It has long been a peeve of mine that Donald Trump seems to put either no thought into his nomination process for any given position, or that when he does give it thought, it is to ensure that his nominee will piss off the most people.
If you look even at his early Cabinet, for example, you can tell the difference between the two: Betsy DeVos, Trump’s pick for Education, clearly took some thought — and she’s precisely the opposite of the kind of person you want in charge of public schools. But she’s the sister of Trump’s kid’s friend and she’s got a parking garage on her yacht to put her mini yacht inside, so she got the spot.
Ben Carson didn’t trash-talk Trump too much during the Republican primary in 2016, so he got a spot. He’s leading HUD because the word “urban” is right in there, so Trump just knew he needed a black guy. No thought to vetting at all.
Today Trump seemed to confirm his “casual” nomination style to reporters outside the White House after the announcement that his former pick for Director of National Intelligence had withdrawn from consideration when someone asked him if Congressman John Ratcliffe had been vetted at all before Trump nominated him.
Now, before the video, let’s just get it straight: Trump nominated Ratcliffe because the Representative from Texas’ 4th District sits on both the House Judiciary and the House Intelligence Committees, and Trump watched him ask Robert Mueller questions all day the other day, in both hearings — the kind of questions Trump liked. Trump couldn’t have picked John Ratcliffe out of a lineup of brown-haired middle-aged guys if you promised him a lap dance from an illegal Swedish immigrant.
But the video shows how Trump doesn’t take any of it seriously in any way whatsoever, telling reporters he gives a name of a nominee to the press “and you vet for me” — meaning he finds out at the same time as everyone in the general public whether the person he’s just nominated is a liar or a criminal or a wife-beater or a tax cheat. Trump doesn’t do homework, he just lets others figure things out and then decides how hard he wants to defend his choices.
Featured image via screen capture
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