Although the feature has ended up buried under a cloud of other Trump administration issues, the White House under President Donald Trump has seen a record senior staff turnover rate. Now, the president has announced two of his newest picks to join his administration’s upper ranks, elevating State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert to the role of Ambassador to the United Nations and lawyer William Barr to the role of U.S. Attorney General.
Barr — who actually served as Attorney General under President George H.W. Bush — replaces the abruptly fired Jeff Sessions, while Nauert will be replacing Nikki Haley, who announced her intent to leave her post earlier this fall.
Trump touted both of the picks on Twitter after announcing them to reporters outside the White House, offering:
‘I am pleased to announce that Heather Nauert… will be nominated to serve as United Nations Ambassador. I want to congratulate Heather… I am [also] pleased to announce that I will be nominating The Honorable William P. Barr for the position of Attorney General of the United States. As… one of the most highly respected lawyers and legal minds in the Country, he will be a great addition to our team. I look forward to having him join our very successful Administration!’
In reality, Nauert’s past includes a role as a Fox News host, making her a questionable choice for one of the top diplomatic roles in the country. Once she assumes her position, the ambassadorship’s stature in the administration is expected to be downgraded away from being a Cabinet-level position thanks in part to reported behind the scenes urging that direction from Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and the president’s national security adviser, John Bolton.
Trump’s choice of Nauert marks him continuing to shape his administration into a monument to his own ideology — it’s not as though his relationship with Fox News isn’t well documented.
Meanwhile, Barr actually does have relevant qualifications as he approaches his new role that will put him in charge of the Russia investigation as led by Special Counsel Robert Mueller. Ironically, Barr’s been Mueller’s boss before, leading the Justice Department back in the 1990s when the eventual FBI director was on the job.
How he’ll handle the Mueller probe remains to be seen, and both he and Nauert still have confirmation hearings to get through.
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