The media is calling it unprecedented and says Trump fired tons of top level executives in the State Department. Both assertions are fake news. The truth is that during every transition top State Dept officials offer their resignations to allow the incoming president to make a choice on whether to retain them.
But, it is true that Trump accepted all the resignations. During the George W Bush transition, only one top staffer was retained. Clinton fired every federal prosecutors in the country. Sources say that four of the officials were fired when they did not resign. Many of those could move to other government agencies in the move known as “bumping” based on length of service.
The union that represents American diplomats, the American Foreign Service Association, called for the administration to quickly name successors to the positions. The union urged that they be filled with career diplomats but played down the significance of the moves.
“While this appears to be a large turnover in a short period of time, a change of administration always brings personnel changes, and there is nothing unusual about rotations or retirements in the Foreign Service,” it said.
More resignations are expected to be accepted as Trump’s diplomatic team takes shape, according to the officials who were not authorized to discuss personnel matters publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity. The now vacant jobs will be filled by subordinates on an acting basis until their full-time appointments are named, the officials said.
President Trump is naming acting officials as he want’s Ray Tillerson, his nominee for the State Department to name his own team. Tillerson will not be confirmed until next week.
Another day, another Trump campaign promise kept.