Ben Carson and Allen West Look to Rally Conservatives as 2016 Beckons
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Two African-American Republicans with eyes on 2016 will be taking center stage as conservatives convene in Denver later this month. Both former U.S. Rep. Allen West, R-Fla., and Dr. Ben Carson will be speaking at the Western Conservative Summit which will be held in Denver from July 18-20.
Despite losing to U.S. Rep. Patrick Murphy, D-Fla., in 2012, West has remained politically active, backing candidates through his Allen West Guardian Fund PAC and leaving the door open to an electoral comeback in 2016. West has expressed some interest in running for the Republican presidential nomination in 2016 but he has also said he would look at running for the U.S. Senate if U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., opts not to run for a second term.
In recent days, West has been calling for the impeachment of President Barack Obama. Last week, West informed supporters than he had heard from more than 130,000 Americans and had gathered more than 100,000 signatures.
“This is our moment,” West insisted. “We're leading a grassroots revolution to defend our Constitution and take our country back from the liberals who are destroying this great nation piece by piece.
“Barack Obama is guilty of high crimes and misdemeanors and brazenly disregarding the Constitution of the United States,” West added. “I took a lifetime oath to defend this country -– and that includes defending it from Barack Obama."
Carson also offered a warm-up pitch for 2016 last week. While making a pitch for the Washington Times where he writes a weekly column, Carson contrasted today’s culture with when he grew up and offered a stark view of what young people currently face.
Carson, a prominent neurosurgeon who entered the political realm in 2013 when he criticized President Barack Obama’s federal health-care law at the National Prayer Breakfast, has increasingly shown signs of running for the Republican presidential nomination in 2016. After retiring from Johns Hopkins Hospital in Maryland, Carson, who was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian honor, is now based out of West Palm Beach.
“America is the land of dreams and it has fulfilled the dreams of so many people from so many places,” Carson emailed conservatives on Wednesday. “As a child, I dreamt of becoming a doctor. And by working hard, embracing my mother's values, and seizing opportunity, I was able to become a neurosurgeon. But I worry that today's generations have been lulled into a complacency that is destroying the promise of the dream.
“The ruling elite has convinced too many young adults that it's OK to stay at home and live in your parents’ basements playing video games or aimlessly roaming the streets with friends,” Carson added. “After all, you can get a monthly check, a free cell phone, and health insurance from Uncle Sam for doing nothing. Opportunity has been replaced by despair. Embracing character, values, marriage, and family has been ridiculed. Government dependence has been substituted for self-reliance. And mediocrity has replaced excellence.”
Carson called on conservatives to join him in “demolishing this culture of failure and standing up to the media elite so that we can take back our country.”
Besides Carson and West, other speakers at the event include former Gov. Sarah Palin, R-Alaska, Gov. Bobby Jindal, R-La., U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, U.S. Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, U.S. Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C., and U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn.
Reach Kevin Derby at firstname.lastname@example.org.