Ben Carson: Immigrants come to U.S. in search of free "goodies"

Conservative pundit appeals to GOP's xenophobic base ahead of potential 2016 presidential run

Published November 24, 2014 7:30PM (EST)

  (Reuters/Mike Theiler)
(Reuters/Mike Theiler)

Ben Carson, the neurosurgeon-turned-conservative pundit who's currently weighing a bid for the Republican presidential nomination in 2016, thinks many immigrants come to the U.S. in search of free "goodies."

Over the weekend, Carson spoke before a group of evangelical voters in Iowa, which holds the nation's first presidential caucuses and where social conservatives hold considerable sway in the GOP. Speaking with Bloomberg Politics' John McCormick after his speech, Carson said that the five million immigrants affected by President Barack Obama's recently-announced deportation relief should be denied free services like education, health care, and housing, at least until they become citizens.

“You have to reverse the polarity of the magnet that is attracting people here,” Carson said. “All the goodies, you just turn those off. Then, you seal the border.”

If he proceeds with a presidential bid, Carson will easily rank among the most stridently conservative Republican contenders. He dubs abortion a form of "human sacrifice," has compared homosexuality with bestiality and pedophilia, and does not accept the theory of evolution, despite being a medical doctor.

And Carson doesn't just want to gut social programs for immigrants. He has called for the abolition of Medicare and Medicaid and advocated the replacement of welfare programs with the whims of private charity.

By Luke Brinker

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