Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson ignited another Nazi-related controversy on Thursday.
During a CNN interview, Carson was pressed to defend his new book’s claim that Adolf Hitler’s regime benefited from gun control.
The retired neurosurgeon did not back down.
“I think the likelihood of Hitler being abler to accomplish his goals would have been greatly diminished if the people had been armed,” he told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer.
Carson stressed, however, that Hitler was only one of multiple dictators he cited to argue against gun-control policies.
“There were a number of countries where tyranny reigned. And before it happened, they disarmed the people. That was the point,” Carson said, pointing to a US founding father to support his argument. “Noah Webster said … that the people of America would never suffer tyranny because they are armed.”
Carson, who is No. 2 in most GOP primary polls, has previously compared Nazi Germany to the US, arguing that in both societies the government has intimidated the public’s free-speech rights.
During an interview earlier in the week, “The View” host Whoopi Goldberg challenged Carson on the issue.
“What I said was that most of the people in Nazi Germany did not believe in what Hitler was doing. But did they speak up? No,” Carson told Goldberg.
“They kept their mouths shut. And when you do that, you are compromising your freedom and the freedom of people who come behind you. You have to be willing to stand up for what you believe in.”
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.