On The President’s First 100 Days

Finnbar Kiely

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Throughout President Trump’s first year in office, he has repeatedly shown that he values personal loyalty over all other qualities, including competence, independence, and experience. He has appointed friends, family members, and campaign donors to government positions, including his daughter, Ivanka, and son-in-law, Jared Kushner, who were appointed senior advisers despite their complete lack of political experience, their most important qualification being their relation to the president. In addition, Betsy DeVos, the Secretary of Education, has no teaching degree, hasn’t worked in a school, and didn’t even go to public school. More worrisome, she advocated during her confirmation hearing for guns in schools to defend against potential grizzly bears. Furthermore, they’re not alone. A host of other unqualified and

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inexperienced appointees have joined them in the White House, including Andrew Puzder, the Secretary of Labor, who is likely one of the people most opposed to labor rights in the United States. In his last job as a CEO, he was a vehement opposer of wage increases and mandated overtime pay. Steven Mnuchin, Secretary of the Treasury, has no experience in policy making or government, but his “extensive” qualifications include his personal wealth, running Trump’s campaign fundraising, and his past business dealings with Trump, which nicely complement his other qualification of being a friend of Trump’s. Finally, rounding out Trump’s cabinet is Rick Perry, Secretary of Energy. Perry actually advocated for the elimination of the Department of Energy, though in his defense, he couldn’t actually remember it was the third department he wanted to immediately eliminate in his infamous “oops” moment.

The common thread between these appointees is their lack of expertise, their lack of competence, and their unfailing personal loyalty to Trump, even at the expense of making the right decisions. It reminds me think of Caligula, the Roman Emperor, who appointed his horse a senator. Is this really too far off from Caligula? As Trump continues to make significant changes in his inner circle, I wonder whether a Trump family pet may become the next Secretary of the Interior, or perhaps even Chief of Staff.

— Finnbar Kiely

Finnbar is an 8th grade student at BMS


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On The President’s First 100 Days