Letter: Trump’s cabinet picks pose threat to citizens

From: Denny Kubal


President-elect Donald Trump’s cabinet appointments threaten the agencies that protect us.

Trump appointed Andrew Puzder, the millionaire CEO of a fast-food burger chain. Puzder makes $4.4 million, which is 291 times his average worker. He wants workers replaced with robots. He opposes federal minimum wage, overtime pay, sick days and health care benefits. The Secretary of Labor should protect workers, but Puzder threatens the average worker.

Jeff Sessions’ racism disqualified him as a federal judge, but as attorney general he will protect our civil rights? He wrongly prosecuted black activists for voter fraud and opposed the voting rights act. The Japanese American Citizens League, the anti-defamation league, the NAACP and other human rights organizations oppose Sessions confirmation. This appointment threatens legal rights for all citizens.

Trump appointed Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt to lead the Environmental Protection Agency. Pruitt is suing the EPA over the agency’s Clean Power Plan, and to remove regulations of methane emissions, a powerful greenhouse gas. As an energy industry ally, he defended ExxonMobil for misleading the public on climate change. He has no scientific credentials, but doubts over 98 percent of all climate scientists who state that climate change is a man-made problem. This appointment threatens clean air and water, and the future of our planet.

Dr. Ben Carson will head the agency responsible for assisting the elderly, disabled and poor with housing. A spokesman for Carson said, “Dr. Carson feels he has no government experience. He’s never run a federal agency. The last thing he would want to do was take a position that could cripple the presidency.” Carson also said he doesn’t believe the department should strive to achieve its mission. This appointment threatens fair housing.

Trump’s other nominees show the same pattern of disregard for the public good, with the education secretary vowing to dismantle public education and the proposed head of our public health care system proposing the destruction of federal Medicare, Medicaid and Obamacare.

Trump’s picks for his cabinet show a pattern: Unqualified nominees who vow to not enforce the mandate of their agency. The threat is enormous: Our government is being summarily dismantled, our rights denied, those in need further marginalized and our climate destroyed. We should fight for our future!