Regulatory Commissars

Carson Waffles on Race-Based Housing Rule

The HUD secretary once hammered the Obama-era rule. Now he says he'll "reinterpret" it rather than rescind it.

Political Editors · Jul. 21, 2017

In 2015, Barack Obama’s Department of Housing and Urban Development sought to cement race as the primary guiding principle behind the Fair Housing Act via the Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing rule (AFFH). This imposition by Big Brother was soundly criticized by many conservatives, including the good Doctor Ben Carson, who is now HUD secretary. He once derided the rule as doomed to fail for its attempt to “legislate racial equality.”

Fast forward two years and now Dr. Carson finds himself as the head of HUD with the power to rescind Obama’s onerous AFFH rule, but he has decided to leave it in place. This week, Carson reiterated that he rejected the “extra manipulation and cost” created by the AFFH rule, and he then stated, “So we just have to reinterpret it, that’s all.” Why not just get rid of it? Carson pointed to a ruling by the Supreme Court, saying, “I probably am not going to mess with something the Supreme Court has weighed in on. In terms of interpreting what it means, that’s where the concentration is going to be.” And how would Carson reinterpret it? He didn’t say. Several congressional Republicans, led by Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT), have called on Carson to end the rule.

Carson’s waffling on this issue looks bad, especially on a rule that was strategically designed as justification for a race-based, politically motivated government power grab. Reinterpretation of the AFFH rule implies that Carson has embraced the greater authority the rule grants him even though he has rejected Obama’s racist aims in creating it. Instead, Carson needs to be draining the DC swamp of leftist social engineering regulations like the AFFH that have proven to do nothing but limit Americans’ Liberty.

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