The 2016 election has finally concluded. After a turbulent campaign, President-elect Trump now has his first tough decision under his new administration -who will be in his cabinet.
His loyalists who stayed by his side during his campaign are widely viewed as his cabinet-in-waiting. Aides from Trump’s camp had already circulated the names of contenders.
At the top of the list is Newt Gingrich as possible Secretary of State. The long-time conservative was an early supporter for Trump. He has been on a short list of possible cabinet members ever since.
He has a checkered past, though – to say the least. The 73-year-old was a former Georgia legislator who resigned as Speaker of the House after multiple ethics violations. Gingrich also made a failed run for the Republican presidential nomination in 2011. Recently, Mr Gingrich accused Fox News presenter Megyn Kelly of being “fascinated” by sex.
Attorney General is a much sought after position within the cabinet. The rumblings suggest Rudy Giuliani, one of Trump’s most devoted followers, is a shoe-in for this position. He was Mayor of New York during 9/11 and became the face of the city’s resilience amongst the rubble of the World Trade Center.
He also introduced the stop-and-frisk policy which was deemed as racial profiling. Mr. Trump has long supported the controversial tactic.
The Chief of Staff position will probably go to Reince Priebus, long touted as the Republicans Consiglieri. Priebus is close to House Speaker Paul Ryan and is a fellow Wisconsinite.
Chris Christie, after his short stint running in the 2016 presidential election, endorsed Trump as president.
Christie, who is currently overseeing Trump’s White House transition, has been on a very short list of candidates for Commerce Secretary. But, Christie, as others in Trump’s possible cabinet, has issues. He is currently still involved in a scandal over the closure of a major bridge to New Jersey and New York City as an alleged punishment for a local mayor.
Alabama US Senator, Jeff Sessions, has long been touted as a possible Pentagon chief (Defense Secretary). At a victory bash in New York, Trump commented on Mr. Sessions, stating, “he is highly respected in Washington because he is as smart as you get.”
The 69-year-old was a supporter of the 2003 invasion of Iraq, which Mr. Trump has said was “a terrible and stupid thing.”
Michael Flynn is a retired three-star US Army Lieutenant General. He also helped Mr. Trump connect with veterans during his campaign, despite the candidate’s lack of military service. He is being looked at for National Security Advisor.
Flynn has claimed previously he was forced out of his role as director of the Defense Intelligence Agency from 2012-14 because of his views on radical Islam, which would fall in line with the new Trump regime.
Steve Mnuchin seems to be the most logical choice for Trump’s Treasury Secretary. Mnuchin amassed his fortune during a 17-year stint at Goldman Sachs, before founding a movie production company behind such box office hits as the X-Men and American Sniper.
But it’s unclear whether Trump’s supporters would resist the idea of handing national tax policy to a successful Wall Street insider. Trump’s appointments may be controversial but also may bring the country back to what it should be.