Just days earlier than the election and with every thing perpetually on fireplace, the Trump administration snuck in a little-noticed broadside in opposition to the civil service this week. In an Executive Order issued late Wednesday nighttime, the president transformed lots of of hundreds of nonpartisan bureaucrats, employed for his or her subject material experience, into political appointees, who may be employed or fired on the pleasure of the president.
Because what’s plaguing the CDC is too many staff who can’t be booted out for refusing to endorse the most recent quack COVID remedy the MyPillow person of the male persuasion convinces the president to get behind, proper?
Remember when Donald Trump insisted that Hurricane Dorian was headed for Alabama and even took a Sharpie to a weather map to “prove” himself proper? Under this new order, the National Weather Service staff who dared to contradict him with precise meteorological projections could possibly be fired for it.
Rationalizing the transfer as vital to revive good governance and permit poor performers to be weeded out with out all these pesky civil service and union protections, the order reclassifies enormous swathes of the federal paperwork as “confidential, policy-determining, policy-making, or policy-advocating positions,” language heretofore used to explain political appointees.
And it duties the Office of Personnel Management with compiling an inventory of presidency staff to be recategorized by January 19, 2021, i.e. the day earlier than the inauguration.
As Richard Loeb, senior coverage counsel for the American Federation of Government Employees, the biggest union representing federal employees, told the Washington Post, if Trump loses in November, he might expedite this “declaration of war on the civil service” by firing thousand of employees he’s lengthy known as the “Deep State.” The lack of competent consultants would cripple an incoming Biden administration.
Worse nonetheless, a lame duck President Trump might use the order to “burrow in” his own political appointees by reclassifying them as profession bureaucrats, making it troublesome for an incoming Biden administration to eliminate them, as former authorities ethics chief Walter Shaub explained to The Independent.
Creating the brand new class — referred to as “Schedule F” — and shifting present civil servants into it might permit a lame-duck President Trump to cripple his successor’s administration by firing any profession federal staff who’ve been included on the record. It additionally might permit Trump administration officers to skirt prohibitions in opposition to “burrowing in” — the closely restricted observe of changing political appointees (referred to as “Schedule C” staff) into profession civil servants — by hiring them under the brand new class for positions which might not finish with Trump’s time period. Another provision orders businesses to take steps to ban eradicating “Schedule F” appointees from their jobs on the grounds of “political affiliation,” which might probably stop a future administration from firing unqualified appointees due to their affiliation with President Trump.
“It’s a two-pronged attack — a Hail Mary pass to enable them to do some burrowing in if they lose the election,” mentioned Walter Shaub, who ran the US Office of Government Ethics over the last 4 years of the Obama administration and first six months of the Trump administration. “But if they win the election, then anything goes for the destruction of the civil service… [This could] take us back to the spoils system and all the corruption that comes with it.”
Can’t take your eyes off these f***ers for a minute!
So, who will Trump be changing Dr. Anthony Fauci with on November 4? Dr. Oz? Dr. Phil? Dr. Pepper?
Can’t hardly wait.
Trump issues sweeping order for tens of thousands of career federal employees to lose civil service protections [WaPo]
Trump just quietly passed an executive order that could destroy a future Biden administration [Independent]
Elizabeth Dye (@5DollarFeminist) lives in Baltimore what place she writes about regulation and politics.