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Signed up: Ben Carson to officially enter presidential race in Arizona

(AP Photo/Rainier Ehrhardt)

PHOENIX — Dr. Ben Carson will officially submit his presidential candidacy paperwork in Arizona, the state secretary of state said Friday.

Michelle Reagan said in a release that the neurosurgeon is expected to file his petition about 2 p.m. Saturday at her office in downtown Phoenix.

Carson has emerged as the Republican frontrunner in recent weeks, surpassing mogul and television personality Donald Trump. A poll conducted last month showed Carson had 25.5 percent of Arizona Republican support, while Trump had 24.8.

In September, Trump led Arizona voters by about 8 percentage points.

Trump is also trailing Carson in some national polls.

“Well, I don’t get it,” a confounded Trump said in October when asked to explain why the preference polls he touts every time he’s campaigning no longer show him as the unquestioned leader of the GOP’s 2016 presidential field.

A Carson speaking event in the Phoenix area was attended by more than 10,000 people in August. He spoke on a wide variety of topics including education, taxes, the national debt and immigration.

After his speaking engagement, Carson toured the border with Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu and sat in on a detailed briefing, which included discussion of drug smuggling and scouts for cartels who live in caves on mountains in Pinal County.

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