Earlier this afternoon, GOP presidential hopeful Ben Carson announced he was temporarily suspending his campaign.
According to the Associated Press via Charleston, S.C., ABC affiliate WCIV, the announcement was made at the Historic Rotary Club of Charleston. Carson explained his decision was made for him following a serious accident in Atlantic, Iowa involving some of his staffers, one of whom he said to be in “grave condition.”
Carson’s campaign released a statement noting:
Three of the passengers, including the campaign staffer driving, are currently being checked out at Cass County Memorial Hospital in Atlantic…. One volunteer is being transported to the trauma center at the University of Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha, Nebraska.
The accident occurred when the van the staff members were riding in slid on an icy road. Carson told those present that he planned to fly to Omaha to be with the staff members’ families.
Carson has experienced a steady decline in his poll numbers in recent weeks, which seems to have had a paradoxical effect on his mood. Several commentators have noted that the candidate seems more at ease and even jocular at times.
This is a developing story. Updates will be provided as new information becomes available.