Ben Carson was a reluctant recruit to the Trump administration. He had to be asked several times.
“I have a surgical personality. Surgeons like to get stuff done,” he said with the quiet understatement of someone who has separated conjoined twins. “We don’t like to talk about it forever or get bogged down with bureaucracy.”
But the more he thought about heading the Department of Housing and Urban Development, the more he realized there was a job to be done.
Four years later, the 69-year-old is proud of his achievements in cleaning up a muddled bureaucracy, overhauling an antiquated IT system, and developing a string of programs shot through with the Carson brand of self-reliant conservatism. He even has a new-found respect for government workers. And after leaving office, he plans to work on some of the same issues with a new think tank to foster bipartisan agreement when he leaves office.
For a surgeon used to