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Secretary Ben Carson. Photo: Mark Wilson / Getty Images

The Housing and Urban Development Department, headed by Secretary Ben Carson, is changing its mission statement by possibly removing words like "free from discrimination," and emphasizing "self-sufficiency," the Washington Post reports. The Post reports that career staff at the agency were not consulted.

Why it matters: HUD is responsible for ensuring equal access to housing. HUD spokesman Raffi Williams told the Post that the revised statement is a "modest" attempt clarify what the agency's work includes, but president of the National Low Income Housing Coalition, Diane Yentel, says it shows Carson doesn't "take discrimination in the housing market seriously."

  • Per the Post, the new statement being proposed is: "HUD’s mission is to ensure Americans have access to fair, affordable housing and opportunities to achieve self-sufficiency, thereby strengthening our communities and nation.”
  • Williams also told the Post that any mission statement from HUD "will embody the principle of fairness as a central element," and that the agency "will always be committed to ensuring inclusive housing, free from discrimination for all Americans."
  • This change has reportedly been "in the works for a couple of months."

Go deeper: U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services is also planning to change its mission statement, excluding the phrase "a nation of immigrants."

Go deeper

GOP implosion: Trump threats, payback

Spotted last week on a work van in Evansville, Ind. Photo: Sam Owens/The Evansville Courier & Press via Reuters

The GOP is getting torn apart by a spreading revolt against party leaders for failing to stand up for former President Trump and punish his critics.

Why it matters: Republican leaders suffered a nightmarish two months in Washington. Outside the nation’s capital, it's even worse.

Erica Pandey, author of @Work
2 hours ago - Economy & Business

The limits of Biden's plan to cancel student debt

Data: New York Fed Consumer Credit Panel/Equifax; Chart: Axios Visuals

There’s a growing consensus among Americans who want President Biden to cancel student debt — but addressing the ballooning debt burden is much more complicated than it seems.

Why it matters: Student debt is stopping millions of Americans from buying homes, buying cars and starting families. And the crisis is rapidly getting worse.

Why made-for-TV moments matter during the pandemic

Photo illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photos: Erin Schaff-Pool, Biden Inaugural Committee via Getty Images

In a world where most Americans are isolated and forced to laugh, cry and mourn without friends or family by their side, viral moments can offer critical opportunities to unite the country or divide it.

Driving the news: President Biden's inauguration was produced to create several made-for-social viral moments, a tactic similar to what the Democratic National Committee and the Biden campaign pulled off during the Democratic National Convention.