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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Ben Carson is taking some heat after referring to slaves as immigrants.

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Carson was speaking to employees on Monday when he made the comment on his first day at the department.

“There were other immigrants who came here in the bottom of slave ships. Worked even harder and even harder for less. But they too had a dream that one day their sons, daughter, grandchildren might pursue prosperity and happiness sin this land,” said Carson.

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The Anne Frank Center has condemned Carson’s comments.

Carson, a retired neurosurgeon was confirmed and sworn in as HUD Secretary last week. He has never held public office before.

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