Dr. Ben Carson explains why he is backing Donald Trump

On 'Your World,' former GOP presidential candidate slams political operatives for trying to manipulate results


This is a rush transcript from "Your World," March 11, 2016. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

NEIL CAVUTO, HOST:  All right, well, don`t look now, but the doctor is in Donald Trump`s house, surprisingly backing Donald Trump, the front-runner for the Republican nomination, when a little more than a couple of weeks ago, they were -- well, I guess they were kind of at each other`s throats, although they were a bit more diplomatic than some of the other nasty pairings we have seen.

Dr. Ben Carson joining me now.  

Doctor, good to have you.  


CAVUTO:  Why Donald Trump?  

CARSON:  Because I am very concerned about the process that we`re in right now, where we have political operatives trying to manipulate the results.

And the fact of the matter is, this should be a decision that is made by we, the people.  And I believe that if this is carried on, and they are able to deny him the nomination, it will wreak havoc in the party.  It will destroy.  And it will hand the election to the Democrats, who will get two to four Supreme Court picks, and the face of America will be changed for decades to come.  

When you compare that against if Trump gets in and he is not a good president, which I don`t believe will be the case -- I think he will be a good president, particularly with help -- you`re only talking about four or eight years.  

So, I mean, you have to put these things in perspective and be able to look at the big picture.  

CAVUTO:  Now, earlier today, Doctor, at this joint press conference, Donald Trump has said he has the big lead here, and that that should be reason enough to see him as the eventual nominee.  

I have had historians here, including one just with me just a second ago, Evan Meacham (ph), who says, well, unless, in this case, it`s 1,237, you`re not there.  

What do you think of that argument, if you`re not at that number, that magic number -- and you know it well -- you`re not the nominee?

CARSON:  Well, the rules are the rules.  And as long as the rules stay the rules, and we don`t change the rules at the last minute, I have no problem with that.  

CAVUTO:  All right, so if you go to a first ballot...

CARSON:  We knew that going in.  

CAVUTO:  I`m sorry, Doctor.

You go to a first ballot and Donald Trump comes up just shy of the 1,237, then what?  

CARSON:  The rules are the rules, and then it becomes a contested convention at that point.  

That doesn`t necessarily mean backroom brokering.  It just means that it`s being contested at that point.  And I think there probably would be appropriate ways to resolve that.  

CAVUTO:  All right, but your fear was -- and you expressed this, to be fair to you, in the middle of the campaign when you heard this talk about dinners and Republican establishment-type folks getting together to discuss their concerns about Donald Trump even then, when you were still a very active candidate in the race -- you didn`t like the sound of that, and that you, too, had threatened, it seemed, to bolt from the party.  

Have you have been -- have those concerns allayed -- in part alleviated somewhat, what?  


CARSON:  Those are very legitimate concerns with what I`m seeing happening right now.  

And I want particularly conservatives to recognize that the danger is not so much Donald Trump.  The danger is disrupting the populace to the point where you will not be able to win and you put in a progressive who will appoint two to four Supreme Court justices.  

If you can`t see that, and you see what a big danger there is there, we`re in big trouble.  

CAVUTO:  Why not Ted Cruz, Doctor?  Why didn`t you go or consider him?  

CARSON:  Because I don`t believe that he has the same ability to draw the independents and to draw the Democrats, and to pull other people into the party, as Mr. Trump does.  

CAVUTO:  So, there were not sort of like simmering differences over the whole issue in Iowa and later on at other events and primaries where you argued that he...

CARSON:  Oh, I`m long beyond that.  

CAVUTO:  Are you sure?  Because some would view that as this is Ben Carson`s got you back to Ted Cruz.  

CARSON:  No, not at all.  


CARSON:  No, I`m looking at much bigger pictures here.  

I`m looking at our children and our grandchildren and many generations beyond that, and what we`re going to do.  But I`m also looking for somebody who is not really attached in any way to the establishment.  And one of the things I admire about Donald Trump is, he is self-funded.  

It`s the same reason that I wouldn`t accept money from billionaires and special interest groups.  You have got to be able to go in there and do what has to be done, and it won`t always be the most popular thing.  

CAVUTO:  How did this come about, Doctor?  Did you seek Mr. Trump out, he you?  What?  

CARSON:  Well, we have been friendly.  And I just called him up and I said, "Donald, we need to have a talk."

And he said, "Absolutely, 100 percent."

And I went over.  I wanted to basically test them by throwing out some ideas and seeing how he reacted to them.  And if he had said, no, no, no, that`s not how we will do it, I would have been out of there.

CAVUTO:  Really?

CARSON:  But he wasn`t like that at all.  

He was very, very amenable and very pleasant.  And I think it`s going to be a very easy person to work with.  And that`s why I said, there are two different personas.  There`s the one that is projected by much of the media as this egomaniac who won`t listen to anybody, and then there`s a much more soft, cerebral individual who really does care about this nation.

And what you have to remember about Donald Trump is, he likes success, no matter what he is doing.  And he would want to be a successful president.  And he knows that in order to do that, he is going to have to surround himself with some awfully good people.  He knows that.

CAVUTO:  But you never mentioned the soft, cerebral Donald Trump during the campaign.  When did you get access to that candidate?  Because you were talking more about the louder, in-your-face one when you were at each other`s throats.  

CARSON:  Well, you know, once I dropped out, unlike some people, I didn`t decide to disappear.  I still had the same goal.  

The goal that I had in the beginning is to save America.  So, what do you do?  You sit down, you start thinking, what is the best mechanism that we can still save this country?

CAVUTO:  So, of the candidates who are still out there, Doctor, you ISIS , of the group I still see out there, he is the best?  

CARSON:  Yes.  

I mean, I think they`re all fine people.

CAVUTO:  Right.

CARSON:  And I wouldn`t have any problem with any of them, but you have to look at what is going to work, because if we fail at this endeavor, we`re in trouble.

CAVUTO:  Did any of the others ask for your support, Doctor?  Did any of the others ask for your support?

CARSON:  I have been talking with them.  And they all indicated, obviously, that that would be a wonderful thing.  

But, of course, that would be a good thing for anybody, but what I have to look at is, how do we save this country for the next generation?  

CAVUTO:  Did you give them a heads-up, hey, I`m going to support Donald Trump?  

CARSON:  No.  It did manage to leak out, as you saw.  


CAVUTO:  Right, by Donald Trump himself.  

This has come up before, Doctor.  Just, I`m obligated to ask.  Were any positions offered, or did you inquire about any positions in a Trump administration?  

CARSON:  I did not ask about any specific positions, except that I would like to be involved in helping to formulate the policies, to make sure that, in fact, not only do we provide the economic stability for the next generation, so they can enjoy the American dream, but also that we take the right stance on the world stage, because the world needs us in a leadership position.

CAVUTO:  But you never inquired about a Cabinet position for yourself, or anything else?


CAVUTO:  There was no stipulation attached to your...

CARSON:  No, absolutely not.  


It came during that same event, sir, Donald Trump was rather forcefully supporting his supporters at events that can get, maybe given the nature of the large crowds involved, pretty tense.  

This is what Donald Trump said earlier about that, and I want to get your reaction to it.  


DONALD TRUMP, R-PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE:  The particular one, when I said I would like that bang them, that was a very vicious -- a very -- it was a guy who was swinging very loud, and then started swinging at the audience.

And you know what?  The audience swung back.  And I thought it was very, very appropriate.  He was swinging.  He was hitting people.  And the audience hit back.  And that`s what we need a little bit more of.  


CAVUTO:  What do you think of that?  

CARSON:  I certainly understand that point of view.  

I probably would have simply left it to the police.  And I think they did eventually handle it.  But I don`t have any particular problem with people defending themselves.  That`s for sure.  

CAVUTO:  So, in the event of protesters defending themselves or those at events defending themselves?
CARSON:  If someone is in a crowd and they start hitting you, I think you certainly have a right to strike back.  


CARSON:  I have no problem with that at all.  

CAVUTO:  Were you concerned by other incidents?

CARSON:  In terms of inciting violence, I wouldn`t do that.  

CAVUTO:  Got you.  And that`s what some of Mr. Trump`s critics have said, that given the fact that he ushers people out of the room or gets pretty argumentative with them -- and protesters will do what protesters will do, glom on for attention.  There`s no doubt about that.

But do you think that he risks inciting the very activity he complains about?  

CARSON:  Well, particularly now that it`s getting known, people can actually set up a scenario which will create a big problem for him.  So, he should take that into consideration.  

CAVUTO:  Now, Doctor, you have been throughout the campaign a very calm, stabilizing presence.  

In fact, with all the craziness and invectives and nastiness going back and forth, you were true to exactly what you said you would be, calm, low-key.  I guess some of your staffers would say almost too low-key.  Some of them wanted you to get in your face and get a little nasty.  You never did.  And I`m wondering.  There would be many who would argue that because of that, it hurt you.  

Do you have any regrets that you weren`t more animated, more agitated, more willing to trade nasty exchanges, do the stuff that politicians do?  

CARSON:  No, because that is not who I am.  That is not what motivates me.  

And my example, really -- I have said it before -- is Christ.  And I`m going to act in a Christ-like manner, no matter what is going on.  

CAVUTO:  And that evangelical vote that seems to be tipping to Donald Trump, on any level.  If you knew going into this race and when Donald Trump joined this race that that would be the case, are you surprised?  

CARSON:  Well, first of all, when you talk about evangelical vote, what is an evangelical?  

A lot of people in the media think that that`s somebody who goes to church two Sundays out of the month.  What it really is, is somebody for whom Jesus Christ is the center of their lives, and all their interactions with the world are based upon that constraint.  

CAVUTO:  Dr. Ben Carson, thank you very much.  Good seeing you again.  

CARSON:  A pleasure.  Thank you.  

CAVUTO:  Ben Carson.  


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