Like all presidents, Donald Trump is served by a group of advisers, collectively known as the Cabinet, who run the various departments and agencies of the government and help implement the president’s policy agenda. The…
Like all presidents, Donald Trump is served by a group of advisers, collectively known as the Cabinet, who run the various departments and agencies of the government and help implement the president’s policy agenda. The Cabinet was established by the Constitution. Trump’s includes Vice President Mike Pence, 15 permanent members and eight others considered to be Cabinet-rank.
A look at who is advising Trump:
— Vice President Mike Pence: Restrained where Trump is freewheeling, Pence helps amplify the president’s message and dodges questions about his missteps.
— Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue: The former Georgia governor has been traveling the country trying to assure anxious farmers that their livelihoods won’t suffer under retaliatory tariffs imposed by China and other countries in response to taxes imposed on their products by Trump.
— Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross: The wealthy Wall Street investor is overseeing key parts of Trump’s hard-line trade agenda, including tariffs on imported steel and aluminum and a yet-to-be completed investigation into whether auto imports threaten U.S. national security. Ross has faced questions about his personal finances.
— Defense Secretary Jim Mattis: Trump loves to call Mattis by his “Mad Dog” nickname, but the defense secretary is known for his quiet demeanor and influence on Trump.
— Education Secretary Betsy DeVos: The Michigan billionaire and charter school advocate was confirmed by the slimmest of margins after two Senate Republicans joined Democrats to vote against her nomination, forcing Pence to cast a historic tie-breaking vote.
— Energy Secretary Rick Perry: The former Texas governor and onetime Trump critic takes pride in his under-the-radar profile and jokes about not getting bad press like some of his colleagues.
— Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar: The former drug company executive’s agency has been in the spotlight over its responsibility for the well-being of thousands of migrant children separated from their families at the border.
— Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen: The protege of White House chief of staff John Kelly recently became the public face of the administration’s zero-tolerance immigration policy, which led to the separation of thousands of parents and children trying to enter the U.S. from Mexico.
— Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson: Before joining the Cabinet, Carson was a pediatric neurosurgeon at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, where he gained renown for successfully performing a complex, 22-hour surgery to separate Siamese twins joined at the head.
— Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke: The former Navy SEAL and ex-Montana congressman showed up for his first day of work by riding a horse through downtown Washington to department headquarters.
— Labor Secretary Alex Acosta: His agency would be combined with the Education Department under a Trump proposal, the latest in a series of attempts to shrink the federal government.
— Secretary of State Mike Pompeo: The former Kansas congressman and early Trump supporter bonded with the president by personally handling nearly every intelligence briefing, often using visual aids to get his points across.
— Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao: The wife of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is among the Cabinet secretaries who have been putting their heads down and producing for the president, generally without drawing unflattering attention.
— Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin: The former investment banker has remained close to the president since Trump took office, never criticizing Trump in public and often defending administration policies on the Sunday talk shows. Trump attended Mnuchin’s Washington wedding last year to Scottish actress Louise Linton.
— Acting Veterans Affairs Secretary Peter O’Rourke: The Navy and Air Force veteran is warming the seat for Defense Department official Robert Wilkie, Trump’s choice to permanently lead the VA, who is awaiting a likely Senate confirmation vote.
— Attorney General Jeff Sessions: The former Alabama senator and early Trump supporter quickly earned the president’s wrath by stepping aside from overseeing the federal investigation into possible collusion between Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign and the Russian government.
— White House chief of staff John Kelly: The retired four-star Marine general whose efforts to establish order in a chaotic White House have grated on Trump. Kelly is expected to leave this summer.
— Environmental Protection Agency head Scott Pruitt: The former Oklahoma attorney general resigned Thursday following a run of bad press over many questionable moves, including renting a lobbyist’s Capitol Hill home at below-market rate, spending millions on security and travel, and deploying government staff for personal needs, including seeking a fast-food chicken franchise for his wife. His deputy, Andrew Wheeler, assumes duties as acting administrator.
— Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney: The former South Carolina congressman is the hard-charging federal number-cruncher who earns Trump’s praise for his often-combative budget briefings with the press. Mulvaney wears a second hat as acting director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
— U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer: The experienced trade negotiator is laboring to turn Trump’s tough trade talk into reality, most notably by pressuring China to reform its trade practices and by reworking a decades-old trade pact with Canada and Mexico.
— U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley: The former South Carolina governor and onetime Trump critic espouses his foreign policy hard line against Iran and in support of Israel.
— Small Business Administration chief Linda McMahon: Trump cited the background of the former CEO of World Wrestling Entertainment and her status as one of the country’s top female executives in naming her to lead the agency tasked with assisting small-business owners.
— Director of National Intelligence Daniel Coats: As the fifth DNI, the former congressman and senator from Indiana oversees the nation’s 17 intelligence agencies and advises the president.
— Central Intelligence Agency Director Gina Haspel: Under Trump, the CIA employee of more than three decades became the first woman to lead the nation’s elite intelligence agency.