Flake says he won't back Roy Moore, citing Muslim remark

Sen. Jeff FlakeJeffrey (Jeff) Lane FlakeTrump says he's 'very happy' some GOP senators have 'gone on to greener pastures' Trump endorses McSally in Arizona Senate race Jeff Flake becoming Harvard fellow MORE (R-Ariz.) told reporters Thursday that he will not support or endorse Republican Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore, citing his past comment that Muslims should not be allowed to serve in Congress.

“A guy who says that a Muslim member of Congress shouldn’t be able to serve, that’s not right," Flake reportedly said Thursday.

Moore, who is running in the special election to replace Attorney General Jeff Sessions, was twice removed from his position as chief justice of Alabama's Supreme Court, once for refusing to remove a monument of the Ten Commandments from courthouse grounds and once for telling lower judges to ignore the U.S. Supreme Court ruling legalizing same-sex marriage.

In 2006, the former judge took issue with Rep. Keith EllisonKeith Maurice EllisonMinnesota AG will defend state's abortion restrictions despite personal views Hillicon Valley: House panel advances election security bill | GOP senator targets YouTube with bill on child exploitation | Hicks told Congress Trump camp felt 'relief' after release of Clinton docs | Commerce blacklists five Chinese tech groups Four more states join attorneys general lawsuit to block T-Mobile-Sprint merger MORE (D-Minn.), the first Muslim in Congress, over his decision to take his oath of office on a Quran instead of a Bible.

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“In 1943, we would never have allowed a member of Congress to take their oath on ‘Mein Kampf,’ or someone in the 1950s to swear allegiance to the ‘Communist Manifesto,’ ” he wrote at the time. 

Moore has been a point of contention among Republicans since he became the party's Senate nominee after a hotly contested GOP primary, receiving a mix of endorsements and criticism from lawmakers in his party.

Sen. Ben SasseBenjamin (Ben) Eric SasseSwing-state Democrats see trouble in proposed pay hike House Dems move to give lawmakers a pay increase Conservatives spark threat of bloody GOP primaries MORE (R-Neb.) this week also slammed Moore for his previous comments on Muslims, noting the United States Constitution stipulates that there is no religious test required to run for congressional office.

“You can’t have people running for office — I don’t know the particulars of what Moore has said — but as it’s been reported, you cant have people running for office saying that being a Muslim would be a disqualification for being in Congress. The constitution is pretty dang clear about not having a religious litmus test," Sasse told conservative writer Jonah Goldberg in an interview on the podcast "The Remnant."

Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzWhite House to convene social media summit after new Trump attacks GOP lays debate trap for 2020 Democrats O'Rourke on Senate bid backer Beyoncé: I will have to 'earn her support' for 2020 MORE (R-Texas) praised Moore this week, calling him a "conservative who will proudly defend Alabama values" in a post on his website.