When the Fox Business Network moderators asked neurosurgeon Ben Carson his first question during Thursday's GOP primary debate, he was quick to joke about his mild manners. Carson said he appreciated being asked a question so early in the debate, or else he might have needed a wake-up call.
"I was going to ask you to wake me up," Carson told the moderators. While the joke showed that Carson does have a sense of humor about himself, his laid-back demeanor has been the subject of much discussion — and in the end, the joke backfired later on.
When Carson was asked a question later about airstrikes against ISIS, it appeared he was actually falling asleep. The moderators asked Carson a question about the airstrikes over the past 16 months, centered around South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham's criticism of the airstrikes' efficacy. Carson replied, "Who's in their 16th month?" confusedly before answering the question. He went on to say, "Don't put people in there if you're not gonna bomb," a phrase that makes literally no sense.
Carson may have thought he was turning the tables on his reserved personality with his opening remarks, but he only succeeded in setting the stage for his own mockery.
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