Following the Iowa Caucus, presidential candidate Ben Carson said that, "Dirty tricks were used in Iowa." He made the charge that Ted Cruz's campaign knowingly and deceitfully told caucus goers that Carson was dropping out of the race.
"I was reasonably happy today, until I, you know, discovered the dirty tricks that were going on and people spreading rumors that I had dropped out and that people should caucus for someone else," Carson said to multiple news outlets.
He Said, CNN Said
It all began with a news report from CNN stating Ben Carson was going to take a few days off, not go to New Hampshire and possibly make a big announcement next week. The Cruz campaign passed on this news to caucus goers in Iowa. Once Carson's allegations became public, the Cruz campaign also addressed the issue head on.
"On the Ben Carson allegations, it's just false. We simply as a campaign repeated what Ben Carson had said --- had said in his own words. He said after Iowa he was going to go back to Florida for a couple days, and then he was going to go to D.C. for the Prayer HEP Breakfast," Cruz spokesman Rick Tyler said in an interview on MSNBC's Morning Joe. "And what that told us was he was not going to New Hampshire. That's not a dirty trick. That was really surprising by a campaign who was once leading in Iowa, saying he's not going to come to New Hampshire. I mean, that's a news item."
Put into context, the CNN report more than implies Carson would be suspending his campaign --- and that's exactly what CNN speculated.
"On CNN they were speculating that he [Carson] was going to drop out because nobody in their right mind does that, especially with the excuse that Ben Carson gave to the press," Glenn said Wednesday on The Glenn Beck Program. "You're running for president of the United States. You have to go to New Hampshire. Everybody got on their plane the next morning and flew to New Hampshire."
While Glenn and his co-hosts greatly admire Dr. Carson, his excuse for not going directly to New Hampshire just didn't hold water.
"He had to go get a set of fresh clothes," Co-host Stu Burguiere revealed.
Can you hear crickets chirping?
"That's just an unreasonable statement," Glenn said. "You could say this, 'I have personal issues I have to deal with. I just have to go home for two days and be with my wife. I just need to be at home with my family for two days. I'll be back in New Hampshire in two days.' Not, 'I'm going home because I have to get a fresh pair of clothes. And then I'm going to a prayer breakfast in Washington. We'll check back with you.' That's ridiculous."
Common Sense Bottom Line
Ted Cruz apologized to Ben Carson for the confusion surrounding the CNN report --- and the Cruz campaign's subsequent response. However, there were no "dirty" dealings.
"If there's a chance that somebody is dropping out of the race, you're darn right I'm going to get my people on and say, 'Go over and get those Ben Carson people because they identity with us and they're good, and if he's dropping out of the race, let's get them.' There's nothing wrong with that," Glenn said. "That's not a line. That's not cheating. That's not thievery. That's not dishonest."
Listen to this complimentary segment from The Glenn Beck Program:
Below is a rush transcript of this segment, it might contain errors:
GLENN: All right. Let's start with the audio where Ben Carson says, "Dirty tricks were used in Iowa." It's cut 542. Listen to this.
BEN: I was reasonably happy today, until I, you know, discovered the dirty tricks that were going on and people spreading rumors that I had dropped out and that people should caucus for someone else. I mean, do you think that that's something that is acceptable?
PAT: I don't think that's something that happened.
GLENN: Okay. Let's explain. Let's explain what happened. He made this charge. And he was making the charge that Cruz played a dirty trick, and what Cruz did was tell the caucus goers that -- not Cruz. Not Cruz. Cruz campaign people and the local or state people, right? It doesn't matter. It doesn't matter. His name is on it. So it doesn't matter.
GLENN: So the Cruz campaign said that he was going to drop out and so -- next week he was going to drop out. In fact, I want to get this right. The press release that they released to their caucus goers said that CNN reported that Ben Carson was going to take a few days off next week and not go to New Hampshire, and then had a possible big announcement next week. So they should convince caucus goers for Ben Carson to come over to Cruz. When that was found out, Carson said, "Dirty tricks were used." And here's the response from the Cruz campaign.
VOICE: On the Ben Carson allegations, it's just false. We simply as a campaign repeated what Ben Carson had said -- had said in his own words. He said after Iowa he was going to go back to Florida for a couple days, and then he was going to go to DC for the Prayer HEP Breakfast. And what that told us was he was not going to New Hampshire. That's not a dirty trick. That was really surprising by a campaign who was once leading in Iowa, saying he's not going to come to New Hampshire. I mean, that's a news item.
GLENN: Now, it's not them reading into this. This is what CNN reported. And on CNN, they were speculating that he was going to drop out because nobody in their right mind does that, especially with the excuse that Ben Carson gave to the press.
GLENN: Do you know what the excuse was?
PAT: I -- I don't know.
STU: Oh, it's totally believable.
GLENN: It's totally believable. Now, hang on. You're running for president of the United States. You have to go to New Hampshire. And the next thing that's beginning right away. Everybody got on their plane the next morning and flew to New Hampshire.
JEFFY: That evening.
GLENN: That evening.
PAT: It's a week away. Less than that.
GLENN: He didn't go because...
STU: He had to go get a set of fresh clothes.
PAT: No way. That was really the excuse?
GLENN: Yes, that's the excuse.
JEFFY: To be more specific, I believe it was he had to get new suits. Right? Different suits?
STU: Well, I believe the quote was "a set of fresh clothes."
PAT: He's only a neurosurgeon. He can't afford to run out and do that at a store.
STU: No. On the fly.
PAT: You want him to go to a men's warehouse and buy a whole new suit?
GLENN: You're a presidential candidate -- let me tell you something. You're Ben Carson. You're Ben Carson.
STU: Who, by the way, has one of the best-run campaigns. The guy has plenty of money.
PAT: He's got a lot of money.
GLENN: Yeah, yeah. And the campaign could buy the suits. You could hire somebody to come. You could get somebody to make a suit for you in Iowa. You could hire the best people in the world to come and make you a suit or bring you suits. You could hire a department store to come and bring you the suits, if you're Ben Carson.
JEFFY: They probably would do that for Ben.
GLENN: Of course they would. Of course they would.
PAT: They love him, they would probably do it for free.
GLENN: You could call any department -- you could call Macy's. You could call HEP Burgdorf or Nordstrom's or something like that.
PAT: Oh, not in Iowa. There's the problem. He's in Iowa.
GLENN: You can call them in New York and say, "I'm Ben Carson. I need somebody to come and bring a tailor and bring some suits to me." And that's easy to do.
STU: And that's high-end dealing with it.
GLENN: Yeah. Yeah.
STU: Another way to deal with it. I haven't done my personal research on it, but it's my understanding that there are dry cleaners in New Hampshire. So in theory, it's possible that you would bring your old clothes to New Hampshire and get them dry cleaned.
GLENN: There's another thing. Let's say you rip your pants or whatever.
PAT: That's unbelievable.
GLENN: Remember when we would go on the road. We would be on the road for like a month, month and a half.
GLENN: You remember how many times one of us, we would get to a town and we'd go, "I've got to find a men's store. I got to go find a men's store. I need to buy two new shirts. I need a jacket."
GLENN: And we would -- one of us, invariably would always have to stop once a week or something. One of the would say, "I have to get some socks." That's what you do.
PAT: Well, yeah, we were in Cleveland a couple years ago, and it was bone-chilling cold, and none of us were dressed for it. Remember that?
GLENN: Yeah, there was something that happened. We were on the road. We weren't supposed to go there. And it was -- I don't remember what happened. But we flew there. We got there at like midnight. We had meetings or shows to do. And we found a place that opened at 8 o'clock in the morning. We were like, "Okay. We need coats. We need coats."
JEFFY: Are you saying you didn't fly back home?
GLENN: We didn't fly back home.
PAT: That's just ridiculous.
GLENN: Here's the thing. That's just an unreasonable statement.
PAT: It is. It is.
GLENN: Just an unreasonable statement. If that really what he has, then that shows this man is not taking this campaign seriously.
STU: Right. And, look, maybe he just wanted to go home and have a night at home during the campaign. That's fine. He gave an excuse that sounded like an excuse a campaign makes when they're about to drop out. People started speculating that they were going to drop out.
GLENN: That's what was happening on CNN.
STU: It happened on CNN. It happened certainly all over social media.
STU: And so Cruz eventually apologized for his campaign because they didn't update it after he came up with the excuse. So he told --
GLENN: Would you have bought that excuse?
STU: I didn't buy it.
GLENN: I wouldn't have bought that excuse.
STU: That's a good argument for Ben Carson to drop out of the race.
GLENN: You could say this, "I have personal issues I have to deal with. I just have to go home for two days and be with my wife. I just need to be at home with my family for two days. I'll be back in New Hampshire in two days."
PAT: That's believable. That's believable.
GLENN: Not, "I'm going home because I have to get a fresh pair of clothes. And then I'm going to a prayer breakfast in Washington. We'll check back with you." That's ridiculous.
STU: It's a terrible idea, if that's the way it is. And beyond that, like, look, what did it cost? Let's just say crazy, it was 100 votes. Crazy, I mean, Ben Carson finished in fourth by 18 percent. 19 percent. He was not on the verge of winning and lost by 20 votes and has cost him the election.
PAT: No way.
STU: He finished fourth place. No matter what happened with this, he was going to finish in fourth place.
GLENN: No, he was not going to beat Marco Rubio.
STU: It's silly. This is Ben Carson saying, "Look, this isn't going the way I hoped." And, again, we like Ben Carson. He's a good guy.
GLENN: I really like Ben Carson.
STU: He's frustrated. And he's making -- you know, he's getting desperate.
GLENN: Here's the thing, you know, I talked to Ted Cruz over the weekend, and I said -- because some of this stuff that was being said about him is just unbelievable.
GLENN: How Marco Rubio can sleep at night is beyond me because he is just lying. Just lying. There's a difference between, you know, making mistakes because everybody makes mistakes. Making mistakes and lying. And when you are -- when you are -- you know, if you're on the stage and you're like, "Look, your record on the border is this, this, and this." But once you
have -- you know, people all coming out, the Washington Post and everyone else going, "You're lying about that. That's not true," and you continue to do it --
PAT: That's a Barack Obama tactic.
GLENN: It's a Barack Obama tactic, and it shows that you have no respect for the truth. And that to me says something about your character.
PAT: It does to me too.
GLENN: Hang on just a second. That's different than this. I don't think Ted Cruz was lying. I wouldn't have bought that. The guy is going to get clothes?
PAT: No way.
GLENN: So what happens? It's not that he's trying to hurt him. He has to be the first one on those -- those votes. Because everybody -- why do you think Donald Trump came out and said, "By the way, I love Mike Huckabee. Mike Huckabee, you're the best. I just want to French kiss Mike Huckabee and give give him a building."
PAT: He wants that whopping 2 percent.
GLENN: He does. He wants that 2 percent. So if there's a chance that somebody is dropping out of the race, you darn right I'm going to get my people on and say, "Go over and get those Ben Carson people because they identity with us and they're good, and if he's dropping out of the race, let's get them." There's nothing wrong with that. That's not a line. That's not cheating. That's not thievery. That's not dishonest.
STU: No. Every candidate would do that. The only reason that Cruz apologized is because they didn't send a second message to correct the first message once Carson came out with this excuse that I don't believe at all. And I'm sure no one in the campaign believed. But, still, maybe they should have done that, I don't know. But I think with the Rubio stuff, what's interesting with that, Trump in a way has Overton windowed our expectations so far. That when Rubio says something that's not true about Cruz's record, I'm like, eh. It almost -- because we have the other guy saying, "This guy was born in Saskatchewan." His attacks are so nuts, that the typical political falsehoods don't seem as bad.
PAT: He was born in Saskatchewan.
GLENN: Well, that kind of goes to -- last night, I did a monologue on television. And I talked about the thing that nobody is really talking about in this. Nobody is talking about the Iowa race in this way. We're sitting here talking about, you know, Cruz and Carson and Rubio and Trump. Nobody is talking about 50 percent of the Democrats voted for an outright socialist
Featured Image: Ben Carson speaks at his Iowa Caucus Night Party in the Marriott Hotel on February 1, 2016 in West Des Moines, Iowa. Carson is projected to finish fourth in the GOP running. (Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images)