Former Trump Cabinet Members: Where Are They Now?


Photograph-Illustration: Intelligencer; Pictures: Getty Pictures

Does President Biden have a Commerce secretary? I’m going to imagine sure, however this individual has but to do one thing so villainous and/or astonishingly corrupt that I would like to fret about them frequently. (Thanks, Gina Raimondo!) The identical can’t be mentioned of former president Donald Trump’s Cupboard members, who merely couldn’t cease getting investigated for ethics violations; for actually falling asleep throughout conferences; and for losing taxpayer cash on private jets, lavish office furniture, and customized commemorative coins. Now that they’re gone, we are able to lastly flip our consideration to extra substantive government matters.

However maybe you’re curious. If somebody needed to spherical up these people for a Suicide Squad–model authorities process pressure (led, naturally, by Suicide Squad executive producer Steve Mnuchin), the place would we discover them? Right here’s an replace on their zany and vaguely unscrupulous publish–White Home antics.

Again in February, the previous Housing and City Growth secretary based the American Cornerstone Institute. This assume tank, which Carson prefers to name a “do tank,” is devoted to discovering “commonsense options to a few of our nation’s greatest issues.”

Clearly, one of many greatest issues dealing with America is its lack of an aggressively partisan group for youths. Thus, the Little Patriots program was born.

“It will likely be one thing just like the Boy Scouts,” Carson told the Washington Submit. “However closely uncovered to the actual historical past of America.”

“You most likely discover when ISIS goes into a spot, they destroy the historical past, they destroy the monuments,” Carson defined. “Historical past is what provides you identification.”

Maybe sometime a U.S. president will regale youngsters with inappropriate stories at a Little Patriots Jamboree. However in the intervening time, Little Patriots aren’t doing any tenting; they’re simply studying about America’s key values — “Religion, Liberty, Group, and Life” — from a free, crudely illustrated on-line curriculum. Simply this preview taught me quite a bit!

Days earlier than leaving workplace, Trump quietly issued a extremely uncommon order that supplied an additional six months of Secret Service safety for his grownup youngsters and three administration officers. Former Treasury secretary Steven Mnuchin has racked up the most important expenses, unsurprisingly. You don’t amass a fortune value an estimated $400 million by not recognizing alternatives to save lots of on non-public safety bills by benefiting from free Secret Service safety. The Washington Submit reports:

The receipts confirmed that brokers spent $114,000 over the six months to lease rooms at a W Resort in Los Angeles, the place Mnuchin has a house.

In addition they adopted Mnuchin on three journeys to the Center East, the place Mnuchin is reportedly searching for to boost cash from sovereign wealth funds for a brand new enterprise known as Liberty Strategic Capital …

Mnuchin’s travels with the Secret Service weren’t all enterprise, nonetheless. Over the six months, the data present three separate journeys to Cabo San Lucas — the Mexican resort, the place Mnuchin had additionally vacationed throughout Trump’s presidency.

To protect Mnuchin throughout these three journeys, the data present, the Secret Service paid $56,000 for resort rooms and $2,000 to lease golf carts.

Mnuchin plans to make use of the $2.5 billion he raised throughout his travels to spend money on the know-how sector, cybersecurity, and “new types of content material,” according to The Hollywood Reporter. It’s not fully clear what the latter phrase means, however “many massive tech corporations are pushing virtual- and augmented-reality {hardware} and content material merchandise and digital gaming.” May that imply an AR model of Me You Insanity, the sex-cannibal comedy Mnuchin’s spouse launched earlier this yr? Let’s maintain our fingers crossed!

Former CIA director and secretary of State Mike Pompeo was so livid at Julian Assange for exposing U.S. national-security secrets and techniques that he spearheaded talks throughout the Trump administration on methods to get revenge. Choices mentioned included kidnapping the WikiLeaks founder from the Ecuadoran embassy in London and even assassinating him — plots that make for a great spy thriller however are unlawful in actual life.

That is among the key takeaways from an explosive report revealed by Yahoo! News in September. It is usually, based on Pompeo, not true … or, effectively, principally fiction.

“There’s items of it which are true,” Pompeo mentioned throughout an look on The Megyn Kelly Present. “We tried to guard American info from Julian Assange and WikiLeaks, completely, sure … We’re not permitted by U.S. regulation to conduct assassinations. We by no means acted in a manner that was inconsistent with that.”

When pressed on whether or not he had thought of assassinating Assange, Pompeo clarified, “We by no means carried out planning to violate U.S. regulation.” However he additionally mentioned the 30 sources who participated within the report “ought to all be prosecuted for talking about labeled exercise” — which, as one of many report’s authors underscored, gained’t work in the event that they’re mendacity.

Previous to turning into Trump’s Transportation secretary, Elaine Chao earned thousands and thousands of {dollars} by serving on the boards of main companies like Dole Meals, Protecting Life, and Wells Fargo. However the Washington Submit reported in April that she and different Trump Cupboard alums had been having a tough time discovering soft touchdown spots after exiting the administration. “The suggestions was ‘It’s too quickly,’” mentioned one of many headhunters concerned in an unsuccessful effort to seek out corporations keen to work with Chao.

Apparently, the sentence for serving within the Trump administration was seven months in company purgatory, not three. In August, Kroger named Chao to its board of administrators.

However ought to a healthful grocery chain actually affiliate itself with somebody who abused her place and workplace workers to spice up her household’s transport enterprise? (That was the conclusion of an inspector basic’s report on Chao, which was referred to the Justice Division for potential prison investigation in December 2020, then promptly dropped.) Hundreds of Twitter customers mentioned no. They urged their followers to #BoycottKroger, whereas Accountable.US, a progressive watchdog group, erected a billboard in Cincinnati calling on the corporate to “Drop Elaine Chao.”

As of this writing, Chao remains to be on the board, and Kroger remains to be in enterprise.

Throughout his two years as Trump’s Inside secretary, Ryan Zinke was the goal of 18 federal investigations over alleged misconduct starting from his private journey to potential conflicts of curiosity, a few of which have but to conclude. But by some means, the most important scandal plaguing Zinke’s congressional marketing campaign isn’t this wild truth however allegations that he doesn’t actually reside in Montana’s Second District.

Zinke has spent the previous few months touring round Montana and waxing poetic on his marketing campaign’s Instagram account about doing yard work “on the identical land in Whitefish that my household has been on for 3 generations.”

However previous to the marketing campaign launch, as Miranda Inexperienced reported at Politico, his spouse Lolita Zinke’s non-public Instagram featured “significantly extra photographs” of the couple in Santa Barbara, California, the place she owns property and a 41-foot yacht. May or not it’s that Zinke prefers the yachting life to doing guide labor again in Montana? It’s unclear, however when Inexperienced ventured out to the candidate’s Whitefish residence this summer time, she encountered his son’s 22-year-old girlfriend, who mentioned that “she lived in the home however that Zinke didn’t.”

A marketing campaign advisor mentioned the concept that Zinke doesn’t reside in Montana is “absurd” and “flat-out improper.” However the marketing campaign didn’t reply to Inexperienced’s questions on whether or not he lives on the home in Whitefish full time.

In the event you thought that narrowly avoiding prosecution for allegedly lying to Congress about why he wished a citizenship query on the 2020 Census may humble our former Commerce secretary, then you definitely don’t know Wilbur Ross. When Bloomberg caught up with Ross in February, he was again in Palm Seaside, Florida, residing — and plotting — like a James Bond villain:

On this explicit afternoon, he’s sitting in the lounge of his 80-year-old dwelling crammed with Magrittes and Picassos, sipping a cappuccino, wearing cashmere sweater, slacks and velvet slippers embroidered with octopuses.

Paradoxically, it’s whereas ensconced on this paradise of earthly delights that Ross is gearing as much as spend money on house, amongst different prospects. He sees alternative in extraterrestrial tourism, manufacturing, analysis and habitation.

Habitation? When requested whether or not house can be a gold-plated actual property alternative for Trump, Ross didn’t disagree.

“Why not Trump condos on the moon?” he quipped again.

Ross’s fast plans are much less grandiose — however nonetheless a tad shady! In December 2020, the Commerce Division inspector basic launched the findings from a probe into Ross’s conduct that conveniently took 37 months to finish. It concluded that Ross had made many inaccurate statements to federal officers about his property earlier than taking workplace, although he didn’t willfully violate conflict-of-interest legal guidelines. Ross insisted he was dedicated to the “highest customary of ethics” — however as Forbes notes, just some weeks later he included a SPAC within the Cayman Islands whereas nonetheless in workplace, “a parting shot at ethics norms on his manner out the door.”

This spring, Trump’s former Power secretary successfully lobbied Texas lawmakers to move laws authorizing a medical research on using psilocybin, the energetic ingredient in “magic mushrooms,” to deal with PTSD in veterans.

Perry stressed that he has “traditionally been a really anti-drug individual” and nonetheless strongly opposes legalizing medication for leisure use. So presumably he was completely sober when he proclaimed in February — as thousands and thousands of individuals in his state had been struggling to remain heat throughout an prolonged energy outage brought on by a polar vortex and a failure of the state’s isolated, ill-equipped electricity grid — that “Texans can be with out electrical energy for longer than three days to maintain the federal authorities out of their enterprise.”

Subsequent time you’re frightened {that a} co-worker could possibly be out to get you, keep in mind it could possibly be worse: You possibly can be former Well being and Human Companies secretary Alex Azar. In March, Politico reported that a number of former Trump well being officers — together with former FDA commissioner Stephen Hahn, former CDC director Robert Redfield, former Medicare chief Seema Verma, and former White Home COVID coordinator Deborah Birx — had banded collectively to coordinate their tales on the administration’s COVID-19 response as a result of they had been frightened that Azar and others may scapegoat them in interviews and memoirs:

“I understand how this goes — everybody has a distinct perspective,” Hahn mentioned in an interview. “I wished to inform what it was that occurred and why it occurred and the angle that we had.”

In calls and textual content messages, members of the group have swapped notes, in contrast recollections and despatched updates on media requests and interview alternatives, 4 individuals with information of the matter mentioned …

And in a nod to their particular person battles with Azar, some have jokingly referred to the group in non-public as “AAA,” or Alex Azar Nameless, based on an individual in direct contact with a number of members.

You possibly can carry on studying reviews about Trump officers’ dealing with of the pandemic in order for you, however the truth that this can be a story about adults tells you principally the whole lot you should know. | Former Trump Cupboard Members: The place Are They Now?


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