New reports describe the former president's increasingly loud calls to turn back the clock on America's more than a century-old apolitical government agencies, and turn them into direct instruments of a president's administrative and political power.
Former president Donald Trump is doubling down on campaigning for gutting the independent, legally non-aligned federal civil service—and raising political money off the prospect.
A new report in Axios enumerates multiple Trump-backed advertisements and messaging campaigns now underway—and some allied organizations—that are pushing in just this direction.
Though “45,” the undisputed head of the “MAGA” crusade, was twice-impeached on charges stemming from taking partisanism in the Executive Branch to new extremes, he arguably avoided conviction flexing equally raw political muscle in the Legislative. Now—as he ramps up another possible White House run—it seems the lesson learned is emphatically not to ratchet down the so far ill-fated sectarian edge of his movement, but it’s rather to hire staunch followers into a new and highly politicized government service. And to demolish a century-and-a-half old legally nonpartisan system.
As Axios and other publications note, Trump is speaking out on his wish to reimplement his Executive Order 13957 (since reversed by President Biden) that would let his most ardently loyal followers take over and politicize positions across the federal workforce.
And, the Axios report shows, an equally powerful goal is to scoop up as much solicited cash as possible off messaging the aim of creating a politicized bureaucracy—with money from the MAGA movement’s thousands and even millions of devotees across America who—to date—echo the former president’s “drain the Swamp” slogan and take on official Washington.
Reports in our partner site GovExec and elsewhere describe mounting efforts—most recently in the form of new legislation to block Schedule F—being pressed by Democrats and opponents of it. Critics across a breadth of unions (for example, AFGE and NTEU) and good governance orgs (for example, the Partnership for Public Service and POGO) continue to staunchly combat what they see as apocalyptic damage to the functions of agencies and elected government that would result from Schedule F.
This article has been updated.