Republicans must denounce Ben Carson for saying that he does not think a Muslim should become president, "Morning Joe" host Joe Scarborough argued Tuesday.
"It's a problem until somebody strong in the Republican Party stands up and speaks out about it," Scarborough said. "Stop being milquetoast, Republicans, to your base. They like toughness. They like people who have balls. They like people who fight back."
Carson, a neurosurgeon who is running for president, made his controversial comments on NBC's "Meet the Press" Sunday.
“I would not advocate that we put a Muslim in charge of this nation. I absolutely would not agree with that,” Carson said.
His remarks generated outcry from Muslim groups, as well as anyone who remembers the country was founded on principles of religious freedom and pluralism.
Some members of the crowded GOP field have criticized Carson's comments. Carly Fiorina pointed out on "The Tonight Show" that "it says in our Constitution that religion cannot be a test for office." Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and Sens. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) condemned Carson as well.
"America is an idea, not owned by a particular religion," Graham said on Twitter.
But Scarborough wants to see a stronger response from the candidates and the GOP as a whole.
"Stop withering in the corner or you're going to end up like Scott Walker," he said, referencing the Wisconsin governor who suspended his presidential campaign on Monday.
Watch the full clip above.