Do you need an example of the non-ideology that drives Donald J. Trump?
Here’s one. Take a look at who he has chosen to become director of the Office of Management and Budget … and then square that — if you can — with what Trump has proposed doing as president of the United States.
The OMB director-designate is Mick Mulvaney, a South Carolina member of the U.S. House of Representatives. Mulvaney is a fierce budget hawk, a founding member of the House Freedom Caucus, a TEA Party golden boy.
Mulvaney fights spending measures whenever he can. He says Congress spends too much money. Government is too big, too hungry for taxpayers’ money.
He’s a conservative’s conservative.
What does Trump want to do? He wants to spend a trillion dollars to improve the nation’s highway, bridge and rail infrastructure.
How in the world is he going to do that? Where is he going to get the money? How will he get this past his budget director, the guy who hates government spending with a purple passion?
Well, Trump is going to be the president. Mulvaney will answer to him, not the other way around.
Still, this appointment speaks to the puzzle that is Donald Trump. He ran as a populist, then has named a large number of billionaires to his inner circle. He said he knows “more about ISIS than the generals,” then picks three general-grade officers to his national security team. He spoke of his desire to improve public education, then selects a known foe of public education as the nation’s education secretary.
Now we have Mick Mulvaney being nominated to run the White House budget office. Mulvaney is a fiscal skinflint who’s going to work for a president intent on spending lots of money while hoping to enact tax cuts that will favor the wealthiest of Americans.
Oh, wait! He’s a populist, too!
Go figure. Any of it!