Trump fills top jobs

Kuwait Times - - INTERNATIONAL -

US Pres­i­dent-elect Don­ald Trump yes­ter­day an­nounced Exxon Mo­bil Corp’s chair­man and CEO Rex Tiller­son as his choice for US sec­re­tary of state to serve as the na­tion’s top diplo­mat. The fol­low­ing is a list of Repub­li­can Trump’s se­lec­tions for top jobs in his ad­min­is­tra­tion. All the posts but that of na­tional se­cu­rity ad­viser, the White House chief of staff, White House di­rec­tor of the Na­tional Eco­nomic Coun­cil and White House strate­gist re­quire Se­nate con­fir­ma­tion:

At­tor­ney Gen­eral: Jeff Ses­sions

Ses­sions, 69, was the first US se­na­tor to en­dorse Trump’s pres­i­den­tial bid and has been a close ally since. Son of a coun­try-store owner, the Alabama se­na­tor and for­mer fed­eral pros­e­cu­tor has long taken a tough stance on il­le­gal im­mi­gra­tion, op­pos­ing any path to cit­i­zen­ship for un­doc­u­mented im­mi­grants.

CIA Di­rec­tor: Mike Pom­peo

US Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Pom­peo, 52, is a third-term con­gress­man from Kansas who serves on the House of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives In­tel­li­gence Com­mit­tee, which over­sees the CIA, Na­tional Se­cu­rity Agency and cy­ber se­cu­rity. A re­tired Army of­fi­cer and Har­vard Law School grad­u­ate, Pom­peo sup­ports the US gov­ern­ment’s sweep­ing col­lec­tion of Amer­i­cans’ com­mu­ni­ca­tions data and wants to scrap the nu­clear deal with Iran.

Ross, 78, heads the pri­vate eq­uity firm WL Ross & Co. His net worth was pegged by Forbes at about $2.9 bil­lion. A staunch sup­porter of Trump and an eco­nomic ad­viser, Ross helped shape the Trump cam­paign’s views on trade pol­icy. He blames the North Amer­i­can Free Trade Agree­ment with Canada and Mex­ico, which went into force in 1994, and the 2001 en­try of China into the World Trade Or­ga­ni­za­tion for caus­ing mas­sive US fac­tory job losses.

De­fense Sec­re­tary: James Mat­tis

Mat­tis is a re­tired Marine gen­eral known for his tough talk, dis­trust of Iran and bat­tle­field ex­pe­ri­ence in Iraq and Afghanistan. A for­mer leader of Cen­tral Com­mand, which over­sees U.S. mil­i­tary op­er­a­tions in the Mid­dle East and South Asia, Mat­tis, 66, is known by many U.S. forces by his nick­name “Mad Dog.” He was once re­buked for say­ing in 2005: “It’s fun to shoot some peo­ple.”

Ed­u­ca­tion Sec­re­tary: Betsy Devos

DeVos, 58, is a bil­lion­aire Repub­li­can donor, a for­mer chair of the Michi­gan Repub­li­can Party and an ad­vo­cate for the pri­va­ti­za­tion of ed­u­ca­tion. As chair of the Amer­i­can Fed­er­a­tion for Chil­dren, she has pushed at the state level for vouch­ers that fam­i­lies can use to send their chil­dren to pri­vate schools and for the ex­pan­sion of char­ter schools.

Ben Car­son Environmental Ad­min­is­tra­tor: Scott Pruitt

An ar­dent op­po­nent of Pres­i­dent Barack Obama’s mea­sures to stem cli­mate change, Ok­la­homa At­tor­ney Gen­eral Pruitt, 48, has en­raged environmental ac­tivists. But he fits with the pres­i­dent-elect’s prom­ise to cut the agency back and elim­i­nate reg­u­la­tion that he says is sti­fling oil and gas drilling. Pruitt be­came the top state pros­e­cu­tor for Ok­la­homa, which has ex­ten­sive oil re­serves, in 2011, and has chal­lenged the EPA mul­ti­ple times since.

Health Sec­re­tary: Tom Price

US Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Price, 62, is an or­tho­pe­dic sur­geon who heads the House Bud­get Com­mit­tee. A rep­re­sen­ta­tive from Ge­or­gia since 2005, Price has crit­i­cized Oba­macare and has cham­pi­oned a plan of tax cred­its, ex­panded health sav­ings ac­counts and law­suit re­forms to re­place it. He is op­posed to abor­tion.

Home­land Se­cu­rity Sec­re­tary: John Kelly

The fi­nal lead­er­ship role of Kelly’s 45-year ca­reer was head of the US South­ern Com­mand, re­spon­si­ble for US mil­i­tary ac­tiv­i­ties and re­la­tion­ships in Latin Amer­ica and the Caribbean. The 66-year-old re­tired Marine gen­eral dif­fered with Demo­cratic Pres­i­dent Barack Obama

Rex Tiller­son

on key is­sues and has warned of vul­ner­a­bil­i­ties along the United States’ south­ern bor­der with Mex­ico.

Hous­ing Sec­re­tary: Ben Car­son

Car­son, 65, is a re­tired neu­ro­sur­geon who dropped out of the Repub­li­can pres­i­den­tial nom­i­nat­ing race in March and threw his sup­port to Trump. A pop­u­lar writer and speaker in con­ser­va­tive cir­cles, Car­son pre­vi­ously in­di­cated re­luc­tance to take a po­si­tion in the in­com­ing ad­min­is­tra­tion be­cause of his lack of ex­pe­ri­ence in the fed­eral gov­ern­ment. Car­son is the first African-Amer­i­can picked for a Cabi­net spot by Trump.

In­te­rior Sec­re­tary: Cathy Mc­mor­ris

Mc­Mor­ris Rodgers, a 47-year-old US con­gress­woman from Wash­ing­ton state, is the fourth most se­nior mem­ber of the House of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives lead­er­ship. A mem­ber of the House En­ergy Com­mit­tee, she has sup­ported ef­forts to ex­pand the US en­ergy in­dus­try such as the re­cent re­peal of the decades-old ban on oil ex­ports and ef­forts to re­ject the Environmental Pro­tec­tion Agency’s Wa­ters of the United States Act. She has also ex­pressed skep­ti­cism about cli­mate change. Be­fore join­ing Congress in 2004, Mc­Mor­ris Rodgers served for a decades in the Wash­ing­ton state leg­is­la­ture, even­tu­ally be­com­ing the first woman there to serve as mi­nor­ity leader.

Eco­nomic Coun­cil Di­rec­tor: Gary Cohn

Cohn, 56, pres­i­dent and chief op­er­at­ing of­fi­cer of in­vest­ment bank Gold­man Sachs, had widely been con­sid­ered heir ap­par­ent to Lloyd Blank­fein, CEO of the Wall Street firm. Trump ham­mered Gold­man and Blank­fein dur­ing the pres­i­den­tial cam­paign, re­leas­ing a tele­vi­sion ad that called Blank­fein part of a “global power struc­ture” that had robbed Amer­ica’s work­ing class.

La­bor Sec­re­tary: An­drew Puzder

Puzder, chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer of CKE Restau­rants Inc , which runs the Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s fast-food chains, has been a vo­cif­er­ous critic of gov­ern­ment reg­u­la­tion of the work­place and the Na­tional La­bor Re­la­tions Board. Puzder, 66, has ar­gued that higher min­i­mum wages would hurt work­ers by forc­ing restau­rants to close, and praises the ben­e­fits of au­to­ma­tion, so his ap­point­ment is likely to an­tag­o­nize or­ga­nized la­bor.

Na­tional Se­cu­rity Ad­viser: Michael Flynn

Re­tired Lieu­tenant Gen­eral Flynn, 57, was an early Trump sup­porter and serves as vice chair­man on his tran­si­tion team. He be­gan his Army ca­reer in 1981 and was de­ployed in Afghanistan and Iraq. Flynn be­came head of the De­fense In­tel­li­gence Agency in 2012 un­der Pres­i­dent Barack Obama but re­tired a year ear­lier than ex­pected, ac­cord­ing to me­dia re­ports, and be­came a fierce critic of Obama’s for­eign pol­icy.

Sec­re­tary Of State: Rex Tiller­son

Tiller­son, 64, has spent his en­tire ca­reer at Exxon Mo­bil Corp, where he rose to serve as its chair­man and CEO in 2006. A civil en­gi­neer by train­ing, the Texan joined the world’s largest en­ergy com­pany in 1975 and led sev­eral of its op­er­a­tions in the United States as well as in Ye­men, Thai­land and Rus­sia. As Exxon’s chief ex­ec­u­tive, he main­tained close ties with Moscow and op­posed US sanc­tions against Rus­sia for its in­cur­sion into Crimea.

Small Busi­ness Ad­min­is­tra­tor: Linda Mcmahon

McMahon, 68, is a co-founder and for­mer chief ex­ec­u­tive of the pro­fes­sional wrestling fran­chise WWE, which is based in Stam­ford, Connecticut. She ran un­suc­cess­fully as a Repub­li­can for a US Se­nate seat in Connecticut in 2010 and 2012, and was an early sup­porter of Trump’s pres­i­den­tial cam­paign.

Trans­porta­tion Sec­re­tary: Elaine Chao

Chao, 63, was la­bor sec­re­tary un­der Pres­i­dent Ge­orge W. Bush for eight years and the first AsianAmer­i­can woman to hold a Cabi­net po­si­tion. She is a di­rec­tor at Inger­soll Rand, News Corp and Vul­can Ma­te­ri­als Com­pany. She is mar­ried to US Se­nate Ma­jor­ity Leader Mitch McCon­nell, a Repub­li­can from Ken­tucky.

Trea­sury Sec­re­tary: Steven Mnuchin

Mnuchin, 53, is a suc­cess­ful pri­vate eq­uity in­vestor, hedge fund man­ager and Hol­ly­wood fi­nancier who spent 17 years at Gold­man Sachs be­fore leav­ing in 2002. He as­sem­bled an in­vestor group to buy a failed Cal­i­for­nia mort­gage lender in 2009, re­branded it as OneWest Bank and built it into South­ern Cal­i­for­nia’s largest bank. Hous­ing ad­vo­cacy groups crit­i­cized the bank for its fore­clo­sure prac­tices, ac­cus­ing it of be­ing too quick to fore­close on strug­gling home­own­ers.

UN Am­bas­sador: Nikki Ha­ley

Ha­ley, 44, has been the Repub­li­can gov­er­nor of South Carolina since 2011 and has lit­tle ex­pe­ri­ence in for­eign pol­icy or the fed­eral gov­ern­ment. The daugh­ter of In­dian im­mi­grants, she led a suc­cess­ful push last year to re­move the Con­fed­er­ate bat­tle flag from the grounds of the South Carolina state capi­tol af­ter the killing of nine black church­go­ers in Charleston by a white gun­man.

Chief of Staff: Reince Priebus

Re­cently re-elected to serve as Repub­li­can Na­tional Com­mit­tee chair­man, Priebus will give up his party post to join Trump in the White House, where the low-key Wash­ing­ton op­er­a­tive could help forge ties with Congress to ad­vance Trump’s agenda. The 44-year-old was a stead­fast sup­porter of Trump dur­ing the pres­i­den­tial cam­paign even as the party frac­tured amid the choice.

The for­mer head of the con­ser­va­tive web­site Bre­it­bart News came aboard as Trump’s cam­paign chair­man in Au­gust. A rab­ble-rous­ing con­ser­va­tive me­dia fig­ure, he helped shift Bre­it­bart’s into a fo­rum for the alt-right, a loose con­fed­er­a­tion of those who re­ject main­stream pol­i­tics and in­cludes neo-Nazis, white su­prem­a­cists and an­tiSemites. His hir­ing sig­nals Trump’s ded­i­ca­tion to op­er­at­ing out­side the norms of Wash­ing­ton. As White House chief of staff, Ban­non, 63, will serve as Trump’s gate­keeper and agenda-set­ter. — Reuters

Com­merce Sec­re­tary: Wil­bur Ross

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