He is a brilliant surgeon. He is a kind man. He is the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development. And, as HUD faces $6.8 billion in budget cuts, he chose to redecorate his office. The new dining table is a custom-made deal that went way over the maximum government allowance of $5,000. As the press got wind, the stories shifted — Dr. Carson knew nothing about the table. Dr. Carson had delegated the redecorating to his wife. Eventually, Dr. Carson recognized the optics and tried to cancel the order. The custom nature of the table may make halting the order difficult. Bright people sometimes get involved in the darndest things.
Congress is investigating the table deal because Mrs. Carson is alleged to have sought the help of an aide in circumventing the $5,000 spending cap. We will be at this one for some time to come.