Mike Huckabee thinks Syrian refugees aren't fleeing 'tyranny' -- they're just looking for 'cable TV'
Mike Huckabee (CBS News)

Mike Huckabee thinks it's "judicial tyranny" to order a county clerk to follow a court ruling that extends marriage equality rights to same-sex couples, but he's not sure Syrians are fleeing the brutal "tyranny" of Islamic State militants.

The former Arkansas governor and Republican presidential candidate accused Syrian refugees of having "nefarious" or perhaps merely trivial reasons for fleeing the civil war that has devastated their home country, reported the Washington Post.

"Are they really escaping tyranny, are they escaping poverty, or are they really just coming because we've got cable TV?" Huckabee asked Monday during an event at the conservative Eagle Forum. "I don't meant to be trite. I'm just saying, we don't know."

Huckabee falsely claimed that Saudi Arabia had offered to build 600 mosques for Muslim migrants and refugees who travel to the U.S. or Europe, when in fact, the Islamic nation had offered to build one mosque in Germany for every 100 refugees.

"I've got a better idea," Huckabee suggested. "Why doesn't Saudi Arabia host them, and we will send some assistance through our charitable organizations for some hospitals and schools? We will design the curriculum for those schools. They won't be madrassas to teach terrorism."

The conservative Christian politician said the United States had no moral obligation to shelter Syrian refugees, but should instead be more concerned about preserving its sovereignty from Muslim immigrants.

"That's not a lack of Christian charity," Huckabee insisted. "It's the essence of charity, to provide for needs, but not to put your own children at risk, if what you're importing could be people who have a nefarious purpose for wanting to be here."