After making a rousing speech at a conference for conservative US voters, neurosurgeon Ben Carson joked about poison in the wedding cakes of same-sex couples.
Held in Des Moines, Iowa on 24 January, the conference offered potential presidential candidates an opportunity to show voters why they should carry the Republican mantle in 2016.
In the question and answer period with reporters, Carson attacked marriage equality, using wedding cakes as an example.
‘What I have a problem with is when people try to force people to act against their beliefs because they say "they’re discriminating against me,"’ Carson said, according to The Hill.
‘So they can go right down the street and buy a cake, but no, let’s bring a suit against this person because I want them to make my cake even though they don’t believe in it,’ he continued. ‘Which is really not all that smart because they might put poison in that cake.’
The Hill reports the joke earned some chuckles from his staff and ‘dead silence from the journalists in the room.’
Carson’s opposition to marriage rights is well known.
Last November he charged the LGBTI community’s push for marriage is an attempt to ‘redefine’ everything.
‘I find it difficult sometimes to understand why ministers are willing to abandon the scripture to go along and get along,’ he said.
‘People everywhere from politicians down to the lowliest person in our society… are terrified,’ he maintained.