Ben Carson went on “The View” last week, where he was subjected to some cynical questioning by Whoopi Goldberg about his denial of the existence of a “war on women.” When asked to clarify whether he had any “empathy” for women, Carson held his ground and highlighted his support for social programs to help struggling mothers. Carson also went over his background as a doctor and how it shaped his support for the right to life. You can watch the full interview below:
WHOOPI GOLDBERG: One of the other quotes that we’ve sort of gotten from the research is that you sort of feel that there’s not actually a war on women, but there may be a war on what’s inside of women. Is that accurate?
JOY BEHAR: What does that mean?
BEN CARSON: Yeah. The babies. We are killing babies all over the place. We should be — I think people can probably understand. In my case, I spent my entire career, trying to preserve life and give people quality of life, even operating on babies in the womb. Operating all night long sometimes on premature baby, and I get to meet those people when they’re adults. And productive adults. There is no way you’re going to convince me that they’re not important. That they are just a mass of cells and that you can do anything to them.
GOLDBERG: I want to say — I want to ask you this. Have you met with the women who have to make these more horrendous decisions when they have to make them, of whether or not they can bring a child into the world? We talk about bringing children into the world all of the time but periodically, some women feel I just can’t. And are you empathetic to them because we just had —
CARSON: I’m very empathetic.
GOLDBERG: Oh, good. Go ahead, sorry, go ahead.
CARSON: Very empathetic and what I have said is that this is a job for us in the private sector. What we need to do is make sure that we provide adequate day care centers for these mothers, so that they can get their GED, their associate’s degree, their bachelor’s degree, their master’s degree.
GOLDBERG: You’re assuming that these are mothers who are not educated. I’m talking about women who make that —
CARSON: I’m talking about most of them.
GOLDBERG: I don’t know that you can —
CARSON: Let me tell you a fact. Let me tell you a fact. The fact is, a lot of those young girls who are having babies out of wedlock, when they have that first baby.
GOLDBERG: We are not talking about them actually.
CARSON: They stop their education. And that child is four times likely to grow up in poverty. We as a society have an obligation to do what’s necessary to stop that cycle from occurring.
BEHAR: So, how important is birth control then to the Republican Party? They should be out there applauding Planned Parenthood for supplying birth control, mammograms, and everything else. Why are they against Planned Parenthood? Are you against birth control too?
CARSON: I don’t speak for the Republican Party, I speak for me.
BEHAR: Okay for yourself, are you against birth control also?
CARSON: No, I’m not.
BEHAR: Okay, alright. And so I guess you believe in day care centers, and maternity leave, and food stamps, and all of the things that go along with raising a kid if you don’t have the money.
CARSON: Here’s what I believe in. Because I get sick and tired of people, particularly Progressives saying Carson grew up poor. He must have benefited from government programs. And now he wants to withdraw programs from poor people.
BEHAR: We did not assume that.
CARSON: Wait a minute. I’ve heard that so many times. You’ve heard it too.
GOLDBERG: Not from us.
BEHAR: Not from us.
CARSON: It’s a bunch of crap. And what I really actually want to do is provide people with a mechanism for coming out of a state of dependency and climbing the ladder and becoming part of the fabric of America.
Nick Arnold is a researcher for American Principles In Action.