ADL Distressed That Two Members of Congress are Scheduled to Host Anti-Muslim Bigot Geert Wilders in Washington

New York, NY, April 27, 2015 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) is deeply distressed that two members of Congress are reportedly hosting anti-Muslim bigot Geert Wilders, leader of the xenophobic Freedom Party in the Netherlands, as a guest speaker later this week in Washington, D.C.

Wilders reported on his blog he will be in the nation’s capital on April 29 as the guest of Reps. Steve King, R-Iowa, and Louie Gohmert, R-Texas, and will be speaking at a breakfast sponsored by the Conservative Opportunity Society as well as at a reception later in the day.

As leader of the Freedom Party, Wilders has expressed virulently anti-Muslim, bigoted and profoundly offensive views.  In April 23 letters to Reps. King and Gohmert asking them to reconsider the invitation, ADL noted Wilders has called Islam “not a religion” but rather a “totalitarian ideology akin to National Socialism” and has described the Qur’an as being “even worse than Mein Kampf.”

“Mr. Wilders is entitled to express his opinions, but for an elected member of the House of Representatives to provide a platform for a man who is practically an international symbol of anti-Muslim hatred not only lends him credibility, it ill-serves the goal of having a Congress that lives up to America’s ideals of tolerance,” said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director. “Reps. King and Gohmert should reconsider the invitation, given this individual’s established record as one of the most notorious bigots in the world.”

Wilders routinely voices his opinion that “Islam is evil” and calls for the closing down of Muslim schools and mosques, as he did in most recently in November 2014 at the David Horowitz Freedom Center’s Restoration Weekend in Florida.

ADL is the world’s leading anti-hate organization. Founded in 1913 in response to an escalating climate of anti-Semitism and bigotry, its timeless mission is to protect the Jewish people and to secure justice and fair treatment for all. Today, ADL continues to fight all forms of hate with the same vigor and passion. A global leader in exposing extremism, delivering anti-bias education, and fighting hate online, ADL is the first call when acts of anti-Semitism occur. ADL’s ultimate goal is a world in which no group or individual suffers from bias, discrimination or hate.

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