WASHINGTON (CBSDC) — Dr. Ben Carson is raising money for a potential 2016 White House run.
Speaking to Fox News’ “The O’Reilly Factor” on Tuesday, the retired pediatric neurosurgeon from Johns Hopkins Hospital said that he has been raising funds for himself and other candidates through a super PAC.
“We’ve started the USA First PAC to do exactly that, but also to raise funds to help other candidates,” Carson stated. “I think if we don’t have a significant impact in November of this year, we’re going to have lost the race so we really need to have a big impact now.
Carson, who has never held political office, resoundingly won the Polk County, Iowa Republican Party Dinner Straw Poll over the weekend, taking in 62 percent of the vote. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, came in second at 7 percent. If he decides to run, Carson believes that his lack of political experience won’t hurt him with voters.
“There’s no question that I haven’t spent a lot of time in government, but it doesn’t mean you can’t make sure you have people around you who have spent that time,” Carson explained to Fox News. “I think the thing that is actually more important is wisdom and understanding and knowing how to use facts.”
The world-renowned doctor then compared working with people in government to conducting surgery.
“When I conducted some very complex operations, including things that hadn’t been done before, it required pulling people together, some of whom knew a lot of things that I didn’t know about different areas, but being able to coordinate those things and merge them into something that was successful,” Carson stated.
Speaking about the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, the terror group that recently beheaded American journalist James Foley, Carson said it was time to stop playing with ISIS.
“When you’re dealing with an organization like ISIS whose stated goal is to destroy you you can’t play with them. You can’t just drive them back into their little hole and let them regroup and come back out. You have to have a philosophy that you’re going to get rid of them and you have to use the means that are necessary in order to do that. You can’t play games,” Carson told Fox News.
Justin Holmes, an assistant professor of political science at University of Northern Iowa, believes Carson could do well in Iowa, but feels his lack of political experience will hurt him nationally.
“I think that’s a huge problem,” Holmes told The Daily Iowan. “It’s one thing to be a smart guy, and it’s another to be somebody who has a record.”
Supporters have started a National Draft Ben Carson for President Committee to raise awareness of Carson’s presidential qualifications and to get a grassroots movement started for a potential campaign.