Senate confirms Carson to lead HUD

The Senate on Thursday confirmed Ben Carson to be President Trump’s secretary of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
 
The final vote was 58-41. Carson needed a simple majority to be approved.
 
Democratic Sens. Joe ManchinJoe ManchinWith extreme gerrymanders locking in, Biden needs to make democracy preservation job one Five reasons for Biden, GOP to be thankful this season White House looks to rein in gas prices ahead of busy travel season MORE (W.Va.), Mark WarnerMark Robert WarnerFive Senate Democrats reportedly opposed to Biden banking nominee The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by ExxonMobil - House to vote on Biden social spending bill after McCarthy delay Overnight Defense & National Security — Presented by Boeing — US mulls Afghan evacuees' future MORE (Va.), Heidi HeitkampMary (Heidi) Kathryn HeitkampVirginia loss lays bare Democrats' struggle with rural voters Washington's oldest contact sport: Lobbyists scrum to dilute or kill Democrats' tax bill Progressives prepare to launch counterattack in tax fight MORE (N.D.), Sherrod BrownSherrod Campbell BrownFive Senate Democrats reportedly opposed to Biden banking nominee Senate Democrats call on Biden to push for COVID-19 vaccine patent waivers at WTO Biden sidesteps Fed fight, disappointing progressive allies MORE (Ohio), Jon TesterJonathan (Jon) TesterFive Senate Democrats reportedly opposed to Biden banking nominee Dark money group spent 0M on voter turnout in 2020 Biden to speak on economy Tuesday, with Fed pick imminent MORE (Mont.), Joe DonnellyJoseph (Joe) Simon DonnellyBiden to have audience with pope, attend G20 summit Biden taps former Indiana Sen. Donnelly as ambassador to Vatican Republicans may regret restricting reproductive rights MORE (Ind.) and Independent Sen. Angus KingAngus KingAmazon, Facebook, other large firms would pay more under proposed minimum tax, Warren's office says Senators look to defense bill to move cybersecurity measures Energy information chief blames market for high fuel prices MORE (Maine) joined all Republicans in backing Carson.
 
 
The former neurosurgeon wasn’t a top target for Senate Democrats. 
 
But Carson’s nomination and lack of government experience has divided the caucus. 
 
 
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But red-state Democrats, including Manchin, Donnelly and Heitkamp, voted with Republicans to support him. 
 
Republicans have rallied around Carson’s nomination. 
 
 
“[He] can begin bringing much needed reforms to the Department of Housing and Urban Development,” he said from the Senate floor. 
 
 
“Once Dr. Carson is confirmed we can begin working on several important issues under HUD’s jurisdiction,” he said. 
 
 
Warren defended her committee vote amid backlash from progressive outside groups, writing on a Facebook post: "Yes, he is not the nominee I wanted. But 'the nominee I wanted' is not the test.”
 
Warren didn’t vote for Carson during the Senate’s procedural vote on Wednesday, and she voted against him again Thursday.
 
Carson’s nomination has been largely free of controversy. 
 
Senators only questioned Carson for 2 1/2 hours during his confirmation hearing, in contrast to more controversial picks — including Attorney General Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsThose predicting Facebook's demise are blowing smoke If bitcoin is 'digital gold,' it should be taxed like gold The metaverse is coming — society should be wary MORE — who faced hours of intense grilling. 
 
Democrats have voiced public skepticism about Carson’s qualifications, noting that the onetime presidential candidate also previously questioned whether he was fit to run a federal agency.
 
"Having me as a federal bureaucrat would be like a fish out of water," he said in November, on the heels of rumors that he would be considered for Trump's Cabinet.
 
Carson, a conservative Christian, also received some criticism for suggesting that LGBT Americans don’t deserve “extra rights.” 
 
But neither impeded his nomination. Crapo thanked Brown from the Senate floor for being willing to work with him to get Carson to the Senate floor for a vote. 
 
It is unclear how Carson will shape the agency. 
 
He told lawmakers in his confirmation hearing that he wants to have "listening sessions" with housing officials around the country. He was also noncommittal about upholding an Obama-era rule that beefed up a fair housing law.