)

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