Ben Carson’s inflammatory comments about Muslims, illegal immigration, mass shooting victims and Jews during the Holocaust have caused his poll numbers to surge.
Speaking to the New York Times, the Republican presidential candidate’s business manager, Armstrong Williams, said Carson used to heed the advice of advisers who told him to tone down his statements. But he has now decided to double down on recent controversial comments that advisers feared “could be a game changer for him, and not in a good way.”
“He would listen to others and abandon sometimes what he feels deep down. But for the last two weeks he has said, ‘No,'” Williams explained.
“He came alive,” Williams continued as he discussed Carson’s momentum following his comment that a Muslim shouldn’t be president, which resulted in mass backlash, but a surge in media coverage, grassroots support and poll numbers. Carson is six points behind GOP frontrunner Donald Trump in a new CBS News poll and seven points ahead of Trump in an IPP/TIPP poll.
“He has not backed down from that moment,” Williams concluded.
Carson’s latest controversial comments suggested that if more Jews were armed during the Holocaust, there wouldn’t have been mass genocide. The Anti-Defamation League criticized his statements as “historically innacurate.”
In an interview with TheWrap, American University history professor Leonard Steinhorn also ripped Carson.
“Carson has a history of making intemperate and ill-informed statements. Shame on the press for covering only the horse race and not constantly reminding us of the more outrageous statements some candidates make — and what that says about their worldview.”