Damn. Ben Carson, who just launched the world’s greatest struggle rap ad campaign of all time, is having a hell of a week. Though he’s apparently the only Republican with enough support to realistically take on some guy named Donald Trump, the very narrative (much of it self-perpetuated) surrounding his rise to political prominence has been publicly questioned and greatly scrutinized since CNN started digging into Carson’s former acquaintances and classmates.
Though Carson was quick to rebuke CNN’s suggestion that the Republican presidential hopeful may not have been totally honest about his purportedly violent past, his campaign was even quicker to concede to Politico that another crucial element in the Ben Carson narrative was a fabrication: that silly little West Point scholarship. "In 1969, those who would have completed the entire process would have received their acceptance letters from the Army Adjutant General," Theresa Brinkerhoff, a spokesperson for West Point, tells Politico. "If he chose to pursue [application] then we would have records indicating such," adds Brinkerhoff, who reveals that no such records exist that indicate Carson ever beginning the application process.
When confronted with this evidence by Politico, Carson’s campaign admitted defeat. "Dr. Carson was the top ROTC student in the city of Detroit," campaign manager Barry Bennett says. "In that role he was invited to meet General Westmoreland. He believes it was at a banquet. He can’t remember with specificity their brief conversation but it centered around Dr. Carson’s performance as ROTC City Executive Officer." Though he didn’t "remember with specificity," Carson has often relied on this now-proven-fictional West Point scholarship in his own books. In Gifted Hands, Carson apparently attributes a "full scholarship" to the academy to his apparently forgettable meeting with General Westmoreland.