If you’re a regular The Root reader, you already know that I’m fairly skeptical about the prospects of a 2016 presidential run by current Fox News contributor and retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson. If not, read here, here, here, here and here.
My basic takeaway is that Carson—the first surgeon to successfully separate twins conjoined at the head—is an engaging figure but somewhat ill suited to politics.
And that has increasingly come into focus in the last couple of weeks, with Carson offering a fairlytone-deaf response to Newsmax TV’s Steve Malzberg a few weeks ago about the Ray Rice controversy, and Carson’s unusually flat appearance on this week’s installment of Fox News Sunday. Carson recently told syndicated radio host Hugh Hewitt that chances are “reasonably good” that he’ll throw his hat in the 2016 ring, but to my mind, there are a few reasons that his potential candidacy increasingly seems like it might not generate a lot of steam.
The Field Is Catching Up
When “Carson for president” talk really started bubbling up, the GOP was still in a tailspin over losing two national elections in a row to Obama. But Republicans are slowly starting to get excited about some of their candidates. Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky is skewing toward younger, conservatarian primary voters; it’s being widely reported that many Republicans want Mitt Romney to try again; and even New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie has started bouncing back from the bridge-gate scandal. In that context, the demand for an outside-the-box pick on the right is becoming less clear.