Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson released a fiery statement on Friday denouncing a reported meeting attended by his party’s top leaders earlier in the week.
“If the leaders of the Republican Party want to destroy the party, they should continue to hold meetings like the one described in the Washington Post this morning,” Carson said, according to multiple reports.
The retired neurosurgeon even threatened to leave the party, referencing front-runner Donald Trump’s own threats to run as an independent.
“If this was the beginning of a plan to subvert the will of the voters and replace it with the will of the political elite, I assure you Donald Trump will not be the only one leaving the party,” Carson said.
The Washington Post reported Thursday that a number of Republican officials, including Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus and Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky), had a dinner on Monday where they discussed how the party would handle a so-called brokered convention.
Brokered conventions are rare, as a candidate typically secures a majority of the delegates needed in the primary to secure each party’s presidential nomination. But with a deep bench of GOP candidates, some party leaders are reportedly preparing for such a scenario.
“Our goal is to ensure a successful nomination and that requires us thinking through every scenario, including a contested convention,” an RNC spokesman told The Post.
The Post report was also explosive because unnamed “longtime power brokers” also discussed organising an anti-Trump effort should the real-estate mogul still be dominant after the primary contests. Priebus and McConnell were reportedly silent during this part of the meeting and the RNC spokesman said the national party is officially “neutral.”
But Carson was clearly unhappy that the meeting even took place.
“I pray that the report in the Post this morning was incorrect,” he said in the Friday statement. “If it is correct, every voter who is standing for change must know they are being betrayed. I won’t stand for it.”
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