ABOARD AIR FORCE ONE (WKOW) -- Politics wasn't a factor in President Barack Obama's remarks about building a mosque near the site of the attacks in New York City, Sept. 11, 2001, according to a White House spokesman.
Deputy White House press secretary Bill Burton said it was "not politics" but Obama's feeling that he had the obligation as president to "make sure people are treated equally" under the Constitution.
Obama has said that religious freedom allows the mosque to be built, but didn't comment on the judgment of building one two blocks from ground zero. Republicans show negative feedback for his comments, making it an election issue.
Burton said Obama "felt it was his obligation as president to address this." Obama was on the way to Wisconsin for fundraising.