Ben Carson Lashes Out At CNN's Camerota For Clarifying His Remarks That Without Fox News “We Would Be Cuba”

Carson: “Are You Honestly Telling Me That You Didn't Know What I Was Talking About ... If You Are, You Might Fit In That Category” Of Stupid People

From the November 6 edition of CNN's New Day:

Video file

ALISYN CAMEROTA:  I want to move on and ask you about a videotape of you from last year that has just surfaced. It's been uncovered by the magazine Mother Jones. And it's you giving a speech at the Nixon Presidential Library in which you talk about liberals trying to take over the country. And you talk about your impression of some Americans. So let me play a little clip of that. 


CAMEROTA: So that was obviously a punch line. That got a big joke. But who were you referring to? Which Americans do you think are stupid? 

CARSON: The people -- particularly a lot of the people who don't realize what they're doing. For instance, those people who take the disadvantaged people in our country and they say, you poor little thing, I'm going to give you everything that you possibly need, not recognizing that what that is really doing is keeping those people in a dependent position. That's not helping those people. And all you have to do is look at what's happened since, you know, the Great Society programs of Lyndon Johnson. We spent $19 trillion and we have ten times more people on food stamps, more people in poverty, more broken homes, out of wedlock births, crime, incarceration. Everything is not only worse, it's much worse. You have to be kind of stupid to look at that and not realize that that's a failure and to say we just didn't do enough of it. That's what I call stupid. 

CAMEROTA: So, just to be clear, people who support food stamps or Medicaid or welfare. 

CARSON: I didn't say that. Now you're trying to put words in my mouth. 

CAMEROTA: No, I'm trying to clarify. 

CARSON: Why do you do that? Listen to what I just told you. 

CAMEROTA: I want to clarify, Dr. Carson, because I think what you're saying are liberals. 

CARSON:  I can't believe that you used to work on Fox, and you've turned into that -- I can't believe it.

CAMEROTA: I'm glad you brought that up, Dr. Carson. Because you also said something about Fox News that I'd like to play from that very same speech. Let's play that clip about your thoughts on Fox News.


CAMEROTA: Now, as you point out, I did work at Fox for many years. And do I have many friends there still who are excellent journalists. But I'm not sure that even they think that without their reporting that we would be Cuba. You mean that if Fox News didn't exist, we would be a communist country?

CARSON: No. Again, there you go with sensationalism. That's what you try to do. And you hope that somehow that will resonate with people who don't think for themselves. 

CAMEROTA: Dr. Carson, you said it. I'm actually quoting you. 

CARSON: People are a lot smarter than they think you are and they know exactly what I'm talking about. 

CAMEROTA: Dr. Carson, I'm quoting -- I'm not even quoting you, I'm playing your words. You are the person who said there are a lot of people who are stupid and that without Fox News we would be Cuba.

CARSON: Are you honestly telling me that you didn't know what I was talking about when I said that? Are you honestly telling me that -- because if you are, you might fit in that category. 

CAMEROTA: Dr. Carson, I really don't know what you're talking about. Fox News came to dominance in 2001. You think before 2001 the U.S. was a communist country? 

CARSON: That's not what I said. But that's what you love to do. Why do you do that?  What I am saying -- listen, let me explain it to you. What I am saying is that the general mainstream media all seems to move in the secular progressive direction. And you know they would like to create a narrative that certain things are good and certain things are bad, according to the way that they see them. And by being able to be the bully pulpit, so to speak, and to be the only voice that's out there, you can get a lot of people to start thinking the way that you do. Now, along comes Fox News and presents an alternative, a different way of thinking. And if we didn't have that counterbalance, I wish we didn't need that counterbalance. Because the way it's supposed to work is that the media is supposed to be neutral, and they're supposed to be on the side of the people. And that is the reason that they -- the only business that is protected by the United States Constitution. But because they have become very partisan and very ideological, you need to have a counterbalance. And that's what I mean, having Fox come in to counterbalance what you've done. Some others have come in and joined since that time. It's good that they have but it's unfortunate that that has to happen. 


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