Bloomberg: Don't Probe Ground Zero Mosque - NBC New York

Bloomberg: Don't Probe Ground Zero Mosque



    Bloomberg: Don't Probe Ground Zero Mosque
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    Work continues on the World Trade Center site which is being constructed at ground zero February 11, 2009 in New York City.

    Mayor Michael Bloomberg said it would be un-American to investigate the mosque that is planned for construction near where the World Trade Center once stood.

    Bloomberg was asked Monday about GOP gubernatorial candidate Rick Lazio's demands last week that Democratic rival Andrew Cuomo investigate the mosque being developed near the Sept. 11 attack site.

    The mayor has defended the mosque plans before. On Monday, he said investigating or vetting religious organizations goes against what the nation stands for.

    Lazio has refused to say whether he opposes the building of a mosque near the site. He said he is concerned that not enough is known about the project's funding sources. Cuomo has said he supports the mosque project.

    Meanwhile, Long Island Rep. Peter King, the ranking Republican on the House Homeland Security Committee said Monday he favors an investigation into the funding of the proposed mosque.

    In an interview with the Associated Press, Rep. Peter King raised concerns about the sources of funding for the proposed $100 million mosque, just blocks away from the site of the Sept. 11 attacks, where nearly 3,000 Americans died at the hands of Islamic terrorists.

    "It's a house of worship, but we are at war with al-Qaida," King said. "I think the 9/11 families have a right to know where the funding comes from; I think there are significant questions."

    The mosque is a project of the American Society for Muslim Advancement and the Cordoba Institute, which promotes cross-cultural understanding between Islam and the West. Cordoba's director, Imam Faisel Abdul Rauf, has refused to disclose the sources of funding for the mosque and once suggested in a television interview that U.S. policies contributed to the 9/11 attacks.

    Even though a mosque is supposed to be a religious setting, ground zero may not be an appropriate spot for this or any proposed mosque, King said.

    "Right at this moment in history, it's bad form to put it there," he said. "There are things you are allowed to do, but that aren't appropriate to do."