Sept. 23–Dr. Ben Carson will bring his surging campaign to Michigan today with appearances with Republicans in Jackson and at nearby Spring Arbor University.
It will be the first time Carson, who grew up in Detroit, is back in Michigan since he announced his presidential aspirations in his hometown in May. For many voters, his political outsider status and his soft-spoken demeanor has proven to be a welcome antidote to the brash and bluster from New York businessman Donald Trump.
The most recent poll done in Michigan — a survey of 600 likely voters done earlier this month by Marketing Resource Group of Lansing — showed Carson leading the pack with 24%, followed by Donald Trump with 22%. And Carson was in the top three of a national CNN poll last week, finishing third with 14% behind the other two Republican political outsiders: Trump with 24% and California businesswoman Carly Fiorina with 15%.
But Carson also has gotten into trouble in the last week. On Sunday’s “Meet the Press,” Carson said a Muslim should not be president, even though the U.S. Constitution contains no religious eligibility test for president. The remark has gotten him into trouble with Muslims, Democrats and even some of his Republican rivals. But in Ohio Tuesday, Carson told reporters that his remarks were taken out of context and that the flap was fueled by the culture of political correctness in Washington.
Carson’s day in Michigan will begin with a meeting with Jackson County Republicans at 12:30 p.m., followed by a speech at Spring Arbor University, a small Christian university with about 4,000 students ,at 1:30 p.m.
His visit comes on the heels last weekend of the Michigan Republican Party’s Leadership Conference on Mackinac Island that attracted five other presidential candidates, including former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, Sens. Ted Cruz of Texas and Rand Paul of Kentucky, California businesswomanCarly Fiorina and Ohio Gov. John Kasich.
Contact Kathleen Gray: 517-372-8661, firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @michpoligal.