- The Washington Times - Friday, January 16, 2015

Retired neurosurgeon and possible 2016 presidential candidate Ben Carson has tapped Ryan Rhodes, a top political insider, to oversee his Iowa campaign — and he also plans to launch an exploratory committee in the coming two to three weeks, The Iowa Republican website reported.

Mr. Carson will make his announcement about his White House decision by May 1 at the latest, but the decision seems to falling on the side of “yes,” the Iowa Republican said.

Mr. Carson will launch an exploratory committee “within the next two or three weeks,” said Terry Giles, who heads up Mr. Carson’s One Nation PAC, the news outlet reported.

Mr. Giles also said he’s met with Mr. Rhodes and likes his passion, The Iowa Republican reported. Mr. Rhodes has worked on several notable campaigns, including Michele Bachmann’s run for the presidency in 2012.

“I talked to a number of people,” he told news outlet, “but I really liked Ryan’s style. First of all, he’s really passionate about Dr. Carson. We are not letting anybody in the inside of our campaign, even the seasoned political pros, unless they are passionate about Dr. Carson and our policy positions.”

The PAC is separate from any presidential exploration committee, and from any presidential campaign and cannot — by election laws — coordinate with an official presidential campaign. But Mr. Giles told The Daily Caller that he is expecting to soon announce a presidential campaign for Mr. Carson — a campaign that he himself would then head.

“I fully expect … to announce our exploratory committee,” Mr. Giles told the Daily Caller. “It won’t be later than May first. And whether it’s sooner than that will depend on circumstances.”

• Cheryl K. Chumley can be reached at cchumley@washingtontimes.com.

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