January 30, 2017

Kaine To Oppose Nominations Of Dr. Ben Carson And Congressman Mick Mulvaney

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Tim Kaine released the following statement today on the nominations of Dr. Ben Carson to be Secretary of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and Congressman Mick Mulvaney to be Director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB):

“I will oppose Dr. Ben Carson’s nomination. As a former mayor, I know how critical the success of HUD can be for our work to reduce the impact of urban poverty in Richmond and other cities. Putting someone in charge with zero experience in housing policy or urban development sends a message that the Department’s work is a low priority. I strongly object to this.  I was a fair housing lawyer for 17 years, and HUD’s work in the field is absolutely essential. Dr. Carson has in the past criticized the Department’s work in this area as ‘failed socialism’ and ‘mandated social engineering.’ That causes me grave concern over his commitment to addressing this serious issue.

“At his confirmation hearing, Dr. Carson suggested that HUD’s budget should be cut at a time when only one in four families eligible for federal housing assistance gets the help they need. I am also concerned about the lack of a clear and strong commitment by Dr. Carson to preventing conflicts of interest between HUD and President Trump’s finances, which include an investment in a public housing complex.

“Dr. Carson is an accomplished physician. Had he been nominated for Surgeon General or another key position that took advantage of his medical qualifications, this would be a different matter. But just as some positions demand medical expertise, HUD deserves a leader who embraces the Department’s mission and possesses the skills needed to run the nation’s largest housing and community development programs.

"I will oppose Congressman Mick Mulvaney’s nomination to be Director of the Office of Management and Budget.  I am troubled by his continued opposition to bipartisan budget efforts to roll back the harmful effects of sequestration, even when such cuts have threatened our national security. Congressman Mulvaney also has no qualms about using the full faith and credit of the United States as ‘leverage’ in achieving draconian budget policies, despite the fact that such debt ceiling showdowns have hurt our economy and our nation’s credit rating while costing taxpayers money.  Finally, Congressman Mulvaney has a record of support for policies that unfairly target federal employees, which will do nothing improve government performance or efficiency.

“At his confirmation hearing, his unwillingness to admit climate change is an urgent problem also proved to me that he would be unable to put his ideology aside as head of OMB. For all these reasons, I will oppose his nomination.”

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