Trump’s Cabinet is rapidly going from bad to worse:
“President-elect Donald Trump is expected to name fast-food executive Andy Puzder as labor secretary, according to people familiar with the decision.
Mr. Puzder, chief executive of CKE Restaurants Holdings Inc., the parent company of the Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s burger chains, has been a vocal advocate for cutting back regulations he says have stifled growth in the restaurant industry, which represents 10% of the American workforce. …”
Who is Andy Puzder, the CEO of Hardee’s and Carl’s Jr.?
“As part of his cockeyed plan to help working Americans, President-elect Donald Trump has promised to roll back most of President Obama’s regulations in his first 100 days in office. Many of those rollbacks will go through the Labor Department, which under Obama has been implementing a slew of pro-worker rules and executive orders. As Trump fills his cabinet with controversial and, in some cases, preposterous figures, worker advocates anxiously await to see whom Trump will tap for the labor secretary post.
Perhaps the worst-case scenario for low-wage workers would be Andy Puzder, the millionaire CEO of CKE Restaurants, the parent company of the fast-food burger chains Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s, and a harsh conservative critic of Obama. In his frequent op-ed and cable news commentaries, Puzder has championed every aspect of right-wing trickle-down economics. Rolling back taxation and regulation for the rich and corporations will lift the economy, he’s argued, as will getting rid of all those minimum-wage hikes. …”
Reince and Pence are stuffing Trump’s cabinet with extreme conservatives.
Why is this a problem? It is a problem because DeVos for Education, Price for Health and Human Services, Puzder for Labor and Pruitt for the EPA are going to antagonize and energize the Left on all these other issues – public education, healthcare, labor and the environment – which are not our priorities.
Trump ran for president as a populist nationalist on a few issues. He ran as a conventional conservative on many more issues. As I said yesterday on Twitter, I am afraid that Trump is going to squander his political capital by immediately doing a bunch of controversial things that please conservatives. Maybe he will pass a huge tax cut or get into a long drawn out fight to repeal Obamacare. Before we know it the 2018 midterms will be upon us and all these conservative victories will cost us the Senate.
Then it will be aw shucks, I am sorry, but there isn’t much that I can do about trade or immigration because we don’t control Congress anymore. It will be like the Obama administration which disappointed Hispanics, but in reverse. Obama promised them he would pass comprehensive immigration reform, but instead he squandered his first two years by picking a huge fight over healthcare that handed the House to the Republicans. That’s what I am increasingly afraid is going to happen.
The worst case scenario is that President Trump and the Republican Congress immediately pass the huge tax cut and repeal Obamacare while kicking the can down the road on replacing it. Surrounded by hawkish advisers like General Mattis, Trump makes a major mistake and stumbles into a brand new war with Iran, and thereby repeats every folly that led to the repudiation of George W. Bush.
Anyway, what is clear from the last few Cabinet picks is that Trump is picking a fight with the Democrats … on education, on taxes, the environment, labor and healthcare, but is shying away from one on immigration. He is also failing on his promise to #DrainTheSwamp by putting bigtime donors like Tom Ricketts in the Cabinet.
Perhaps I am overreacting, but maybe not? Maybe the rest of the Cabinet will soon look like the Mitt Romney Cabinet. Maybe Mitt Romney himself will be Secretary of State. Maybe the next four years will be consumed with fights over labor and environmental regulations and everything we hoped to accomplish will get put on the backburner?
Note: Before you defend this, ask yourself the following question: does the Cabinet look more like the Trump Cabinet we were expecting, or the Ted Cruz Cabinet? I would say it looks far more like the Ted Cruz Cabinet across the board.