Dr. Ben Carson has won the presidential straw poll at the Southern Republican Leadership Conference in Oklahoma City. According to MSNBC, he went up against contenders such as Ted Cruz of Texas, Scott Walker of Wisconsin, and Chris Christie of New Jersey. Carson got 25.4 percent of the vote in the poll, while Walker got 20.5 percent, Cruz got 16.6 percent, and Christie got a dismal 5.3 percent. This is at least the third such straw poll he’s won this year.
Carson is a strong conservative, but he’s also very stupid and idiotic. He once said that being gay is a choice, because people go to prison straight and come out gay, so it’s obvious. In an interview with Chris Cuomo back in March, he showed a severe lack of understanding of things that happen to men in prison that have nothing to do with their sexual orientation.
Of course, someone like Carson can’t be expected to actually learn about anything that doesn’t fit his worldview. This particular scrap of idiocy also may not have much bearing on how Republicans see him, because, at least according to the straw poll, the two top priorities of people who voted were the economy and national security.
An article in The Huffington Post said that he would send the military in to destroy ISIS, instead of waiting for everyone else to decide what to do. Many conservatives—particularly the war hawks—are scared to death of ISIS, and have criticized Obama heavily for not sending in thousands of troops to destroy them already. Some have gone further, and criticized him for pulling out of Iraq – a move that they say gave rise to ISIS (going into Iraq in the first place is what caused this, and Iraq didn’t give Obama a choice about pulling out anyway).
On the economy, Carson is in line with conservatives on most things, but breaks with them on Wall Street. According to Bloomberg, Carson has a serious problem with a few people making millions upon millions, while everyday workers struggle. Of course, we hear that quite a bit from all over the political spectrum, but when it comes to action on that, lawmakers are so timid, it’s astounding. Would Carson be timid? Would he push as hard as he could for bringing back Glass-Steagall? Or would he fall down prostrate in front of the wealthy elite who help bankroll politicians?
He also wants to cut taxes and institute a 10 to 15 percent flat tax rate, something he believes is in line with the Bible. Conservatives still believe that if we could just cut taxes enough, everyone will finally prosper. They also like small government and tend to believe that the government makes the economy worse with “burdensome regulations.” Carson holds these views, too.
He hasn’t been very specific on policy proposals, but it’s a safe bet that he’ll fall in line with the hardliners on everything from war, to the national debt, to welfare, to religion. Perhaps it’s because he hasn’t really outlined anything, and just stated his general positions, that he’s popular right now. It could also be because he’s seen as coming from outside the Washington political machine, and therefore not (yet) subject to all the corruption there.
It could also simply be that he’s black, and can’t stand Obama, so obviously all this hatred directed at Obama from the right isn’t the least bit fueled by racism.
Regardless, this man is too crazy to be our president. Thankfully, this was a straw poll conducted of like-minded individuals, and not an actual caucus or vote.