— -- Donald Trump acknowledged at Tuesday night’s presidential debate that he would be open to "closing" down parts of the Internet in order to squelch the recruitment efforts of the Islamic State.
CNN’s Wolf Blitzer, one of the moderators, asked Trump if he would be open to closing parts of the Internet even if that put the U.S. in the company of China and North Korea, which censor parts of the web.
“I would certainly be open to closing areas where we are at war with somebody," Trump said. "I sure as hell don't want to let people that want to kill us and kill our nation use our internet. Yes, sir. I am."
Trump’s argument for shutting down part of the Internet is that ISIS is recruiting through social media.
“ISIS is recruiting through the internet. ISIS is using the internet better than we are using the Internet and it was our idea,” Trump said Tuesday. “What I wanted to do is I wanted to get our brilliant people from Silicon Valley and other places and figure out a way that ISIS cannot do what they're doing.”
Later in the debate, he seemed to narrow his answer.
"We're not talking about closing the Internet. I'm talking about parts of Syria, parts of Iraq. Where ISIS is," Trump said. "Spotting it. Now, you could close it. What I like even better than that is getting our smartest and getting our best to infiltrate their Internet."
Boos erupted from the audience and Trump appeared to be surprised by the reaction.
"I just can't imagine somebody booing," he said. "These are people that want to kill us, folks. And you're objecting to us infiltrating their conversations? I don't think so."
Trump first made the suggestion to restricts parts of the Internet last Monday, when he first announced his policy to ban Muslims entering the U.S at a rally in South Carolina.