Meet the New Conservative Rising Star
Dr. Benjamin Carson is a neurosurgeon and foe of ObamaCare
By Evann Gastaldo, Newser Staff
Posted Mar 21, 2013 2:30 PM CDT
In this 2008 photo, President Bush presents medals to Dr. Benjamin Carson and retired Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor.   (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

(Newser) – Dr. Benjamin Carson, a renowned pediatric neurosurgeon, won over conservatives at the National Prayer Breakfast last month, where he criticized ObamaCare right in front of President Obama. Then he appeared at CPAC, where he fueled the fire of conservatives calling for him to run for president in 2016: "Let's just say if you magically put me in the White House..." he said, to cheers. Carson, whose fame has exploded as his prayer breakfast speech went viral on YouTube, has no political background but quite a compelling story: He rose from poverty in Detroit to become director of pediatric neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins, he has several books to his name, and Cuba Gooding Jr. once played him in a movie.

His latest book, America the Beautiful: Rediscovering What Made This Nation Great, has sold 46,000 copies since the speech. Appearances on Fox News have bolstered his popularity. But Carson won't identify himself as a Republican, though his views have turned decidedly conservative since his "flaming liberal" days in college, he tells the New York Times. He's religious and supports a flat tax, in which someone who makes $10 billion pays $1 billion and someone who makes $10 pays $1. But not all Carson's views are popular with the GOP: The Daily Caller, which calls him "a conservative star on the rise," reports that he did not support the invasions of either Iraq or Afghanistan.

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Mar 22, 2013 10:32 AM CDT
Political pundits need not worry or wonder. Carson is a thinking conservative, so he won't appeal to the hierarchy of the Tea Party-GOP. He won't follow the party line which puts political power ahead of common sense and the public good. Yes, he made a big flash by taking on the President at a National Prayer Breakfast -- so much for prayer -- and he had his 15-minutes of fame on FOX. Regardless of Carson's political affiliation, his speech had too much common sense for either the GOP or the Dems, not enough craziness for the Tea Party, and much too thoughful for the Libertarians! Too sad for the rest of us.
Mar 22, 2013 10:03 AM CDT
"He did not support the invasions of either Iraq or Afghanistan." Wow, imagine that, a conservative who actually lives up to the name!
Mar 22, 2013 7:03 AM CDT
I'm sure this guy's family NEVER used welfare or government assistance when he was growing up. Considering he is in the highest income tax bracket wouldn't he be FOR a flat tax: "making the income tax flat could result in a regressive overall tax structure. Under such a structure, those with lower incomes tend to pay a higher proportion of their income in total taxes than the affluent do. The fraction of household income that is a return to capital (dividends, interest, royalties, profits of unincorporated businesses) is positively correlated with total household income.[citation needed] Hence a flat tax limited to wages would seem to leave the wealthy better off" AND he's Black! See the GOP isn't racist because they have one black guy!