Robert Moses, Republican candidate for Governor, denounced the injection of the religious issue into the forthcoming gubernatorial election campaign, in which he opposes Governor Herbert H. Lehman, candidate to succeed himself on the Democratic ticket.
Mr. Moses made a forthright statement repudiating religion as an issue in the campaign in the address he delivered Thursday evening at Kismet Temple, Brooklyn, in his speech of official acceptance of the Republican designation.
After discussing what he termed some of the other “false issues which have been put up like stage scenery to obscure the real ones,” Mr. Moses said:
WON’T DEBATE TOPIC
“Let me refer briefly to another personal issue, which is so foreign to American principles of government and fair play that it seems almost unthinkable that it should arise in a campaign in this state. This is the question of race and religion. Apparently there are certain people who would like to settle the present campaign for the Governorship on the basis of the comparative orthodoxy of the present Governor and myself. I do not intend to be led into a controversy on this subject. I am sure it is just as distasteful to Governor Lehman as it is to me. It is set forth in the Constitution of the United States that there shall never be a religious test required as a qualification for public office under the United States, and it is provided in our state constitution that the exercise of religious profession without discrimination or preference shall forever be allowed in this state to all mankind.
“I believe not only in these guaranties, but in the spirit which underlies them. I do not consider it to be the legitimate business of any voter in this state to question me as to my religious views or as to those of my family. They have no place in this campaign. There has been altogether too much political interference and dictation by the professional members of various religious groups. I believe that the rank and file of fair-minded people in this state are heartily sick of such interference and pressure. In any event, I am sure that the overwhelming majority in this state will not allow a question of this sort to occupy their serious attention in this campaign.”