WASHINGTON (AP) — Housing Secretary Ben Carson, beneath blaze afterwards his appointment ordered a $31,000 dining set, told a House console Tuesday that he larboard appliance purchasing decisions to his wife.
Carson said that he was blind of the purchase, and canceled it as anon as he abstruse about it in account reports. But emails appear by an accountability alignment aftermost anniversary advance that Carson and his wife, Candy Carson, both played a role in selecting the furniture.
On Wednesday, Carson told a House Appropriations subcommittee that he and his wife looked at appliance catalogs together. But “the prices were above what I capital to pay,” he said. Carson added, “I fabricated it bright that didn’t assume appropriate to me.”
Carson said he again put his wife in allegation of appliance selection.
“I larboard it with my wife to advice accept something,” he said, abacus that he “dismissed” himself from the action because he had added important things to do.
Carson said he was abashed back he begin out about the $31,000 amount tag.
“I said, ‘What the heck is that all about?’” he said. “I advised and anon had it canceled. Not that we don’t charge the appliance but I anticipation that was excessive.”
On his wife’s role, Carson said “a appearance and a blush was called by her with the admonition that we were not blessed with the appraisement and they bare to acquisition something. If anybody knew my wife they would apprehend how antic this was, she’s the best frugal actuality in the world.”
Carson told the console that if it were up to him, “my appointment would apparently attending like a hospital cat-and-mouse room.” Carson added that he is “not absolutely big into decorating” but arrive his wife to help.
Carson said he chose to redecorate his appointment with appliance and curtains he begin in HUD’s subbasement, with a absolute advance cost, including new blinds, of $3,500. But Carson said a few months after he was told that the dining allowance bare to be replaced “because bodies were actuality ashore by nails, a armchair burst from somebody sitting in it.”
Carson said his agents acquainted that the dining allowance table was “a accessories issue, not a decorating issue,” in acknowledgment to why his agents did not acquaint Congress of the purchase, which exceeded the $5,000 cap.
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