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Monday, December 05, 2016

Ben Carson is nominated to be the next HUD Secretary

Media is reporting that Trump's HUD pick, Ben Carson, will undo Obama's fair housing legacy (e.g., Obama's rule on local communities assessing patterns of racial & income discrimination existing in housing, amongst others).

They cite to what Ben Carson wrote in the Washing Times:

These government-engineered attempts to legislate racial equality create consequences that often make matters worse. There are reasonable ways to use housing policy to enhance the opportunities available to lower-income citizens, but based on the history of failed socialist experiments in this country, entrusting the government to get it right can prove downright dangerous.

Yet, remember fair housing is enforced on the local level of government and the federal government provides merely a floor of rights, not a ceiling. As stated in the Fair Housing Act, at 42 USC 3615:

Nothing in this subchapter shall be construed to invalidate or limit any law of a State or political subdivision of a State, or of any other jurisdiction in which this subchapter shall be effective, that grants, guarantees, or protects the same rights as are granted by this subchapter; but any law of a State, a political subdivision, or other such jurisdiction that purports to require or permit any action that would be a discriminatory housing practice under this subchapter shall to that extent be invalid.

So, states like New York, who provide additional protections to the federal government, will continue to protect society's most vulnerable irrespective of what the federal government does. As Governor Cuomo said in a speech on February 14, 2016:
This state is about acceptance of all by all; discrimination of none by none. Those are the rules that we live by in this state,  ... if you are looking for the progressive future and you want to know how to deal with tough problems, like racial unrest and cultural diversity, you look to the great state of new york.