Before he became the 45th president, Donald Trump bragged about his ability to hire the very best people.
In the nearly 13-months that he’s been in office, President Trump has surrounded himself with a revolving door of questionable, comedic, and sometimes, downright criminal characters. Since taking office, there have been 34 resignations or firings.
But please, tell me more about his brilliant hiring abilities.
The most recent resignation, that of former White House staff secretary, Rob Porter, is yet another indication of this administration’s inability to either properly vet potential hires, or worse, look beyond abuses in their past. Both are concerning because they are evidence of shoddy governance and willful ignorance in the nation’s highest office.
My colleague, Susan Wright, detailed what Porter’s former wives suffered. This guy is twice-divorced and both of his previous spouses seemingly dealt with a poor excuse for a man who not only possessed a horrible temper but also physically assaulted them.
Seems like a great individual to bring into the administration, am I right?
And it looks as if attempts to smooth everything over was aided by two still-employed White House personalities. Chief of Staff John Kelly – who knew of these abuse allegations – is the first.
GOP Senator John Kennedy of Louisiana had some harsh words for him.
Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) said Thursday that White House chief of staff John Kelly made a “bad decision” to retain staff secretary Rob Porter despite knowing of domestic abuse allegations against him.
“If you want to serve the public, particularly as a member of a president’s staff, I don’t care who you are, even if you’re a Rhodes Scholar, you can’t beat the hell out of your spouse,” Kennedy said.
“I think Gen. Kelly has done an extraordinary job as chief of staff to President Trump. I think he’s a good man, and sometimes good people make bad decisions.”
In an initial statement after the allegations against Porter surfaced, Kelly called the aide a “man of true integrity and honor” and said that he is “proud to serve alongside him.”
The second individual is none other than White House communications director, and Rob’s current girlfriend, Hope Hicks.
White House communications director Hope Hicks, who has been in a romantic relationship with Rob Porter, was involved in crafting the response to the allegations of domestic abuse leveled against him, sources say https://t.co/4qKcRj1b9p pic.twitter.com/VT6jhDj8Ii
— CNN (@CNN) February 8, 2018
I don’t have many positive things to say about Hope Hicks, the communications director who we barely hear a peep from, who seems protected because of her youth and/or knowledge, and who goes to bat for her current flame when she should just shut the door on him. But then again, she’s part of that “very best” pool of employees.
Porter was close to John Kelly and also assisted the president. Sorry, but that requires at least some sort of stand-up character even if the man you’re helping, the president himself, is a disreputable person in the first place.
Shouldn’t we ask more of these administrations? Shouldn’t we require the best sort of people, and not just those who fit Trump’s definition of what constitutes “good”?
If you hit a woman, you have no business being a part of our government.
That should be a bipartisan, common sense belief. There is no defense of that behavior or anyone who hid this info to protect him. This is not difficult.
— Josh Jordan (@NumbersMuncher) February 8, 2018
Yes, this is something we should all agree on. However, a large swath of the electorate, those starry-eyed individuals who breathlessly voted for Donald Trump, were more enamored with the idea of a Republican in the White House than anything else. Good character and respect for women be damned!
I mean, as long as the GOP wins.
Just wait, all of this will be defended by the usual sycophants who yell “but Gorsuch!” or “but tax cuts!” or some other talking point that assuages their sense of concern (if they have any) about not only the character of the man in the Oval Office but those who surround him.
Remember when we had some individuals of actual character running for the GOP nomination? I do. But we just had to go with the guy who makes GOPers feel alive again.
Make America Great Again? Hardly.