News & Politics

Conservative Writer Slams Trump for Hiring Droves of 'Rich Grifters' — Despite Promise to Pick the 'Best' People

The latest accusations of wildly unethical conduct surround Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross.

Photo Credit: Daily Mail YouTube screenshot

As a candidate, Donald Trump answered questions about his fitness for office and his ability to solve some of the country's greatest problems with a simple answer: He'd hire the "best people."

But as conservative writer Jennifer Rubin pointed out in a new Washington Post column Thursday, as president, Trump appears to have hired some of the worst people he could find. 

The latest stark example of this pattern is Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross. Ross has been accused of a series of ethical breaches, but the latest allegations against him in a bombshell Forbes report make him out to be essentially a master conman. The report finds that the Commerce secretary has pilfered at least $120 million, according to people who have worked closely with him.

"There are allegations of mischarging investors, 'skim[ming] money by serving on corporate boards of his firm’s portfolio companies,' and bilking employees," Rubin writes.

But it's not just Ross.

Former EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt and Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price have already been fired for blatant ethical infringements and abuses of office. Kellyanne Conway, HUD Secretary Ben Carson, Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin, Attorney General Jeff Sessions, and top aide Jared Kushner have all also been accused of violations, Rubin points out, not to mention former campaign chair Paul Manafort, who is currently on trial for extensive financial crimes.

And then, of course, there's the president himself, who is, among many other charges, likely violating the Constitution's Emoluments Clause.

"Trump has not hired the 'best' people," Rubin writes. "He by and large hired people like himself, rich grifters for whom there is never enough money and for whom 'truth' is something malleable in the hands of the rich and famous."

She adds: "If his aim was to hire no one more honest than he, Trump largely succeeded."

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Cody Fenwick is a reporter and editor. Follow him on Twitter @codytfenwick.