Politics

Elizabeth Warren Flips, Decides To Support Ben Carson

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Thomas Phippen Associate Editor
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Massachusetts Democratic Sen. Elizabeth Warren decided to support Dr. Ben Carson as secretary of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) after harsh questioning in confirmation hearings earlier this month.

Warren’s support, as well as the support of fellow Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown, means Carson was unanimously approved by the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Tuesday. Carson must now be approved by the entire Senate.

Warren said that though “I continue to have concerns about Dr. Carson’s inexperience in the field and his comments on poverty and government dependency,” she supports him as the next HUD secretary, according to a statement Tuesday. (RELATED: Ben Carson: Welfare Perpetuates Poverty, Buys Votes)

Carson’s commitment to implementing HUD policies without discrimination toward gay, lesbian and transgender persons, support ongoing initiatives to combat homelessness, and avoid giving HUD money to Trump-linked companies satisfied Warren, according to the statement.

“In light of these promises, I support Dr. Carson’s nomination, and look forward to working with him to ensure that he follows through on his commitments,” Warren said.

During confirmation hearings Jan. 12, Warren asked Carson if he would use his authority at HUD to line the pockets of President Donald Trump, who is still in the process of divesting his business holdings, many of which involve real estate in New York City and other areas.

Carson said if there were a program that helped poor people, he would not necessarily ban a company linked with Trump to participate.

“If there happens to be an extraordinary program that’s working for millions of people, and it turns out that someone that you’re targeting is going to gain $10 from it, am I going to say, ‘No, the rest of you Americans can’t have it?'” Carson said in the hearing. “I think logic and common sense probably would be the best way.”

“The problem is that you can’t assure us that HUD money — not of $10 varieties but of multimillion-dollar varieties — will not end up in the president-elect’s pockets,” Warren said.

“Dr. Carson is not the nominee I would have chosen to lead HUD, due both to his lack of experience and his often troubling public statements over the last three years,” Brown, the ranking member of the Senate Banking Committee, said in a statement. “But despite my reservations, and my disagreements with some of his positions, I will give Dr. Carson the benefit of the doubt based on commitments he has made to me in person and to this committee.”

Brown, the highest-ranking Democrat on the Banking Committee, said he wold give Carson the benefit of the doubt.

“Dr. Carson is not the nominee I would have chosen to lead HUD, due both to his lack of experience and his often troubling public statements over the last three years,” Brown said in a statement.

“But despite my reservations, and my disagreements with some of his positions, I will give Dr. Carson the benefit of the doubt based on commitments he has made to me in person and to this committee.”

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