A pastor with ties to Republican Presidential hopeful Ted Cruz has claimed that Girl Scouts leaders should be drowned because they’re too pro-gay.

The comments were made by Colorado evangelical pastor turned random headline generator Kevin Swanson.

Presidential hopeful Ted Cruz ducked calls to condemn Swanson, after he shared a stage with the pastor who called for homosexuals to be put to death.

Minutes before being warmly embraced by Cruz, Swanson had shouted: “Yes, Leviticus calls for the death penalty for homosexuals… I am not ashamed!”

However, it turns out it’s not just the gays that Swanson wishes death on, after he lashed out at the LGBT-accepting Girl Scouts this week.

Speaking on his radio show, he said: “You don’t gain friends by exposing the Girl Scouts, it’s an American icon… people aren’t going to be all that impressed with you taking a stand against an organisation that promotes lesbianism and abortion and contraception for 14-year-old girls.

“You don’t gain friends doing this kind of thing… I know that! But I don’t care. I really don’t care.

“But we take Matthew 18:6 very seriously – our lord Jesus said in no uncertain terms – if somebody offends one of these little ones who believe in me, it would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck and he be drowned at the bottom of the sea.”

He said: “The Mafia treatment – one of Jesus’ most serious statements made in all of his ministry. Jesus means it.

“When you offend one of these little ones… when you set them before mentors who happen to be homosexuals, or movies that promote homosexuality, or organisations that promote homosexuality – when you offend one of these little ones, it would be better if a millstone were hung around your neck and you be drowned at the bottom of the sea.

“Jesus means what he says – you’ve got to take what he says, and you have to apply it.”

Elsewhere on the show, Mr Swanson refers to outlets including PinkNews as the “gay Borg”, a seeming reference to Star Trek.

We are surprised Star Trek is allowed in the Swanson house, given he told parents to drown children rather than let them read Harry Potter – but then, maybe Mr Swanson just has strong literary opinions.