Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson hosted a rally Saturday evening in West Des Moines, Iowa. Here some of the main points of interest.
1. In response to a student’s question about Carson’s plan to keep higher education affordable, Carson says he thinks universities should be responsible for paying off interest accumulated by students on their students loans. He says this would reduce student loan debt and create an incentive for universities to ensure students graduate on time.
“Make the student responsible for the principle, and the schools responsible for the interest,” Carson says. “That way, they have skin in the game.”
2. Instead of affirmative action, Carson advocates for “compassionate action,” which he says involves giving those who are disadvantaged extra consideration when they apply for college — regardless of race.
“Americans have always rooted for the underdog,” Carson says. “I think it’s an admirable trait. However, the underdog is not defined by race. The underdog is defined by status. I believe in something I call compassionate action.”
3. Carson supports the nation’s space program, citing the 20th century space race and the innovations it led to.
“Anybody with any sense knows that in the future, he who controls space will control the Earth,” Carson says. “It would be a major mistake to [end] that program, not because we want men walking on the moon, but because we want to foster the innovation and creativity that has characterized our nation.”
4. There was a distinct lack of professional media at the rally, at least compared to media coverage of front-runner candidates. Carson was quick to point this out and asserts the “press will never report” what is going on at his campaign rallies.
5. Carson says it is not a disadvantage that he is a doctor instead of a “career politician.” He says “politicians create problems,” and a political outsider is needed to solve these problems.
6. Carson remains firm in his assessment of the migrant crisis in the Middle East, asserting there is an area in Syria that is “perfect for resettlement” for migrants. He says this would be a cheaper and more effective option than bringing migrants to the United States.