RELIGION

Texas lawmaker polls mosque leaders on Sharia law support

A Texas lawmaker is asking state mosque leaders to pledge support for the "safety" of former Muslims in a mailed survey being condemned by Islamic civil rights groups.

A spokesman for the Council on American-Islamic Relations said Thursday that he told mosque leaders to ignore Republican state Rep. Kyle Biedermann.

One question asks respondents to renounce any possible persecution that those leaving Islam could face. Others inquired about renouncing "institutionalized Sharia law" and gauged support for having the U.S. State Department label the Muslim Brotherhood a foreign terrorist organization.

Biedermann said in a statement that the survey was prepared for an upcoming homeland security conference.

Another Texas lawmaker, Rep. Molly White, sparked outcry in 2015 after instructing Muslims visiting her state Capitol office to declare their allegiance to the U.S.