Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., defended this week's scheduled hearings on homegrown radical Islam against protests that his Homeland Security Committee is unfairly targeting a single religious group.
"The main goal is to show the extent of radicalization within the Muslim-American community, how dangerous that is, how serious that is," he said Monday on Fox News's Fox and Friends. "I will have witnesses there to show it's a real threat. It's a growing threat, and it's not just me saying this."
King's comments follow a high-profile demonstration in Times Square on Sunday attended by several hundred protesters, according to The New York Times, as well as the support of a few well-known celebrities. Deputy National Security Adviser Denis McDonough also told an audience at a Washington-area mosque on Sunday that the White House is committed to a positive and productive relationship with Muslims.
King made reference to the protest but said it wouldn't curb his efforts.
"I have no choice, I'm going ahead with the hearings, and they can yell in Times Square and they can get all the celebrities out they want, I'm not going to stop," he said. "I'm not going to give in to political correctness. I'm going ahead."
The hearings begin on Thursday. King said the three main witnesses would be a Muslim Navy veteran critical of leaders in the Islamic community and two relatives of young men who were radicalized.