Frank Gaffney, a prominent anti-Muslim activist and former Reagan administration official, will join the Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) campaign’s national security advisory team, according to Bloomberg’s Eli Lake.
Other members of Gaffney’s Center for Security Policy — Fred Fleitz, Clare Lopez, and Jim Hanson — will also join Cruz’s national security advisory team, according to Bloomberg.
A leading proponent of the notion that there is an existential threat from “creeping Sharia,” Gaffney is known for his extreme anti-Muslim statements and activism, as TPM has chronicled. He has said that members of the Muslim Brotherhood had infiltrated the Obama administration, specifically attacking Hillary Clinton aide Huma Abedin. He’s also argued that U.S. Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan wanted to introduce Sharia law into the U.S. government.
Gaffney was banned from the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in 2010 after he accused CPAC officials like Grover Norquist of infiltrating the organization on behalf of the Muslim Brotherhood. He re-emerged at CPAC this year, where he led a panel called “Countering the Global Jihad.”
Gaffney told Bloomberg that he met Cruz in 2012, when he advised the senator about an investigation into the Muslim Brotherhood.
“I hope that some of that went into his decision to introduce legislation to designate the Muslim Brotherhood as a terrorist organization,” he told Bloomberg.
Cruz, along with several other Republican presidential candidates, spoke at Gaffney’s New Hampshire National Security Action Summit in July.
When Donald Trump announced his proposal to ban Muslims from the United States, he referenced a poll from Gaffney’s Center for Security Policy. At the time, the Center for Security Policy said that it had not been in contact with Trump, and it appears that Gaffney has aligned with Cruz.
As Bloomberg’s Eli Lake noted, Cruz’s team will also include conservatives who disagree with Gaffney’s views on Muslims and the threat of Sharia, like former Sen. Jim Talent (R-MO) and former Reagan official Michael Ledeen.