On Tuesday, Donald Trump and his possible choice for secretary of state Mitt Romney were photographed dining at Jean-Georges, a three-star Michelin restaurant located inside the president-elect’s Manhattan hotel property. The two men, accompanied by Reince Priebus, reportedly feasted on frog legs, lamb chops, and chocolate cake:
you can actually see the “how y’all let this mans in the white house and not me” in Mitt Romney’s eyes pic.twitter.com/x9Iua7dRJU
— Nathan Zed (@NathanZed) November 30, 2016
During the campaign, such images of the two would have seemed inconceivable. In March, Romney dedicated an entire press conference to blasting the real estate magnate as a fraud. Much of Trump’s campaign also decried Hillary Clinton’s ties to Wall Street and billionaire donors.
But three weeks after Trump won the general election, both the Jean-Georges dinner and Romney’s potential role in a Trump administration are only in the latest incidents in what is increasingly shaping up to be a presidential cabinet dominated by millionaire—even billionaire—appointees. Just take a look at the reported estimated net worths of Trump’s picks so far:
- Betsy DeVos: $5.1 billion, married to Richard DeVos Jr., co-founder of AmWay and member of the DeVos political dynasty
- Wilbur Ross: $2.9 billion, “vulture investments”
- Elaine Chao: $37 million (together with husband Sen. Mitch McConnell), from family inheritance and sits on several corporate boards
- Steve Mnuchin: $40 million, former Goldman Sachs banker with Hollywood ties
- Tom Price: $13.6 million, former orthopedic surgeon
- Ben Carson: $26 million, former neurosurgeon and previous corporate board positions
- Linda McMahon: $1.16 billion, former World Wrestling Entertainment CEO
- Andy Puzder: $4.5 million, CEO of Hardee’s and Carl’s Jr.
- Vincent Viola: $1.8 billion, started Virtu Financial, the electronic trading firm
And they share more in common than just millions of dollars and a taste for expensive restaurants. They’re all outspoken opponents of LGBT rights.
In his Cabinet picks, Trump appears to be flagrantly abandoning his campaign promises to “drain the swamp” and eliminate big money interests once he takes office. The question is: When will Trump supporters realize they’ve been conned?
This post will be updated with additional appointments as they are formally announced.