Iowa Freedom Summit  ...Next >
January 24, 2015--Dr. Ben Carson presented himself as an advocate of common sense solutions.  He asked, "Do we have a brain?  Do we have the ability to think logically to solve the multiple problems that we have?"  Carson told his inspiring, now oft-repeated story of growing up raised by a single mom, and of the importance of education in his life.  Carson devoted as much attention to immigration as any of the potential candidates, declaring, "[W]hoever wins in 2016--I'm pretty sure it's going be a Republican--I think they should make it their goal to seal that border within a year."  Additionally, he cited Canada's guest worker program as an example of an approach that works.  Carson lambasted Obamacare, saying it doesn't work and that he would oppose it even if it did work, because a person's health care should not be put in the hands of the government.  Carson also suggested that "we cut down on the size of government by attrition," specifically by not replacing federal government employees who retire for four or five years.  [transcript]
According to the Des Moines Register Carson was to do a private breakfast downtown before his speech at the Summit.  At the beginning of his speech, Carson acknowledged his wife Candy "out there somewhere" in the audience.

When speaking Carson sometimes holds his hands raised in front of him, almost as if to remind people of his background as a surgeon.  He often appears to be talking with his eyes closed or looking down. 

Although Carson is an experienced speaker (represented by the Washington Speakers Bureau), and although he acquired a reputation from directly challenging President Obama at the National Prayer Breakfast, he idoes have a somewhat subdued speaking style, and his speech at the Summit did not stand out particularly. 

It was somewhat surprising that the National Draft Ben Carson for President Committee, which is apparently very well organized in the state--it announced county chairs for all 99 counties on Oct. 20, 2014--did not more of a visible presence in connection with the Summit.  It is true that signs were not allowed in, but one might have expected to see some kind of show of support.
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