Ben Carson Lied About His Dining Room Set For No Reason

Kevork Djansezian  Getty Images North America

"I have requested that the order be canceled".

Well according to emails obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request and reported by CNN, Carson and his wife hand-picked the pricey furniture.

"I was as surprised as anyone to find out that a $31,000 dining set had been ordered", said Carson in a statement to CNN, earlier this month.

In an email dated August 8, 2017, Coressel invited Candy Carson to meet with a designer for ideas on "redecorating the Secretary's office and bringing in new furniture". "My wife also looked at catalogs and wanted to be sure that the color of the chair fabric of any set that was chosen matched the rest of the decour [sic]". Candy Carson was apparently so uninterested in the whole thing that Jacie Coressel was "still waiting" to hear from her a day after her initial email. It cites "printouts of the furniture the Secretary and Mrs. Carson picked out".

"Are you available on any of those dates and would you like to come in and have input on the redecorating?" it asks her. "We will find another solution for the furniture replacement".

Emails show Candy Carson, the wife of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson, was involved in the purchase of a tax-payer funded $31,000 dining room set for the secretary's office.

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The furniture hunt did not end in February, however: an aging conference table and its accompanying chairs used for Carson's private lunches with guests proved so problematic that his deputies made a decision to order a replacement at the cost of $31,561. But when HUD was confronted by the high price, Carson's spokesperson denied that the secretary had no knowledge of the furniture being bought in the first place. The company confirmed a few days after CNN reported the purchase that the agency officially canceled the order on March 1.

"I believe Allison has print outs of the furniture the Secretary and Mrs. Carson picked out", Rodriguez wrote, referring to Allison Mills, Carson's executive assistant.

The furniture was quoted as being $24,666, but receipts show the final bill was almost $7,000 more after delivery and installation charges in addition to a small up-charge for the upholstered chairs.

"Neither of them knew this purchase was being made", the spokesman said at that time. The set included a Newport dining table with a mahogany finish along with upholstered chairs.

The spokesman, who asked that his name not be used, even denied that Candy Carson had any interest in redecorating the suite.

Foster wrote in a February 22 email that she had to answer "endless questions about why I won't fund more than the $5000 limit" for redecorating the office.

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