Scott Pruitt’s Resignation Is Bad News for Ben Carson

Carson in 2015. Photograph by Gage Skidmore.

On Thursday DC said goodbye to Scott Pruitt, President Donald Trump’s embattled EPA administrator.

The serial big spender resigned in the afternoon, via Trump tweet. While his decision means he may once again eat lunch in peace, other cabinet members who’ve had a rough relationship with controversy and their department funds could be sweating. Enter Housing and Urban Development Secretary Dr. Ben Carson, whose enthusiastic office spending included a $31,000 dining set.

Here are five reasons why Pruitt’s exit may turn the spotlight straight on Dr. Carson:

1. Carson could purchase more lavish furnishings to protect his staff from “dangerous, old” furniture (the actual rationale behind the hefty purchase.) According to the Guardian, Carson spent upward of $165,000 on “lounge furniture” for HUD headquarters.

2. HUD is allegedly becoming a family business. Both Carson’s wife, Candy, and his son Ben Jr. have reportedly had their hands all over organization and scheduling within the agency. An email obtained by CNN shows Candy pushing for a meeting between Department of Transportation secretary Elaine Chao and her son.

3. In February, the White House reportedly reached the end of its rope with “embarrassing” stories about the former surgeon.

4. Most recently, housing advocates have sued Carson for rolling back an Obama-era anti-discrimination rule.

5. Carson sometimes acts publicly peculiar, like when he walked off a live television interview to locate his airplane luggage. He’s also said that the pyramids of Egypt were grain silos. So there’s that.

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Brittany Shepherd joined Washingtonian as a staff writer in June 2018. She previously covered the White House for Independent Journal Review. She currently lives in Navy Yard.