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Friday, January 1, 2016

GOP campaign financing: Part 2

   Photo credit: losangeles.cbslocal.com

GOP campaign financing: Part 2 ~ Dr. Ben Carson
Up until today, a look at Dr. Ben Carson’s fundraising showed a campaign burning through lots of cash, with a campaign structure that was less than transparent. Both Politico and The Atlantic covered some of these aspects.  
But with the news today that the Carson campaign has lost top staff and up to as many as 20 staffers, those issues may be academic. From ABC News via Conservative Treehouse
ABC News has more –  After announcing his resignation from the Ben Carson campaign, former campaign manager Barry Bennett tells ABC News that the staff changes were revealed in a scheduled call this morning. The main change Carson wanted to make was with his Communications Director Doug Watts, Bennett says.
Bennett told the Republican presidential candidate on the call he would not support that decision and told Carson “it’s time for me to go.” Bennett said Carson was surprised and asked him to think about staying on as his campaign manager to which Bennett quickly told him no.
“[Carson] tried to blame some of the problems in the campaign on silly things and I said Ben we all know the root of our problems, let’s not pretend it’s not Armstrong Williams,” Bennett told ABC News on the phone. “Ben said I’ll talk to him, I’ll talk to him. But I’ve heard that for nine months now.”
Who is Armstrong Williams? According to a report last August on The Hill:
One of the most influential people in Ben Carson’s political orbit has no role in his actual campaign. 
Armstrong Williams, 56, is a black conservative radio personality, a real estate investor, TV station owner, publisher and former political operative for figures as diverse as the late Sen. Strom Thurmond (R-S.C.) and Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas.
Williams does not fit the traditional profile of a man-behind-the-candidate, yet he looms over the 2016 hopeful's world. 
In interviews with Carson, as well as top current and former campaign officials, the message is clear: Carson and Williams come as one.
. . .
Williams’s forceful personality is in stark contrast to that of Carson's, who has an other-worldly calm. He has been known to step in as Carson’s enforcer when the presidential candidate would rather eschew confrontation. He has a reputation as a fixer.
Armstrong Williams, Ben Carson’s business manager and advisor said the neurosurgeon “is the only true authentic Evangelical Christian in the race.”
Oddly enough then, the cause of the resignations may relate to Williams’s support of Louis Farrakhan and the Nation of Islam, as per a blog at American Thinker titled “Support of Farrakhan organization may force Ben Carson to separate from longtime adviser".
For background on Chris Christie’s fund-raising, posted earlier on this blogsite, go here.

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