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Press Release: Senator Tapio: Interfaith Day in

Capitol Rotunda is Politically Motivated, Insulting

to Military Veterans 

January 9, 2018

Contact: Neal Tapio


Republican State Senator Neal Tapio of Watertown

expressed concern today about the political
motivations of “religious leaders” sponsoring the
Interfaith Day at the Capital. A simple check of
their social
accounts will
verify these
Trump and
his efforts to This is the root cause of Islamic
keep terrorism
America safe
from Islamic Terror.

Tapio said real dialogue begins by recognizing the

foundation of the “endless war on terror.” Terror is
spread in nearly every Muslim country by those

Why do so many
believe in the death
penalty for leaving
What is sharia law and
Islam. Where does
Islamic law?
this come from?

who believe in a hateful and deadly version of

Islamic Law, called sharia law, that believes you
should be killed for leaving Islam. Keeping our
country safe from Islamic terrorism can only begin
by asking how an open and pluralist society
identifies and eliminates that thread of Islamic Law
that preaches hatred and death.

“It was very clear last session that these same

people pushing interfaith dialogue have contempt
for those Americans concerned about an endless
war on terror,” Tapio said. “Fourteen Islamic
Countries, who have fully implemented Islamic
Law, kill you for leaving Islam. Pew Research
indicates that up to 350 million people, who
consider themselves Muslim, believe you should
be killed for leaving Islam. Patriotic Americans
simply believe it is our responsibility to identify the
real source of terror and to keep that hateful and
deadly ideology out of the United States, out of
South Dakota and out of our local communities.”

The interfaith dialogue people have labeled the

tens of thousands of South Dakotans that voted
for Donald Trump racists, haters, extremists and
islamophobes. Tapio questioned if they intended to
begin their interfaith dialogue by ostracizing and
marginalizing those with whom they disagree?

The people behind the interfaith dialogue hide

behind politically leftist hate groups such as the
Southern Poverty Law Center, famous for labeling
a group started by James Dobson, the founder of
the Christian radio program “Focus on the Family,”
a hate group. They have even gone so far as to
label an Aberdeen group of concerned mothers,
grandmothers and great grandmothers a hate
group simply because they are concerned about
the increase in crime in their local community.

“Real dialogue begins with honesty and the

complete search for truth. Hiding behind an
interfaith group and then using terrorist style
bullying tactics in the press is a slap in the face of
every patriotic American service member that
signed up to defend freedom for all those wishing
to be completely free, regardless of your faith, and
regardless of whether you are a Bhuddist, Hindu,
Muslim, Christian or atheist. True American patriots
fight for all those that wish to escape totalitarian
and brutally hateful regimes that kill you for what
you believe or don’t believe.

“Counting those killed on September 11th, 2001,

more than 10,000 Americans have died and more
than one million American soldiers have been
wounded in the War on Terror,” Tapio said. “We
have spent nearly $6.5 trillion on this endless war.”

“While cultural messages of inclusiveness are
important, I think it’s far more important that we
respect the sacrifice and tremendous grief of
South Dakota’s military families and those who
have suffered so deeply in this ongoing war
against Islamic terror, both at home and abroad.”
Tapio said. “I plan on using this moment to talk
realistically about the complex issues still facing
our nation in dealing with Islamic terrorism and the
dangers presented by those that subscribe to a
hateful and deadly ideology,” Tapio said.

“Islamic attacks on American soil and the massive
increase in Islamic terror attacks in Western Europe
are key evidence of what’s truly at stake in dealing
with large, mobile populations of unvetted Muslims
that are being relocated to peaceful western
nations,” Tapio said.  “Political correctness and
careful talking points by career politicians are not
going to solve these problems,”  Tapio said.  

The issue of Islamic terror and immigration policy

has been at the center of the race for Congress in
South Dakota, with GOP candidate and Secretary
of State Shantel Krebs appearing publicly with
Kansas Secretary of State, Chris Kobach at an
event in December.  As an advisor to President
Donald Trump, Kobach is widely recognized as a
leading critic of Obama era immigration and
resettlement rules allowing free passage and
mandatory placement of more than 100,000
Middle Eastern and Muslim refugees on American
soil.  Prior to the Kobach-Krebs event, State
Senator Neal Tapio challenged Krebs to openly
and fully explain Trump immigration policy rather
than simply draping herself in a photo opportunity
with a Trump advisor for political effect and media
attention.  Tapio says Krebs failed the test badly,
resulting in a visibly awkward media moment 
between Kobach and a candidate clearly unwilling
to talk openly about Islamic terror.

“I think it became very obvious to South Dakota
voters that while Shantel Krebs understands the
political value of appearing strong on Islamic terror
and immigration policy, she lacks the moral
courage and topical fluency to deal with those
issues at a deep policy level with any substance or
authority,” Tapio said. “At least her advisors had
the instincts right to have her embrace Donald
Trump by jumping on his bandwagon once he was
elected, and offering support for his policies before
she unwittingly called him ‘anti Muslim.’ Dusty
Johnson actually failed to throw his limited weight
behind President Trump’s policies at all.”

Candidates understand that mouthing the Trump

message on certain issues is politically valuable in
this Congressional race, but frankly, it’s insulting to
the people of South Dakota and to intelligence in
general to have such grave issues of national
security turned into a dog and phony show to
score political points.”  Tapio said. 

Political leaders must show the same courage and

bravery displayed by our patriotic American
veterans, and their loved ones, who selflessly offer
their lives for all those wishing to be completely

It is our duty.