Illustration for article titled Ben Carson Is Back With More Delightfully Halfhearted Trump Defenses

Ben Carson, a sleepy, disoriented owl who can’t quite recall how he ended up in your cedar closet, will always be on hand to defend his good friend Donald J. Trump. Unfortunately for Trump, “defend” is a strong word for what has been happening here.


Carson—who has previously deployed the encouraging arguments “Are there better people? Probably,” and “He has some major defects, there’s no question about it”—claimed to Politico that following Trump’s racist remarks about a Mexican judge (remarks Trump has said were “misconstrued”), the presumptive Republican nominee “fully recognized that that was not the right thing to say.”

From Politico:

But Carson, the most prominent African American in Trump’s orbit, says Trump is just spilling his unfiltered thoughts, not displaying latent racism. “He was probably talking out loud rather than thinking. That’s not a good thing to do when everything you say is going to be analyzed,” he said.

Carson agreed that an ill-considered comment by a president can move financial markets or create instability in the world, and Trump, he said, is beginning to recognize it as well. “He’s coming to that understanding,” Carson said. “I think he will change it, by necessity — just the natural evolution of moving from the primary to the main event is going to necessitate a change.”

Ah, yes. Talking out loud rather than thinking. Not a good thing to do. He will change it. Like a very light drizzle that may just be a leaking air conditioner, Carson’s comments in favor of Trump are confusing, ineffectual, and easily forgotten. But wait, there’s more!

Carson said these wary Republicans should line up behind Trump anyway.

“You know what I say to people who say that? I say, what’s the alternative?” Carson told POLITICO. “Look at where we are as a nation right now. We are moving full speed ahead on the progressive train, heading off the cliff. I mean, somebody 30 years ago, if you tried to describe America today, they would say, ‘get out of here.’ Are we going to continue on that train? Or do we want to get back to the more traditional values.”


If you think Ben Carson is bad at being a Trump surrogate, just listen to him try to understand the passage of time. Yet unlike the good old folks of 1986, Carson claims that Trump is very good at processing new ideas:

Carson said Trump’s best attribute as his ability to digest “new information.”

“He’s able to process it very, very quickly and make a determination about whether that’s something that needs to be acted upon,” he said. “I’m very impressed every time I’m with him and he gets new information and how quickly he can process it and cut to the chase. He knows how to make a decision.”


What excellent news for his pre-school application.

Image via Getty.

Ellie is a freelance writer and former senior writer at Jezebel. She is pursuing a master's degree in science journalism at Columbia University in the fall.

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