Donald Trump’s transition team will be led by three of his children, at least five millionaires, and the Florida attorney general who was richly compensated after dropping a lawsuit against Trump University.
Meet Team Trump.
.@Mike_Pence takes over Trump’s transition team.— Sahil Kapur (@sahilkapur) November 11, 2016
Carson, Christie, Newt, Flynn, Giuliani, Sessions are vice chairs. pic.twitter.com/umvYyB9Xmb
The document is a pretty good clue into Trump’s inner circle and the competing factions shaping up for his administration. There’s the Trump family: Ivanka Trump, her husband Jared Kushner, Eric Trump, and Donald Trump Jr. are all on the list. (Tiffany Trump was, alas, somehow forgotten.) Trump has said his sprawling business empire will be put in a blind trust and run by his three eldest children during his presidency — but that doesn’t seem to do much to mitigate the conflict of interest when those same children are also involved in key decisions to staff his administration.
Then there are the conservative lawmakers and officials who backed Trump’s campaign from the get-go: New York Rep. Chris Collins, who endorsed Trump early on; Pennsylvania’s Rep. Lou Barletta, a bitter foe of undocumented immigrants; and former Speaker Newt Gingrich and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie. California Rep. Devin Nunes, a close ally of Speaker Paul Ryan, may also serve as a go-between for congressional Republicans and the Trump administration.
Separately, the team also includes some of the fantastically wealthy advisers and donors who supported Trump’s campaign. Rebekah Mercer, the daughter of billionaire hedge fund magnate Roger Mercer, spent tens of millions beefing up both Trump and the Republican establishment. Steven Mnuchin, a Trump fundraiser during the campaign, is an old Wall Street hand who made it out of Goldman Sachs with over $40 million. And Peter Thiel is the famous PayPal founder and billionaire who sued Gawker into oblivion and has some unusual ideas about harvesting the blood of the young.
Trump ran on a campaign of throwing the moneyed interests out of the capitol and promising to “drain the swamp” of corruption in Washington, DC. Stocking his transition team with Wall Street titans and his own children seems like a peculiar way to do that.