The 2016 Race Could Have Its First Contender: Ben Carson

While potential candidates have been dodging the 2016 question for months -- for the sake of midterm candidates, the element of suspense or honest indecision -- the race to the White House is about to seriously pick up steam.

Dr. Ben Carson has long fanned speculation that he may pursue the Republican nomination for president in 2016. That speculation could turn to reality this weekend, as ABC News has confirmed the conservative plans to air a 40-minute introductory ad.

The ad will be presented in the form of a documentary, giving insight into Carson's background and ambitions. It will run in 22 states and Washington, D.C. The ad was funded and filmed by a production company owned by Armstrong Williams, Carson's business manager.

Carson, a neurosurgeon, regularly appears on Fox News as a commentator. He has never held political office. Carson has presented at the Conservative Political Action Conference a couple of times, where he's openly ridiculed the president and said gay people "don't deserve extra rights," among other things.

When asked about his presidential ambitions in the past, Carson has repeatedly responded that he would "leave it up to God." Last month, he told Fusion that he did not want to be president.

"Why would any sane person want to do that?” he asked.

What other not-so-sane individuals could join Carson if he enters the race? Here's our roundup of every person pollsters have regarded as a potential 2016 candidate.

UPDATE -- 2:13 p.m.: According to Politico, Fox News has cut its ties with the contributing conservative since hearing of the anticipated ad. Politico notes that Fox has cut ties with other commentators, including Newt Gingrich, Rick Santorum and Scott Brown after learning of their political ambitions.

CORRECTION: A previous version of this article indicated the ad was Carson's formal announcement of his bid for president. The ad will only introduce Carson to viewers, not declare his entry into the race.



Potential 2016 Presidential Contenders