Republican presidential candidate Senator Marco Rubio of Florida sparked controversy on Wednesday when he said he’d like to have a beer with Malala.
When asked who he’d like to have a beer with outside of the political world, Rubio said, “Malala!”
Rubio was asked the question during a question-and-answer session for “young professionals” at St Anselm College in New Hampshire.
Malala, a Muslim teenager and underage for drinking in the US, famously defied the Taliban’s ban on female education in Pakistan, demanding that girls be allowed to attend schools. She was shot in the head by Taliban gunmen in 2012 but survived the attack.
Malala was nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize in 2013 and 2014, making her the youngest person to receive a Nobel Peace Prize. Drinking alcohol is considered unlawful by most Muslims, and purchasing alcohol is illegal for Muslims in Pakistan.
Many took to Twitter to express their disbelief at Rubio’s comment.
This article originally appeared on IB Times.