Barack Obama and wife Michelle are wrong to let daughters Sasha and Malia to listen to Beyoncé, potential White House candidate Mike Huckabee has claimed.

Huckabee, who failed to win the support from his Republican party for a 2008 tilt at the presidency, accused the commander in chief and wife Michelle Obama of double standards by sheltering them from some things but not Beyoncé, who he describes as "mental poison" in his new book.

Speaking to US magazine People, former Arkansas governor Huckabee said, "I don't understand how on one hand they can be such doting parents and so careful about the intake of everything — how much broccoli they eat and where they go to school ... and yet they don't see anything that might not be suitable", referring to Beyoncé's lyrics and choreography which Huckabee believes are "best left for the privacy of her bedroom".

It is not the first time Huckabee has courted controversy. Last year he was mocked for claiming women who use birth control "cannot control their libidos".