Los Angeles Times
By Kurtis Lee
September 6, 2016
Ben Carson has a response to all the criticism Donald Trump has faced over his vow to deport an estimated 11 million people in the United States illegally: Forget he ever said it.
Trump was battling fellow Republicans in the race for the party's presidential nomination when he called for the mass deportations. Now that the general election campaign is underway, Carson told CNN on Tuesday, those comments barely matter.
"It’s relatively irrelevant at this point because it is what it is,” said the retired neurosurgeon and Trump supporter who competed against him for the nomination. “He is the nominee, and has to come up with rational and workable plans, has to work with various advisors and experts in terms of the best way to do this.”
In recent weeks, Trump has wavered on his immigration proposals. Throughout the primary, he insisted that anyone in the country illegally would be deported under his administration and at one point said that being born in the U.S. should not automatically confer citizenship.
Now with about two months until election day, he has said that any mass deportation effort is unlikely and has instead focused on a plan to deport those in the country illegally with criminal records.
Pressed during his CNN interview, Carson also backpedaled on his comment about Trump's immigration promises.
"Well, I didn’t say that they were irrelevant, but bear in mind, what you talk about during a campaign, and what actually happens, as you know, in all administrations are different,” he said. “You get different information. You learn things along the way and you make adjustments along the way. Perhaps there were others who had already learned those things. It doesn't matter.”
Carson, who toured his old Detroit neighborhood with Trump last weekend and is helping facilitate meetings between the candidate and African American leaders, was also asked about Trump’s racially charged contention dating back to 2011 that President Obama was not born in the United States.
Carson said it would be a "good idea" for the Republican nominee to apologize.
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