The most inexperienced, uninformed and unprepared President-elect in our nation’s history, has chosen to surround himself with a rogues gallery of equally unqualified Cabinet appointments.
Instead of choosing candidates with a wealth of experience, Donald Trump has picked people of great wealth. Like Betsy DeVos, the billionaire chosen to lead the Department of Education who has fought against public education her entire career, and who is not an educator, but a glorified lobbyist for charter schools in Michigan.
And Trump has picked people who are openly opposed to the very purpose of the agency they were chosen to lead. Like Scott Pruitt, the climate change denier, who has been a champion of the fossil fuel industry. And Andy Puzder, the Secretary of Labor nominee who opposes increasing the minimum wage, expanding overtime or anything else that actually benefits workers.
And then there are those who know absolutely nothing about the department. Like Ben Carson, Trump’s pick for Housing and Urban Development, who said he’s right for the position because he once lived in a city. So a department with a budget of more than $40 billion and thousands of employees, will be in the hands of someone with no administrative experience and no knowledge about public housing and other vital urban affairs. And who turned down an appointment to head the Department of Health and Human Services, because he said he could best serve from “outside the administration”. At least in that position, Dr. Carson would have had a vague connection to the field. But he has shown repeatedly that you don’t have to be a brain surgeon to be a brain surgeon.
The parade of incompetent candidates continued today with the announcement that Rick “Ooops” Perry was the pick for the Department of Energy, which was one of the three agencies he said he wanted to abolish, except that was the one he forgot during a debate. Not only doesn’t Perry have a clue what the department does, he doesn’t even think it should exist.
And finally Rex Tillerson, who is slated to become the nation’s top diplomat, has no diplomatic experience. But he does have plenty of conflicts of interest, which is probably why Trump can relate to him. As Secretary of State, Tillerson will be dealing with Russia, as someone who has lobbied against sanctions for Russia’s crimes in Crimea and the Ukraine. As CEO of Exxon Mobil, Tillerson’s only interest has been to see that its shareholders benefit from his lucrative business dealings with his good friend Vladimir Putin.
A President is entitled to work with people whose views align with his. But not if they are in direct opposition to the mission of the Cabinet agencies he has picked them to lead. And especially not if they have absolutely no relevant experience or expertise to carry out the incredibly essential responsibilities of the job.