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HUD secretary Carson to leave after 2020 election

Ben Carson, secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), revealed in a Monday evening interview that he intends to vacate the post after the 2020 election.

BenCarson“I will certainly finish out this term,” Carson told conservative news channel Newsmax TV. "I would be interested in returning to the private sector because I think you have just as much influence, maybe more, there.”

Carson, a retired neurosurgeon who launched a failed presidential bid in 2016, was an unconventional choice to head HUD by President Donald Trump, the man who defeated him on the Republican ticket. With scant prior experience in the housing sector, Carson’s arrival was met with both congratulations and skepticism.

His tenure has invited further controversy, including an investigation last year into the appointment of Carson’s son to steer a Baltimore “listening tour” that violated federal ethics rules — an appointment that drew warnings from HUD attorneys. That incident was followed by Congressional questioning after an ex-HUD staffer alleged that Carson was spending taxpayer money to redecorate his office with extravagant purchases.

HUD policies and efficiency under Carson also have come under fire. Many have slammed Carson for scaling back Obama-era regulations designed to combat racial bias and for failing to wield HUD authority to investigate housing discrimination, unlike previous HUD secretaries from both parties. Carson’s signature initiative, the launch of one-stop social-services facilities dubbed “Envision Centers,” has yet to take flight despite being announced this past June, and an investigation by NBC News discovered that the share of HUD properties that failed their most recent inspection in 2018 rose 30 percent from 2016.

Carson, in a statement released by HUD on Monday, remained steadfast that the department was on the right track.

“President Donald J. Trump hired me to do a job as the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, and we are making tremendous progress ensuring our most vulnerable citizens are empowered with a path to self-sufficiency,” Carson said in the statement. “I always stand ready to serve this great president and the United States of America." 


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