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Keeping Up with the Trump Administration: A Vacant Whitehouse: Thousands of Positions Remain Unfilled

Morgan Minkler, Staff Writer

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An Overview of the Issue…

Since taking office in January, President Donald Trump has been slow to fill appointments that as chief executive he is entitled to make under the law. Thousands of appointed positions in the President’s administration remain vacant, leaving many agencies with large staffing gaps waiting to be filled. The result: “Many federal agencies and offices are in states of suspended animation, their career civil servants answering to temporary bosses whose influence and staying power are unclear, and who are sometimes awaiting policy direction from appointees whose arrival may be weeks or months away,” the New York Times reports.

 

The Federal Positions That Are Currently Unappointed…

Several Cabinet posts remain unfilled as Trump’s nominees have not been officially confirmed by the U.S. Senate. Trump has yet to install new management at Department of Housing and Urban Development as well as those for energy, labor, agriculture and the interior. In the vast majority of cases, Trump’s administration has not begun the lengthy screening process — which can take several weeks to as long two months — that nominees must complete before their confirmations can be considered by the Senate. The President has put the blame for this situation on Senate Democrats, saying they are unfairly obstructing his Cabinet appointees. But the administration’s ability to install political appointees goes far beyond those which require Senate approval. As of early March, Trump had yet to fill nearly 2,000 presidential appointments throughout the government, many of which did not require Senate confirmation.

 

Presidential and Student Perspective…

Responding to media reports about the many political appointments he’s yet to make, Trump told Fox News that he is intentionally leaving those offices vacant, stating the following, “A lot of those jobs I don’t want to appoint because they’re unnecessary to have…we’re running a very good, efficient government right now.”

 

“I had no idea that these Federal positions remained unfilled. It’s disconcerting to say the least”

  • Annabelle Obillo, Freshman

 

“It’s vital we fill these Federal positions. The state of our government is reliant on the leaders that we appoint and failing to do so is detrimental, despite opposition from our President”

  • Michelle Yun, Junior

 

A clear number of students interviewed at Dublin High were unaware of the positions President Trump has yet to fill. Even those who were informed and had background knowledge on this topic were nescient to the severity of this issue. What students took a great interest in, however, was the president’s remarks regarding his lack of appointees.

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