Sunday, August 6, 2017

Working America at Day 200 of the Trump Administration

There's simply too much to cover trying to summarize the first two hundred days of the Trump administration. So, we'll review an issue at a time. Our first look..

A government functioning and working for us

At our last check, looking at the most senior positions in government — those requiring Senate approval, no nominations are currently under consideration. 577 positions require Senate confirmation:[1] There are, however, some 1,200 key appointments total which go through the Senate, of about 4,000 total which each incoming administration appoints.

  • 354, no nominees, that's 3 out of every 5
  • none awaiting nomination, that is, folk identified for a position but not yet formally submitted for approval
  • 106 nominated
  • 117 confirmed, 1 out of every 5

President Trump blames Democrats for slowing the process, but there have been numerous cases of slow responses to ethics responses, withdrawn nominations, and other problems. At the end of the day, however, these require a simple Senate majority, which the Republicans hold. The administration has no one else to blame for being so far behind.

Looking at the State Department, there are still no nominees for ambassador to:

  • Australia, a key ally
  • India, the country with the second-largest population, close behind China, and four times as large as 3rd place America
  • Germany, the country that appears ready to assume the U.S.'s former role as leader of the free world
  • Denmark, the happiest country on Earth, they might have something to teach us
  • Saudi Arabia, key petroleum-rich ally and first stop on Trump's first trip abroad
  • South Korea, home to 25,000 U.S. service-men and women on 15 bases protecting an ally still technically at war with the North, and, at 200 days of the Trump administration, caught in a war of words between President Trump and Kim John-Un, 3rd Supreme Leader of North Korea, promising mutual Armageddon

But things are even worse closer to home.

President Trump told us he is our champion, protecting the forgotten American worker. But at the Department of Labor, that part of our government that is dedicated to our welfare, only the Secretary, Alexander Acosta, and Deputy Secretary, Patrick Pizzella, are in place. The entire remaining slate of key positions has not a single nominee:

  • Solicitor
  • Chief financial officer
  • Assistant secretary for congressional and intergovernmental affairs
  • Assistant secretary for employee benefits security
  • Assistant secretary for employment and training
  • Assistant secretary for mine safety and health
  • Assistant secretary for occupational safety and health
  • Assistant secretary for disability employment policy
  • Assistant secretary for policy
  • Assistant secretary for veterans employment and training
  • Commissioner, Bureau of Labor Statistics
  • Administrator, wage and hour division
FAILS Working America
[1]You can track these yourself, at ourpublicservice.org/issues/presidential-transition/political-appointee-tracker.php.
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