State Roundup, December 5, 2016

CARSON PICKED FOR HUD: President-elect Donald Trump intends to nominate retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson to run the Department of Housing and Urban Development, an unconventional choice that underscores Trump’s willingness to forgo traditional policy expertise in some Cabinet positions to surround himself with allies, Elise Viebeck and Karoun Demirjian report in the Sun.

NEW GOP CHAIR: Dirk Haire, longtime counsel to the Maryland Republican Party and to the campaign of Gov. Larry Hogan, will be the state GOP’s chairman for the next two years. Haire beat runner-up William Campbell by a 4-1 margin in the leadership election Saturday, said Joe Cluster, the state party’s executive director, writes Scott Dance for the Sun. Campbell is a former Amtrak official who has run for state comptroller.