Update – 3/4, 5:38 p.m. EST: CNBC is reporting that Ben Carson has officially suspended his presidential campaign.
BREAKING: Ben Carson formally suspends campaign, after saying Wed. he did not see path forward for his campaign pic.twitter.com/BWgQ70ZGzY
— CNBC Now (@CNBCnow) March 4, 2016
Republican presidential candidate Dr. Ben Carson announced in a statement Wednesday that he will not be attending the GOP debate on Thursday evening in Detroit and has no “political path forward” after a poor showing at the polls on Super Tuesday.
As late as Nov. 2015, Carson rivaled Donald Trump in the national polls but a series of rhetorical and internal campaign blunders led to the soft-spoken candidate’s demise.
“Assuming it’s going to be like the last couple of debates there’s not much point [of being there],” Carson said in an interview with Sinclair Broadcasting Group. “You know people are just more fascinated with . . . the coliseum mentality in ancient Rome. You know the society is crumbling around them and everybody just wants to go to the coliseum and see the lions tear people’s heads off . . . It’s almost like they’re in a stupor and it’s hard to wake them up.”
While voluntarily stepping away from the spotlight on Thursday, Dr. Carson has not officially suspended his campaign but will make an announcement as to his future plans Friday at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Washington, D.C.
Dr. Carson started to gain national attention after giving a fascinating speech at the annual National Prayer Breakfast meeting in 2013, which touched on everything from political correctness, to the “moral decay” and “fiscal responsibility” of a declining world super-power and the “dumbing down” of America. President Obama was seated directly to Dr. Carson’s right when he delivered the remarks.
After Super Tuesday’s results started to come in, Dr. Carson addressed his supporters in Baltimore and lamented the foul nature of national politics. “As I’ve had an opportunity to study our system, it has become a little bit discouraging seeing all the relationships that exist there,” Carson said Tuesday. “It is rotten to the core on both sides, Democrats and Republicans . . . they’ve weaved such a complex web, it will be very, very difficult to untangle it.”
According to one of Dr. Carson’s closest advisers — Armstrong Williams — the retired neurosurgeon will not endorse any of the other presidential candidates, “but will support the eventual [GOP] nominee.”
[Sinclair Broadcasting Group] [Yahoo News] [Politico]