U.S. Senate approves Carson for housing secretary job

U.S. President Donald Trump speaks with Ben Carson, his nominee to lead the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), after their visit to the National Museum of African American History and Culture on the National Mall in Washington, U.S., February 21, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Senate voted on Thursday to confirm retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson as secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) in President Donald Trump's Cabinet.

Carson, who ran for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination and later endorsed Trump, becomes the only African-American in the Trump Cabinet. The Senate confirmed his appointment by a vote of 58 to 41.

During his confirmation hearing in January, Carson, 65, told the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs that he would monitor any potential conflicts of interest between his agency and properties controlled by Trump.

He also told lawmakers he was fit to lead HUD, an agency whose mission includes helping the poor get housing, even though he has sometimes criticized its work.

(Reporting by Eric Walsh; Editing by Paul Simao)

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