Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson said in an interview Tuesday that American Muslims who follow Islamic Shariah law while professing to love American democratic values must be "schizophrenic."
When Breitbart News Daily host Stephen Bannon asked Carson whether he thought those who adhere to Shariah could successfully integrate into a society that conforms to the rule of law, Carson replied: "Only if they're schizophrenic. I don’t see how they can do it otherwise, because you have two different philosophies" whose ideologies conflict.
Republican presidential candidate Dr. Ben Carson speaks during the Faith & Freedom Coalitions Road to Majority conference, which featured speeches by conservative politicians at the Washington, D.C., Omni Shoreham Hotel June 19.(Al Drago/CQ Roll Call)
“There’s a difference between Muslims who accept America and accept our Constitution and accept our ways and those who want to continue a different method of living," Carson said. "And if we’re not sophisticated enough to understand that, then we will lose that war."
Throughout his campaign, the retired neurosurgeon has repeatedly said that the president of the United States should not be a practicing Muslim due to the religion's ultimately conflicting political nature. Carson has made similar comments about members of Congress and the judiciary.
Later in the interview, Bannon asked Carson to respond to Donald Trump's comments during Saturday's debate and in the days following in which the GOP candidate accused the Bush administration of misleading the American public into war following the 9/11 terror attacks.
“I think that’s garbage. I’ve known George W. Bush for a very long time — he is a patriot, he loves America," Carson said.
The candidate also said that Trump's candidacy could "easily collapse" once people "start looking very closely at, you know, his beliefs and, you know, people may start looking seriously at the policies that I’ve put out and other people have put out and actually make a serious decision.” Carson's comments come just a day after fellow Republican candidate Texas Sen. Ted Cruz released his latest television ad slamming Trump for his evolving views on abortion.
Bannon asked Carson to explain how his views on Islam could be reconciled with President Bush's declaration that Islam is "a religion of peace" just days after the 9/11 attacks.
“Bear in mind, there are a lot of people in this country who will say that same thing ... because they bought into it," Carson said, mentioning that he always tells audiences to read about the Prophet Muhammad and "why people didn't like" him, "somebody who lives a life who is in no way comparable to Jesus Christ."