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Ben Carson speaks during an interview with The Associated Press at the Republican National Convention, Monday, July 18, 2016, in Cleveland, Ohio. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Dr. Ben Carson turns down offer to serve in Trump administration


According to Dr. Ben Carson's business manager Armstrong Williams, Dr. Ben Carson will not serve in President-elect Donald Trump's administration. 

Williams told Circa, that "the President-elect offered him anything he wanted to do. But in the end he didn't want anything." Adding that "his background didn't prepare him to run a federal agency."

A separate source said that the Carson conversation was about a position as Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS).

In a Facebook post, Carson said his decision "nothing to do with the complexity of the job."

Opportunities not limited to HHS

Williams stressed that Carson was not limited to HHS, but could have picked any role. Carson was seen as a favorite for HHS -- he was an early backer of Trump, he's a world-renowned physician and he has staunchly, consistently opposed Obamacare. Whoever runs HHS will be tasked with dismantling the Affordable Care Act.

Williams indicated that Carson is putting country first. "[Carson can] best serve the President outside the administration," Williams said.

Former Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson speaks after announcing he will endorse Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, during a news conference at the Mar-A-Lago Club, Friday, March 11, 2016, in Palm Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)

Despite being ridiculed by Trump during the primaries, Carson endorsed Trump in March. He also spoke at the Republican National Convention and gave Trump a tour of his boyhood neighborhood in Detroit this past September. 

A history of opposing Obamacare

Carson famously rebuked Obamacare during the 2013 National Prayer Breakfast, with Obama sitting a few feet away. That speech catapulted him onto the political stage, and even prompted the Wall Street Journal editorial board to urge him to run for president. 

During his campaign, Carson pushed for the repeal of Obamacare and advocated replacing it with health savings accounts. Like Carson, Trump also campaigned on the promise to repeal Obamacare. 

Who is Carson?

Carson grew up in poverty as the child of an illiterate single mother. He went on to graduate from Yale University and the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor Medical School. At 33, Johns Hopkins named him the youngest chief of pediatric neurosurgery in the nation. Carson is famous for separating twins conjoined at the head.

His medical feats lead Carson to write a best-selling book, "Gifted Hands," as well as have a biographical movie of made of him starring Cuba Gooding, Jr.

Prone to gaffes

Carson's entry into politics was a rocky one -- he was gaffe-prone in interviews, at one point he said that prison teaches men to be homosexual. "A lot of people who go into prison go into prison straight -- and when they come out, they're gay," Carson said on CNN last year. Carson later apologized for his comments.

He got into hot water for comparing homosexuals to pedophiles and people who participate in bestiality, as well as comparing abortion to slavery. 

Led Trump in polls, for a while

Carson was also attacked during the campaign for receiving payments from Mannatech, a health company that settled with the Texas government for making dubious health claims about its products. Trump also went after Carson, comparing him to a child molester.

Despite setbacks during his campaign, Carson was the only one of Trump's primary opponents to lead him in the polls before dropping out, according to the Real Clear Politics polling average.

What is HHS?

HHS oversees the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the Food and Drug Administration, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the National Institutes of Health and other health care agencies. 

Trump is racing to appoint 4,000 people to work in his administration. So far, he has named RNC Chair Reince Priebus as chief of staff and former Breitbart CEO Steve Bannon as chief strategist and senior counselor.

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