Ben Carson’s Two Top Aides Resign

December 31, 2015, 6:51 PM UTC
GOP Presidential Candidates Debate In Milwaukee
MILWAUKEE, WI - NOVEMBER 10: Presidential candidate Ben Carson speaks during Republican Presidential Debate sponsored by Fox Business and the Wall Street Journal at the Milwaukee Theatre November 10, 2015 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. The fourth Republican debate is held in two parts, one main debate for the top eight candidates, and another for four other candidates lower in the current polls. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
Photograph by Scott Olson — Getty Images

Presidential candidate Ben Carson’s two top aides just resigned from his campaign.

Doug Watts and Barry Bennett, formerly Carson’s communications director and campaign manager, resigned Thursday, and according to Watts, the resignation is effective immediately.

In a statement provided to TIME, Watts said, “We respect the candidate and we have enjoyed helping him go from far back in the field to top tier status. Having just announced raising $23m for the 4th Q, more than any other Republican candidate, and passing 1 million contributions and and over 600 k unique donors since March, we are proud of our efforts for Dr Carson and we wish him and his campaign the best of luck.”

Tensions have reportedly been simmering in the Carson camp in recent weeks, as Armstrong Williams, a confidant of Carson’s who does not have an official role in the campaign, has taken on a larger presence in the media. In late December, Carson warned of a shakeup in his campaign, telling the Associated Press, “Every single thing is on the table. I’m looking carefully.”

Williams said at the time, in an apparent dig at campaign staff, “Dr. Carson is back in charge, and I’m so happy to see that.”

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