Presidential candidate and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee (R) made some colourful quips during a Fox News interview last weekend.
Huckabee was asked how his strong stance against the US accepting Syrian refugees comported with the Statue of Liberty poem that states: “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free.”
“The Statue of Liberty says, ‘Bring us your tired and your weary.’ It didn’t say, ‘Bring us your terrorists and let them come in here and bomb neighbourhoods, cafes, and concert halls,'” Huckabee responded.
Several Republican presidential candidates, including Huckabee, have been raging against the possibility of the Syrian refugees coming to the US. They point to last week’s terror attacks in Paris, in which one of the attackers reportedly held a Syrian passport.
“What we saw in Paris was the result of open borders in Europe. The EU has proven itself to be a failure in dealing with terrorism,” Huckabee said, citing French President Francois Hollande’s decision to close his country’s borders after the attack.
“I think when you see the left-wing, socialist president of France — a very politically correct country — saying, ‘It’s time to close our borders,’ and he does so immediately, I think it might be a clue to America,” Huckabee said.
“It’s time to wake up and smell the falafel,” he added. “Something isn’t going right in this open-immigration policy. We are importing terrorism.”
In a separate Fox News interview last weekend, Huckabee repeated the “falafel” line: “The immigration issue does go front-and-center as a result of what happened in Paris. And we better start waking up. I say it this way: We better wake up and smell the falafel.”
On Monday, Huckabee continued to blast President Barack Obama’s support for accepting Syrian refugees. Huckabee issued a particularly fiery statement on the topic that called Obama’s approach to terrorism “wimpish and amateurish”:
President Obama’s wimpish and amateurish response to Islamic jihadists this morning reveals we have a Cub Scout for Commander in Chief instead of someone who is capable of defending America and unleashing something more than a strongly worded letter through the UN. It’s embarrassing when a left-wing socialist French President shows strength and determination to eradicate animals who are slaughtering innocent civilians while our President lectures us on the moral necessity to open our borders to tens of thousands of un-vetted people from the Middle East. France has closed its borders and all President Obama wants to do is close Gitmo.
At a Monday press conference in Turkey, Obama issued a passionate defence of accepting Syrian refugees, including Muslims, who are fleeing the violence in their country.
“The people who are fleeing Syria are the most harmed by terrorism, they are the most vulnerable as a consequence of civil war and strife,” Obama said. “It is very important … that we do not close our hearts to the victims of such violence and somehow start equating the issue of refugees with the issue of terrorism.”