Santorum aide: I ‘misspoke’ on Obama’s ‘radical Islamic policies’


Rick Santorum on “Face the Nation.” (GETTY IMAGES)

At a campaign stop in Ohio on Saturday, Santorum said the president’s agenda was based in “phony theology. ... not a theology based on the Bible.” On CBS the next day, he said he was “talking about the radical environmentalists,” not questioning the president’s personal faith.

“I’ve repeatedly said that I believe the president’s Christian — he says he’s Christian,” the candidate said. “But I am talking about his worldview, the way he addresses problems in this country. ... We’re not here to serve the earth. That is not the objective, man is the objective.”

But on Monday, Santorum aide Alice Stewart told MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell, while elaborating on what the candidate sees as a dangerous environmental agenda, Stewart said Santorum was speaking of the “radical Islamic policies the president has.”

Stewart called MSNBC to explain that she had slipped up.

“I was talking about radical environmental policies and I misspoke,” Stewart told The Fix. “I regret it.”

Mitchell later said on air that she didn’t catch the gaffe herself or she would have asked for a correction in the moment.

“I really, frankly, did not hear her use the word Islamic,” Mitchell said. “But the tape tells the tale.”

Stewart previously worked as a spokeswoman for the presidential campaign of Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) and in 2008 for former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee. She was hired by the Santorum campaign this month.

Rachel Weiner covers local politics for The Washington Post.

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