Dr. Ben Carson—a man unable to walk onto a debate stage without cocking the whole thing up—was confirmed by the United States Senate as President Donald Trump's secretary for the Housing and Urban Development department on Thursday. The vote was 58–41.
Carson, despite his groundbreaking work in neurosurgery, has never served in public office before, nor has he run anything approximating a government agency responsible for millions of lives and billions of dollars. Not that any of that worried the Republican senators who voted to confirm him on Thursday morning. As Senator Orrin Hatch (R-UT) explained in December, Carson's medical background means he'll get the hang of running a massive federal infrastructure "“so fast their heads will be spinning.”
Most Democrats, of course, disagreed. And even Carson himself wasn't always so sure.
Just before Sen. Hatch's enthusiastic endorsement, a confidant of now-Secretary Carson told the press that "“[he] 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.”
Whether Carson will actually cripple an administration already reeling from incompetence, scandal, and a combination of the two, remains to be seen. Until then, the millions of people who rely on HUD to ensure their homes and communities are actually livable are stuck hoping for the best.