In case you haven’t noticed, Carson is black. You might not have noticed because he behaves a lot more like a white evangelical Christian than a black man.
How does this affect the race? (That’s the presidential race and not Carson’s biological race.)
The evangelical right loves the fact that Carson is black. Evangelicals, more so than all other Republicans, are very saddened that people think they are racist, which as we all know is the most evil kind of person imaginable. Evangelicals believe that by supporting a black candidate, they will finally prove to everyone that they are full of Love for people of all races, and that the liberals will be so amazed that they will find Christ and support anti-abortion laws thereby preventing the murder of millions of innocent babies. Then God will reward everyone for this victory of Christianity over the forces of atheism.
Of course, that’s now how it’s going to play out. Liberals aren’t that stupid. They know they hate Republicans, conservatives, and evangelical Christianity. Carson will be portrayed as an Uncle Tom who is ashamed of being black (in addition to being a crazy religious nut who believes in Creationism and Bible-based taxation). Not a single white person, who would normally vote Democratic, will vote Republican because the Republican is black. Nor will any non-black Hispanics. A few black people will vote for Carson; maybe Carson will win 10% of the black vote instead of the normal 0%, but that’s not going to make any difference and Carson would lose in a massive landslide on account of the fact that he’s a horrible politician (although he seems like a nice and well-meaning person).
I admit, however, to being clueless as to whether the Republican political elite and their rich donors will support Carson if he appears to be the only candidate with a realistic chance of beating Trump in the primary elections. In any event, they are not going to make any decisions about that until after tonight’s debate and there are some post-debate polls.
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The Republican political elite and their rich donors are probably hoping that Carly Fiorina can somehow win this debate, get a big boost in post-debate polls, and they can then throw their support behind her. It’s a longshot, but not impossible. She’s the only candidate other than Carson or Trump who is coming into this debate with momentum in the polls.