Dr. Terry Jones, the Quran-burning preacher from Florida, has announced he is running for president and told The Christian Post that Muslims should vote for him. The preacher also said he would support Republican presidential contender Herman Cain if his White House bid fails.
Jones' presidential campaign, Stand Up America!, was launched on Oct. 26 on a platform that promises to solve the economic crisis, bring home the troops, deport all "illegals," and reduce corporate taxes. In an interview with CP Thursday, Jones explained why he is the best man for the job, despite being viewed as a bigot by some Americans.
"I till tell [the American people] what they need to hear, which has been missing from politics for a long time,” Jones said, adding that too many politicians nowadays are "hiding the truth" about what dire shape the country is in economically.
Jones' desire to balance the budget and tackle economic and immigration issues sounds commonplace, but then there is the whole issue about being known as a Muslim-hater who held a national "Burn a Quran Day" and sells books titled Islam Is of the Devil, which is not necessarily on the resume of other candidates and could be considered a bit off-putting to the nearly 3 million Muslims in the United States.
However, Jones insists his reputation should not be a hindrance. In fact, the Florida preacher says Muslims should cast a vote for him.
"As an American, I support [Muslims'] religious rights," Jones said. "I definitely would respect and honor their First Amendment rights."
But what about the Quran burnings and the Islam Is of the Devil book?
"My problem is with the radical element – the ones trying to take away our constitutional rights and implement shariah law," Jones explained.
Jones first came to national attention in 2010 when he created a national "Burn a Quran Day." The stunt caused an uproar around the country and caused several high-profile individuals, including President Barack Obama, to call on the pastor to cancel the burning.
Although Jones canceled the initial "Burn a Quran Day," he later changed his mind and held a public burning of the Islamic holy book.
When asked whom he would support if he does not win his White House bid, Jones replied, "I like Herman Cain."