Republican presidential contender Dr. Ben Carson has put his public campaign events on hold for two more weeks to go on book tour for his new tome “A More Perfect Union” and catch up on fundraising events.
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The campaign has been careful to separate campaign events and the book tour, and doesn’t want to classify the tour as related to the campaign in any way.
This week he is catching up on fundraising events and will be back on his book tour next week making stops in Texas, Oklahoma, Missouri, Kansas, Nebraska and Iowa. So for the next two weeks, Carson won't be appearing at any public "campaign events."
Carson will be going back and forth between campaign fundraising events and book tour events over the next two weeks. His campaign says he has over 20 campaign fundraising events scheduled over that time period.
The campaign says the next time they will appear publicly with Carson will be the day of the next GOP debate on Oct. 28. His last public campaign event was Oct. 2.
Carson's campaign staff will not travel with him while on tour, noting that it’s better to stay off the trail for fear of being accused of using campaign assets to sell books.
“It’s a question of co-mingling from the corporate standpoint to the Federal Election Commission standpoint so it’s just better to avoid any bad appearance,” spokesman Doug Watts told ABC News.
But, it’s in keeping with his unconventional campaign style –- taking a break from campaign events and going on book tour while his campaign staff stays at home, spending very little time in early states, all the while still managing to remain high in the polls. He’s even managed to climb into a dead heat with Donald Trump in the latest national poll from Fox News yesterday.
The lack of public campaign events doesn’t seem to be hurting his visibility or influx of donations. Watts says they have raised $3 million so far this month and have about 15,000 pieces of mail sitting at the post office that average about $50 a donation, which is not included in the monthly total.
The book proceeds are personal, and are not connected to Dr. Carson’s presidential campaign, however the campaign does note they are indirectly making money off the book and views its release during a time when he is polling so high as beneficial.
Touting his recent poll numbers, the campaign says it is not worried Carson isn’t out and about as much.
“Our numbers went up in the Fox poll in the last 7 days our numbers went up in the CBS poll in the last 4 days,” Watts said. “They did the same thing in Virginia and we are the only Republican beating Hillary Clinton in Virginia so right now I don’t see any reason to be worried.”
Carson may not be frequenting diners and cafés in early states, but he is invading millions of television sets nationwide, making over 100 media appearances (radio and TV) since the book was released.
“He’s been on TV. I think Wednesday through Friday I got sick of looking at him on TV,” Watts said. “So it’s pretty hard to suggest that he’s not out and about. Whether you make a distinction of it as a campaign thing or not. Most people at home just see Ben Carson out there talking about something that’s is or isn’t important to them.”