Tim Murphy

Tim Murphy

Reporter

Tim Murphy is a senior reporter in MoJo's DC bureau. His writing has been featured in Slate and the Washington Monthly. Email him with tips and insights at tmurphy [at] motherjones [dot] com.

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Why the Heck Is Ben Carson Campaigning in Staten Island?

| Mon Jan. 4, 2016 12:51 PM EST

The New York Republican presidential primary is in 106 days, on April 19. It is the 37th nominating contest, coming more than three months after the first votes are cast in Iowa on February 1. So naturally Ben Carson is campaigning there on Monday night.

This is kind of strange. Carson's campaign is a mess right now. When three of his top aides quit before the New Year, Armstrong Williams, Carson's top advisor, found out about it on Twitter. Carson, a retired neurosurgeon, once was at the top of the polls, but his numbers have plummeted in Iowa and elsewhere. Still, he insists he's plowing ahead and remains a contender. If so, what's he doing in Staten Island, while the other candidates rightly focus on Iowa and New Hampshire in the pre-voting homestretch? Some possibilities:

  • The ferry offers a great view of the harbor at a low price.
  • Carson wants to run for mayor of New York and is learning from Harold Ford's mistake.
  • Fresh Kills is a cool name for one of the world's largest garbage dumps.
  • Great pizza.
  • ???

There's no real explanation for this stop. (Has Carson sold every book he can possibly sell in Iowa?) It's the latest sign his campaign—though it collected $23 million in the most recent quarter—cannot be considered a serious effort.

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Actually, Conservatives Have Been Praising Internment for a Long Time

| Tue Dec. 8, 2015 10:44 AM EST

On Tuesday, Donald Trump followed up his proposal to ban Muslims from traveling to the United States by telling Time that he might have supported the internment of Japanese Americans during World War II. Many Republicans have condemned his proposal to bar Muslims from American soil, but the idea of applying principles of internment to the war on terror is not an unfamiliar one among elements of the conservative base either.

This is an actual book from New York Times best-selling author and esteemed Fox News talking head Michelle Malkin, from 2004:

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