Ben Carson just gave liberals one more reason to hate him.
The man who achieved world fame as a gifted neurosurgeon before entering politics already had a target on his back for being a black man with the courage to espouse conservative beliefs.
And now, the secretary for Housing and Urban Development is putting those beliefs into practice.
In an announcement this week, Carson proposed sweeping changes in the country’s subsidized housing program that would raise the percentage of their income housing assistance recipients pay toward rent from 30 percent to 35 percent.
The proposal would also raise the minimum rent payment from $50 to $150.
In an interview with the Townhall website Friday, Carson said it was a way of “moving people along to a position of self-sufficiency.”
And naturally, liberals are screaming.
With the mainstream media giving the idea scathing headlines like “HUD Secretary Ben Carson Wants to raise rents on the poorest of the poor” (Los Angeles Times) and predicting — of course — that it would “hurt single mothers the most” (Washington Post), Carson had to reach out to a conservative-leaning site like Townhall to get his point out to Americans.
The proposal is called the “Making Affordable Housing Work Act,” and it would require congressional action because HUD can’t change rent rules on its own authority, according to CNN Money.
That means it’s already getting hammered by Democrats in Congress — who love nothing more than keeping poor people poor and voting Democrat — but Carson told Townhall he was expecting the resistance.
That doesn’t mean the ideas are bad, he said. With the economic improvements under President Donald Trump, with the nation’s unemployment rate is at an historic low, now is the time to overhaul the system, he said.
“I would only be shocked if someone said yes, please increase my rent,” he told Townhall. “No one’s ever going to say that, but you know we have exemptions for anybody for whom this is going to be a great hardship.”
“For the vast, vast majority of cases it is not going to be.”
But for those who do find themselves kicking in more of their own money to pay for a roof over their own heads, only a liberal Democrat (or a mainstream media reporter) could treat Carson like he just stole Tiny Tim’s crutch.
First of all, the proposals don’t apply to the elderly or physically handicapped, only to able-bodied adults, according to CNN. Americans as a rule have a pretty low tolerance for able-bodied adults who would rather sponge off the taxpayers than provide for their own needs.
Second, as Carson said, the idea of subsidized housing isn’t supposed to be using taxpayer dollars to support families for generations of poverty, but that’s what it’s become.
“If you look at HUD over the last couple decades it’s been mostly about just putting people under a roof and sort of keeping them there,” Carson told Townhall.
“Instead of it being a stepladder it’s become a mode of life and, in many cases, for generation after generation of individuals and I don’t think it’s their fault. I think it’s the fault of the system that has basically sapped the incentive for people to work.”
There’s going to be plenty of shrieking from the left as the proposal makes its way through Congress (and if Democrats win either the House or Senate in November it’s probably as good as dead), but Carson clearly thinks the time to act is now.
“Obviously we’re sensitive to people who have exceptional situations,” he told Townhall. “Obviously, we’re going to take care of those people in an appropriate way but the key thing for people to understand is that doing nothing simply is not an option.”
Liberal Democrats have had a lot of reasons to hate Ben Carson before this: His intelligence, his work ethic, his phenomenal success against the odds make him living evidence that the eternal victimhood preached by progressives is simply a lie.
With this proposal, he just gave them one more.
Truth and Accuracy
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.