Infamously ill-tempered Fox News co-host and former Democrat strategist Bob Beckel on Monday suggested that the U.S. stop accepting foreign Muslim students until the ones already here have been thoroughly vetted.

“The hatred for the United States runs deep,” he said during a broader discussion on the Boston Bombings.

“I think we really have to consider, given the fact that so many people hate us,” he added, “that we’re going to have to cut off Muslim students coming to this country for some period of time so that we can absorb what we’ve got, and look at what we’ve got, and decide whether some of the people here should be sent back home or to prison.”

Beckel’s comments come at the 04:20 mark:

Unsurprisingly, the liberal pundit’s moratorium recommendation stirred up controversy on both sides of the aisle. Fox News’ Megyn Kelley, for example, on Tuesday challenged him to defend his position.

“It wouldn’t have stopped the Boston Marathon bombing, but there is a lot of investigation that needs to be done and take a break and get that done and take a two-year hiatus” from awarding visas to students from Muslim countries, he explained.

“How do we get there?” Kelly asked.

She pointed out that among 75,000 Muslim student visas in the U.S., only five have been linked to terrorist activities.

“The numbers are not in favor of saying let’s penalizing,” she said.

“Of the 74,995, how many of those have been looked at very carefully?” Beckel said. “We have a lot of students here who may themselves harbor feelings about resentments. They come from countries where they brainwashed from the United States from the beginning.”

“If that’s true, why aren’t we seeing mass attempts of terror by these students?” she pushed. “The facts don’t bear it out.”

But even after being challenged by Kelley, Beckel refused to back down, reaffirming his position later in a tweet and during a Tuesday broadcast of Fox News’ “The Five.”

“Despite the early morning calls from my liberal friends who hung up on me,” Beckel said, he chose not to “pull back” on his suggestion.

“If the FBI could not deal with this fellow in Boston with all they had on him,” Beckel said, “it seems to me that we ought to give time for them to clear up their problems with the current Muslim population here and then let students come back in.”

Well alright then. Didn’t see that one coming.

Follow Becket Adams (@BecketAdams) on Twitter

(H/T: Mediaite). Featured image zap2it.com