Remember when President-elect Trump attracted working class voters by promising to “Drain the Swamp” of establishment politicians and wealthy Wall Street bankers?
As evidenced by Trump’s picks, he’s convinced that a cabinet full of billionaires will know what’s best for a country where the average household earns $52,250 per year.
In all fairness, it’s common for presidents to staff their cabinet with some millionaires. However, Trump has appointed a lineup of the richest people to ever work in the White House; a lineup that includes at least three billionaires.
Head of the Education Department-Betsy DeVos
Although never working as a teacher or educator, billionaire Betsy DeVos was chosen to be the head of education, primarily because of her campaign donations to Trump. Her husband Dick DeVos is the former president of both Amway and the Orlando Magic. The couple is known for giving millions in donations to conservative and religious causes, and for their outspoken support of charter schools.
Department of Commerce-Wilbur Ross
President-elect Trump’s pick to lead the Department of Commerce is Wilbur Ross, a billionaire investor who earned the moniker, “King of Bankruptcy.” Owner of an art collection worth in excess of $100 million, Ross is definitely a savvy investor, but can be expected to continue making decisions that support the top one percent. Ross was one of Trump’s most loyal supporters throughout his election and has known the President-elect since the 1990’s.
Deputy Secretary of Commerce-Todd Ricketts
Even wealthier than the two aforementioned cabinet members is Todd Ricketts, Trump’s choice for Deputy Secretary of Commerce. Along with his brother Tom, Todd Ricketts is best known as co-owner of the Chicago Cubs, and for his appearance on the popular reality show, Undercover Boss. Ricketts obtained his wealth, which is estimated at over $5.5 billion, from his father Joe, the founder of TD Ameritrade.
Ironically, Joe Ricketts financed a PAC intended to derail Trump’s campaign, a decision that led to angry tweets from Trump earlier this year.
Implications of the Wealthiest Cabinet in History
The most obvious implication of the country being led by multi-millionaires and billionaires is that they are going to do what will help their wealthy friends and fatten their own bank accounts.
That said, it’s wrong to judge those without money, so assuming that those who were born wealthy won’t excel in their positions is a shortsighted assumption as well. This is especially true for those who’ve spend their lives working in finance and investing, like Wilbur Ross.
Trump rewarded his wealthy contributors with positions of power, and he isn’t the first. However, for a campaign that was run touting the needs of the uneducated working class, it’s hard to believe that a team comprised of the wealthiest people ever to work in government will have his voters’ best interest in mind.
Featured Image Via Technology Zone