(CNN) – A day after a GOP presidential debate, White House hopeful Ron Paul upbraided rival candidate Michele Bachmann for disliking Muslims.
"She hates Muslims," Paul said on NBC's "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno" on Friday. "She wants to go get 'em."
Paul failed to elaborate further. His remarks follow his heated exchange with Bachmann during Thursday night's debate when the two argued about Iran's nuclear development program.
Paul strongly disputed Bachmann's claim that Iran was "within just months" of developing a nuclear bomb and blasted U.S. sanctions against Iran as an "act of war."
A staunch non-interventionist, Paul urged the government to use diplomats to resolve the situation.
Bachmann, in response, ripped into Paul's position, describing it as one that seriously underestimates Iran's intentions.
"I think I have never heard a more dangerous answer for American security than the one that we just heard from Ron Paul," Bachmann said, receiving wide applause.
The International Atomic Energy Agency released a 14-page report on Nov. 8 concluding there were "credible" and "serious concerns regarding possible military dimensions to Iran's nuclear program."
Both candidates continued to argue about the issue, creating one of the most intense moments of the night.
Bachmann pointed to the Iranian constitution, saying the Islamic republic's "mission is to extend jihad across the world and eventually to set up a worldwide caliphate."
She added: "We would be fools and knaves to ignore their purpose and their plan."
Paul quickly fired back, saying he, too, didn't want to see Iran with a nuclear weapon. But he said that Bachmann was portraying a skewed view of the Muslim world.
"To declare war on 1.2 billion Muslims and say all Muslims are the same, this is dangerous talk," Paul said. "Yeah, there are some radicals, but they don't come here to kill us because we're free and prosperous."
Responding to Paul's answer on "The Tonight Show," Bachmann on Saturday said his statement was "outrageous."
"Of course I don't hate Muslims. That's an absolutely outrageous statement. What I love are Americans and the American people," she said at a campaign stop in Iowa.
She went on to claim that the "true hatred" was coming from Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who in 2005 quoted a remark from Ayatollah Khomeini, founder of Iran's Islamic revolution, that Israel "must be wiped out from the map of the world."
"As Commander-in-Chief I will stand for the safety and security of the American people. I think, quite frankly, with all due respect to my colleague, that Ron Paul would make a very dangerous president because he doesn't understand this threat," she said.
Paul's answer about Bachmann on Leno's show Friday night came amid a lightning round of questions from the TV host, who asked Paul to comment on each of his presidential rivals.
The Texas congressman gave a similar answer when Leno mentioned former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum, a strong social conservative who frequently takes a strong conservative stance on gay rights.
Paul said Santorum doesn't like "gay people and Muslims."
And as for the current front-runners, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, Paul gained laughs when he said the two candidates should go back to their old jobs.
– CNN's Chris Welch contributed to this report.
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Yeah muslims suck. But so do women.
yep paul is right. We americans love muslims. Even though the people belong to this community/religion bombed our embassies / blew up our ships killing our soldiers/ try to blow up our planes on christmas / blasted world trade center / bombed pentagon – hey still we love muslims, dont we? Americans are very intelligent!!!!
Bachmann loves the American people...unless they are democrats, liberals, moderates, rinos, independents, or pretty much anyone else who isn't a member of the so called "tea party." But those people aren't really Americans she would say.
Always use diplomacy first. And sometimes as a last resort we will still have to do a smackdown – only as a last resort, and only when there is true risk to life and limb if left unchecked. Please note I didn't say economic risk, and I didn't specify US risk. We should not risk genocide by trying to stay diplomatic.
I agree with Paul regarding his statements about Bachmann and Santorum. I will never in my life vote for people like them.
Bachmann doesn't hate Muslims....she's scared to death of them. She's a coward that wants Uncle Sam to fight her battles for her. She also doesn't hate gays but she's scared to death that Marcus is gay and she wants that cured.
I love this guy.... He has ball and telling the truth... first time in american history....he has my vote....
Go Ron ...... go Ron......go Ron
This is news? Michelle Bachmann hates Muslims? Of *course* she does. She is trying to appeal to the lowest, most base denominator possible. As far as I'm concerned, the woman is about 2 eyelashes away from being a Fascist.
When did Ron Paul endorse Bachmann and Santorum? Oh, he didn't? Because, for a large chuck of the Republican primary voters, "hating Muslims" and "hating gays" are practically requisites for the presidency.
Thank you Ron Paul for figuring out what most voters figured out... YEARS ago. Bachmann hates a lot more than just Muslims,and Santorum, well, he's just an anti-gay, anti-anyone-who-isn't-like-him idiot. We need a lot more insight and leadership than any of these bozos can muster.
Tell it like it is Ron Paul. He said a lot more during the Tonight Show interview, like cut foreign aid completely– which is right on. It seems like we blow all our money in foreign countries and end up just getting hate back. I know the whole cheap oil isn't working because we're paying twice for gas than we were four years ago. I don't care if it's Iran, Pakistan or Israel, keep the funds at home and let's invest in America again.
Michelle, Perry, Newt hate Muslims; it is true. Tea Baggers hate Muslims. Mr. Paul please tell us something we don't know.
Nice to see someone running for the elections that actually has a brain. Youll be getting my vote Ron Paul
Leno was awesome last night! That was Ron Paul's best interview yet! Somebody actually let him elaborate on a whole bunch of issues. The next guest up came out in a Ron Paul T Shirt! The whole crowd was roaring. That was super cool!!! They have the video clip at ronpaulflix on facebook.
I'm not a Paul supporter per se, but he's dead on in this instance..and he has the guts to say it.
Bachman is getting desperate. She plays fast and loose with the facts and usually doesn't get them right. She'll say or do anything to try to get elected. She still doesn't seem to know she's not electable. Scary.
I hate muslims as much as the next crazy conservative but we don't need to waste more money killing people thousands of miles away. I could careless about Israel, they get enough money from us and should deal with it themselves.
I watched this interview last night and can't decide if Ron Paul is an Andy (of Mayberry).....or a Barney ;-)
I also don't think Michelle Bachman is alone in her 'feelings' toward Muslims. 9/11 says it all.
ron paul gas my vote. i dont want my kids in a war hungry country that angers extremists by bombing their families. my kids are much safer under a paul administration. insteadof being poor and spread out we would be wise and powerful protecting our own soil. aggression attracts a fight. th occupy movement should get behind ron paul... take care of ourselves for freedom. if you want any change this guy is the only hope ron paul foe sanity and safety.
ornery lovers of America, who tell it like it is; go PAUL!!!!!
Today, Michele Bachman replied, "No, I don't hate Muslims!" She then went on to clarify. "What I do like to do is blow stuff up. It's quite lovely. Pretty light. Wonderful explosions." Bachman then cracked a big smile, winked and said, "Any way we can keep the American people in fear and the war machine churning. It's Awesome!!!" Asked about how the United States would pay for a "new, and improved" war with Iran, Michele replied, "The way we've always paid for it, stupid. DAH!!!"
Now I want to vote for Bachmann.
Bachmann hates muslims? Looks like I finally found a candidate worth voting for.
Ron Paul is a delusional idiot.
Ron Paul is up there speaking truth to power to his opponents, the Republican party, and viewers. I am amazed and proud that one person in this entire country can repeatedly get on TV and has the balls to actually speak with as much commonsense and clarity as this man has. Everyone else is up there giving their Christmas list of things they would like to spend $5 Trillion on, and I dont have the faintest idea where this money is going to come from and neither do they.
Michele Bachmann should restrain from sounding like the "crazies" on cable tv and the radio. She loses when she starts talking about caliphate and all that rubbish; she is running to be the US president and she should focus on that and immediate needs of the country