Ben Carson Would Give 'Serious Consideration' to White House Run

Wednesday, 21 May 2014 05:15 PM

By Sean Piccoli

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It's not the job he wants, but it may be the job his country needs him to seek, Dr. Ben Carson said of the presidency in a visit with Newsmax TV on Wednesday.

"It continues to be something that I don't want to do, but I also recognize that our country is in an enormous amount of difficulty," Carson, a pediatric neurosurgeon, columnist, author, and rising conservative star, told "America's Forum" hosts J.D. Hayworth and John Bachman.

"And if there were a lot of Americans — I mean a lot — who really thought that I should do that, I would have to give it serious consideration," he said.

Story continues below video.

President of the Carson Scholars Fund and chairman of the anti-Obamacare Save Our Healthcare Project, Carson also discussed his long-game view of politics and his controversial support for Monica Wehby — a pro-choice Republican running for U.S. Senate in Oregon.

Carson, who riled President Barack Obama with unscripted remarks at last year's National Prayer Breakfast, is making rounds that could signal White House ambitions of his own: He's talking up his new book, a compendium of political policy and personal creed called "One Nation: What We Can All Do to Save America's Future."

Carson said he wrote "One Nation" to re-establish "that we the American people are not each other's enemies."

"We're natural allies," he said, "but we've allowed ourselves to be manipulated by those forces that drive wedges into every possible crack to create a war — gender wars, race wars and income wars and age wars," he said.

The goal being "to keep people at each other's throats, direct them away from the things that are important — things like the economy, the national debt, our casting away of our moral values and the things that allow us to have an identity," he said.

So what would it take to persuade Carson, who's the object of at least one draft movement, to run?

Insisting it's "a little bit early" to contemplate 2016, Carson also said, "We have to see what happens in November" with the midterm elections. He also suggested conservatives who sense America's need for a major course correction won't necessarily have to pin their hopes on one person.

If interest in him fades, said Carson, and another candidate emerges who "is speaking the language that people want to hear and can identify with ... that would be somebody that I can get behind, too."

Carson used his column this week to explain, and defend, backing the pro-choice Wehby in Oregon as navigating "a course between principle and pragmatism."

"I always say if two people agree about everything, one of them isn't necessary," Carson said  Wednesday as a follow-up to the column. "But what conservatives have to understand is, if they take the attitude after the primary, 'My candidate didn't win; I'm taking my marbles and going home,' they're playing right into the plan of the progressive movement.

"We have to be smarter than that," he said, "and the fact of the matter is, if we take somebody who agrees with us most of the time so that we can gain power, we have the ability to sort out whatever other small differences exist after that.

"But if you never get into position to be able to do anything, then, as Hillary would say, what difference does it make? You know, we're not going to get there, we've got to get there first."

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