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Ben Carson Says His Health Care Views Evolved Since Advocating Partially Government-Run Plan

"A lot of things have changed since then."

Posted on January 24, 2015, at 2:38 p.m. ET

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Dr. Ben Carson, the potential Republican presidential candidate and world-renowned neurosurgeon, says his views on health care have evolved since advocating for a partially nationalized government-run health care proposal in a 1996 article.

Nearly two decades ago in the essay that ran in the Harvard Journal of Minority Public Health Carson proposed government-run nationalized catastrophic care, essentially replacing Medicaid with health care food stamps, and "national guidelines" about when the elderly and terminally ill should receive care.

"That paper bears about as much resemblance to my current views as our views on Afghanistan did 20 years ago," Carson said speaking in a press conference at the Iowa Freedom Summit on Saturday. "Things change."

Asked if he changed his views because of the Affordable Care Act by Bloomberg Politics' David Weigel, Carson said his views evolved for many reasons.

"A lot of things have changed since then," he said. "The main thing that that shows you is that this is not something that is new to me. I've been thinking about health care policy and finding better ways for people to get health care. But obviously anybody who's a thinking person, who is looking at things as they evolve will also evolve those opinions."

Carson, a vocal critic of the Affordable Care Act, currently proposes reforming health care though a program of giving a $2,000 stipend to each American to set up Health Savings Accounts, he told Politico last year.

Carson's 1996 article can be viewed here.

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