Retired neurosurgeon and former Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson has turned down an offer to join President-elect Donald Trump's cabinet. Carson was offered the role of Secretary of the Health and Human Services but declined.
According to Circa, Armstrong Williams, Carson’s business manager, confirmed the decision on Nov. 15.
"[T]he President-elect offered him anything he wanted to do,” Williams said. “But in the end he didn't want anything." He added that "his background didn't prepare him to run a federal agency."
"Dr. Carson feels he has no government experience, he's never run a federal agency,” Williams said, according to The Hill. “The last thing he would want to do was take a position that could cripple the presidency."
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Since dropping out of the Republican primaries, Carson has served as a close adviser to Trump, including a role in his transition team, reports Reuters.
In May, Carson briefly served on Trump’s vice presidential selection committee. He reportedly stepped aside shortly thereafter to focus on a meeting between Trump and Republican Speaker of the House Paul Ryan.
“What Trump wanted from Carson were names of who he would recommend for a potential candidate,” Williams told The Daily Beast in May. “He was among several other people making recommendations. … Once those names were submitted, they decided to have [Corey] Lewandowski head up.”
“That vetting process is a long process and a tedious process,” Williams added. “Now Carson is involved in making sure that everything goes well with Thursday’s meeting [with Speaker Ryan].”
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According to Reuters, Carson will remain in Trump’s circle of advisers, but will not hold an active role in the federal government.
Williams concluded, "[Dr. Carson’s] life has not prepared him to be a Cabinet secretary".