The buzz around Carson underscores the unsettled nature of the GOP’s social-conservative wing. Even as Carson gains traction, some activists fear that evangelicals risk pouring time, money and hope into another doomed candidate, as some did in 2012 with Santorum.
David Lane, an evangelical activist and founder of the American Renewal Project, which organizes church pastors in key states, said he does not have much time for Carson. Lane arranged Huckabee’s appearance with clergy in Cedar Rapids last week and has introduced pastors to Paul, Jindal and Perry.
“Anyone who votes for Ben Carson has no idea what they are doing politically,” Lane said. “He’s got zero chance of becoming president or getting the Republican nomination.”
Carson, in an interview, accused the Republican Party of turning its back on some of its core supporters.
“In the rush to get on the political-correctness bandwagon, people have abandoned the concept of faith,” he said. “That is where the disconnect is.”