Ben Carson made headlines after Donald Trump won the election by revealing that he did not want a role in his administration. That’s why it came as a massive surprise when Trump announced this week that he is appointing Carson as his Secretary of Housing and Urban Development.
The Washington Times reported that Trump’s transition team made the announcement early Monday morning.
“I am thrilled to nominate Dr. Ben Carson as our next Secretary of the US Department of Housing and Urban Development,” Trump said in a statement, according to CNN.
Conservative Tribune reported that Carson was originally in the running to become head of the Department of Health and Human Services, but he turned this position down.
“Dr. Carson was never offered a specific position, but everything was open to him,” Armstrong Williams, Carson’s close friend and business manager, said in mid-November. “Dr. Carson feels he has no government experience, he’s never run a federal agency. The last thing he would want to do was take a position that could cripple the presidency.”
Last week, however, Carson indicated he had changed his mind about joining the Trump administration in a Facebook post.
“After serious discussions with the Trump transition team, I feel that I can make a significant contribution particularly to making our inner cities great for everyone,” Carson said. “We have much work to do in strengthening every aspect of our nation and ensuring that both our physical infrastructure and our spiritual infrastructure is solid.”
Two weeks ago, Trump wrote on Twitter that he was “seriously considering” making Carson the head of HUD.
I am seriously considering Dr. Ben Carson as the head of HUD. I’ve gotten to know him well–he’s a greatly talented person who loves people!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 22, 2016
Since Trump prioritized redeveloping and ending rampant violence in inner cities during his campaign, the head of HUD is one of the most important positions in his administration.
“The violence. The death. The lack of education. No jobs. We’re going to work with the African-American community and we’re going to solve the problem of the inner city,” Trump described it at a rally in October. “We’re going to bring safety back. You can’t walk out the street, you buy a loaf of bread and you end up getting shot. So we’re going to work very strongly with the African-American community.”
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