WASHINGTON — Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, called on President Barack Obama to tell Sudan to free Meriam Ibrahim, the wife of an American citizen sentenced to death for her Christian faith, and her two babies, and let her go home.
At the Faith & Freedom Coalition's "Road to Majority 2014" conference Thursday, Cruz got a round of applause after he said, "we need leadership in America. The president of the United States should stand up and speak on Meriam Ibrahim's behalf."
Cruz also mentioned Saeed Abedini, an American pastor imprisoned in Iran, and the Obama administration's birth control mandate, in his speech about religious freedom.
Ibrahim, Cruz reminded the audience, is awaiting a death sentence "for the simple crime of being Christian."
"For all of us, faith is an incredible part of who we are. And yet few, if any of us in this room have ever had faith tested like that," he said.
Meriam's children, a 20-month-old son and a daughter who was recently born while she was in prison, are with her in the prison. Since Meriam is married to an American citizen, Cruz pointed out, her two babies are also American citizens, "and they are languishing in prison in Sudan waiting for their mother to be whipped and hung to death."
Cruz then called on Obama to get personally involved in the case.
"We need to speak out against these atrocities," he said. "We need to speak with one uniform, powerful clarion voice for freedom and we need the president of the United States to say in no uncertain terms, 'send Meriam home.'"
At the time of this publication, a White House petition asking Obama to pressure the Sudanese government to send Ibrahim home has collected over 52,000 signatures. 100,000 are needed for an official White House response.