President Donald Trump’s Cabinet is in flux again.
He has 24 official members of his Cabinet, and 111 days after he became president, the Senate confirmed all of them.
But there have been some changes since then.
During his tumultuous first year in office, multiple high-level hires withdrew from the confirmation process, and several senior advisers resigned, including former chief of staff Reince Priebus and former Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price.
On March 13, Trump fired his first secretary of state Rex Tillerson. Now two Cabinet members require Senate confirmation again.
Here’s who’s in Trump’s Cabinet, in order of the line of succession:
Secretary of State: Mike Pompeo (nominated)
Obama administration counterparts: Hillary Clinton, John Kerry
Duties: act as the top American diplomat, lead US foreign policy
Reactions: When he was nominated to be CIA director, several Republican lawmakers praised Pompeo’s directness, expressing confidence in his ability to lead the CIA. Pompeo has been criticised for anti-Muslim remarks he’s made in the past – scrutiny that reemerged after Trump announced his appointment. When Trump named Pompeo as Tillerson’s successor on March 13, Republican lawmakers largely applauded the move, while Democrats condemned it. Pompeo will likely be confirmed again with ease.
Senate confirmation vote: To come
Treasury Secretary: Steven Mnuchin (confirmed)
Obama administration counterparts: Timothy F. Geithner, Jack Lew
Duties: serve as the president’s principal economic adviser, manage the public debt, set US tax and fiscal policy
Reactions: As Business Insider’s Matt Turner writes, there’s a long list of reasons why people might not like Trump’s pick for Treasury secretary. Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders skewered Mnuchin’s status as a hedge fund manager who worked at a large financial institution like Goldman Sachs – two things Trump called out on the campaign trail, as well.
Senate confirmation vote: 53-47
Defence Secretary: Gen. James Mattis (confirmed)
Obama administration counterparts: Robert M. Gates, Leon Panetta, Chuck Hagel, Ashton Carter
Duties: lead the military, serve as “deputy commander-in-chief”
Reactions:Marines consider Mattis a warrior and he is well-respected by other service members. He has come under fire in the past for controversial admissions, however, like when he said in 2005 that it was “fun to shoot some people.” Still, senators on both sides of the aisle have praised the pick, though they had to waive a law requiring service members to wait seven years before becoming Defence Secretary to provide checks and balances.
Senate confirmation vote: 98-1
Attorney General: Sen. Jeff Sessions (confirmed)
Obama administration counterparts: Mark Filip, Eric Holder, Loretta Lynch
Duties: act as the country’s chief law enforcement officer, represent the US in court cases, provide the Executive Branch with formal and informal legal counsel and advice
Reactions: Sessions’ consideration for a Cabinet position has revived allegations of racism that jeopardized his chance to become a federal district court judge in 1986, when a prosecutor testified Sessions called the NAACP and the ACLU “un-American.” Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer said he was “very concerned” about Sessions’ civil rights record, a sentiment other liberals echoed. Many conservatives, meanwhile, applauded Trump’s choice, with Republican senators saying they’d vote to confirm him.
Senate confirmation vote: 52-47
Interior Secretary: Ryan Zinke (confirmed)
Obama administration counterparts: Ken Salazar, Sally Jewell
Duties: manage and conserve federal land and natural resources, oversee agencies including the National Park Service, Bureau of Land Management and United States Geological Survey
Reactions: Environmental groups expressed concern that while Zinke professes he wants to protect natural resources, his voting record shows his support for fossil fuel companies, particularly for coal mining on federal lands.
Senate confirmation vote: 68-31
Secretary of Agriculture: Sonny Perdue (confirmed)
Obama administration counterpart: Tom Vilsack
Duties: direct the $US155 billion Agriculture Department, which oversees farm subsidies, agriculture policy, and food stamps
Reactions: Perdue’s appointment is largely a non-controversial one. Some environmental groups put out statements saying they were concerned he wouldn’t protect drinking water or natural resources, but agricultural organisations seem pleased.
Senate confirmation vote: 87-11
Commerce Secretary: Wilbur Ross (confirmed)
Obama administration counterparts: Gary F. Locke, John E. Bryson, Penny Pritzker
Duties: promote American commerce and businesses
Reactions: There hasn’t been much opposition to Ross’ appointment. Some critics did bring up his billionaire, insider status and the fact that his coal company oversaw the Sago Mine disaster that killed a dozen people in 2005.
Senate confirmation vote: 72-27
Labour Secretary: Alexander Acosta (confirmed)
Obama administration counterparts: Hilda L. Solis, Thomas Perez
Duties: enforce labour laws, including ones involving unions and other business-citizen relations
Reactions: After polarising pick Andrew Puzder withdrew his nomination, many on both sides of the aisle viewed Acosta as a sensible choice for the job. The AFL-CIO trade union said Acosta’s nomination deserves “serious consideration.” The Senate has confirmed him for other roles three times, so he was expected to sail through again, and did.
Senate confirmation vote: 60-38
Health and Human Services Secretary: Alex Azar
Obama administration counterparts: Kathleen Sebelius, Sylvia Mathews Burwell
Duties: lead the Department of Health and Human Services, which oversees agencies like the FDA, CDC, NIH, and the Centres for Medicare & Medicaid Services
Reactions: Trump’s first secretary Tom Price resigned in September after sparking bipartisan outrage over the cost of his air travel. The Senate confirmed Azar’s nomination in January, splitting along party lines. Democrats lambasted Azar because Eli Lilly & Co raising its drug prices while he was president of its US unit for five years. Some patient and consumer advocacy groups opposed his nomination, as well, while Republicans and some medical groups praised Azar for his experience working in HHS under Bush 43.
Senate confirmation vote: 55-43
Housing and Urban Development Secretary: Dr. Ben Carson (confirmed)
Obama administration counterparts: Shaun Donovan, Julian Castro
Duties: increase home ownership, increase access to affordable housing free from discrimination
Reactions: House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi called Carson a “disturbingly unqualified choice” since he’s never worked specifically in housing or urban development, or held a government position. Other critics voiced similar concerns, also noting that Carson called fair housing policy “social engineering” in a 2015 opinion piece.
Senate confirmation vote: 58-41
Transportation Secretary: Elaine Chao (confirmed)
Obama administration counterparts: Ray H. LaHood, Anthony R. Foxx
Duties: lead the US Department of Transportation, which includes the Federal Aviation Administration and the Federal Highway Administration
Reactions: Uber and Lyft both said they approve of the choice, since Chao has said she supports the gig economy. There hasn’t been much opposition to Chao, especially because she’s a well-known, respected figure with experience at the federal level.
Senate confirmation vote: 93-6
Energy Secretary: Rick Perry (confirmed)
Obama administration counterparts: Steven Chu,Ernest Moniz
Reactions: Perry has said in the past he wants to eliminate the Department of Energy (though he also forgot its name), prompting supporters of the agency to question his appointment to lead it. Democrats also criticised Perry for sitting on the Board of Directors of the company behind the highly controversial Dakota Access Pipeline as an example of why he’s unfit for the post.
Senate confirmation vote: 62-37
Secretary of Education: Betsy DeVos (confirmed)
Obama administration counterparts: Arne Duncan,John King, Jr.
Duties: Lead the US Department of Education, manage federal financial aid policies, ensure equal access to education.
Reactions: While proponents of school vouchers have predictably lauded Trump’s pick, its opponents have lambasted DeVos, arguing that the programs weaken public schools and fund private schools at taxpayers’ expense. Teachers’ unions have similarly criticised her for not understanding the public school landscape since she sent her children to private schools.
Senate confirmation vote: 51-50 (Vice President Mike Pence had to cast the tie-breaking vote)
Secretary of Veterans Affairs: Dr. David J. Shulkin (confirmed)
Obama administration counterparts: Eric Shinseki, Robert A. McDonald
Duties: lead the agency that provides medical benefits and care for the nation’s veterans through the VA’s 1,233 health care facilities, manage the national cemeteries
Reactions: While Shulkin himself is not a veteran, his father was an Army captain and he was born on a military base. President Barack Obama nominated him to be under secretary for health at the VA after cleaning house following the 2014 scandal finding that the agency’s wait times were excessively long, jeopardizing its care of veterans.
Senate confirmation vote: 100-0
Homeland Security Secretary: Kirstjen Nielsen (confirmed)
Obama administration counterparts: Janet Napolitano, Rand Beers, Jeh Johnson
Duties: secure borders against illegal immigration, protect the president, respond to natural disasters, coordinate intelligence, counter terror threats. President George W. Bush created the Department of Homeland Security after 9/11.
Reactions:Nielsen, who Trump appointed after naming John Kelly his chief of staff, was known for being a brusque enforcer of Kelly’s agenda in the West Wing. Her reportedly curt, no-nonsense manner caused some controversy among Trump aides. There wasn’t much backlash to the appointment, because of Nielsen’s considerable national security and cybersecurity expertise.
Senate confirmation vote: 62-37
United Nations Ambassador: Gov. Nikki Haley (confirmed)
Obama administration counterparts: Susan Rice, Rosemary DiCarlo, Samantha Power
Duty: Advance US interests at the United Nations.
Reactions: Some diplomats criticised Haley for her lack of experience on the world stage since she has never held a position in the federal government. Democratic senators said she would get a “thorough” confirmation hearing, but that they would give her fair consideration.
Senate confirmation vote: 96-4
US Trade Representative: Robert Lighthizer (confirmed)
Obama administration counterparts: Ron Kirk, Michael Froman
Duties: America’s main trade negotiator, develop and recommend trade policy to the president, coordinate trade policy within the government
Reactions:Lighthizer lines up with Trump’s stances on trade, particularly his harsh criticism of China, and even praised the businessman’s trade policies in a 2011 op-ed in the Washington Times. Those who support free trade and disagree with Trump’s views on the issue are therefore likely to disagree with Lighthizer, too. He does have experience serving in the executive branch, however – a characteristic many of Trump’s Cabinet picks lack. Republican Sens. John McCain of Arizona and Ben Sasse of Nebraska voted against Lighthizer’s confirmation because of his opposition to the “North American Free Trade Agreement’s positive economic benefits.”
Senate confirmation vote: 82-14
Office of Management and Budget Director: Mick Mulvaney (confirmed)
Obama administration counterparts: Peter R. Orszag, Jacob J. Lew, Sylvia Mathews Burwell, Shaun Donovan
Duties: produce the president’s budget, lead the Office of Management and Budget
Reactions: Mulvaney’s desire to slash the federal budget is likely good news for Republican deficit hawks, but it clashes with Trump’s plans to increase infrastructure and defence spending.
Senate confirmation vote: 51-49
Environmental Protection Agency Administrator: Scott Pruitt (confirmed)
Obama administration counterparts: Lisa P. Jackson, Gina McCarthy
Duties: enforce US environmental laws like the Clean Air and Clean Water acts
Reactions: Environmental groups and Democratic leaders skewered the choice, citing Pruitt’s climate change denial and his pending lawsuits against the EPA. Pruitt has described himself as a “leading advocate against the EPA’s activist agenda,” leading opponents of Trump’s pick worried that he could dismantle the agency – and Obama’s environmental legacy in the process.
Senate confirmation vote: 52-46
Small Business Administration Administrator: Linda McMahon (confirmed)
Obama administration counterparts: Karen Mills, Maria Contreras-Sweet
Duties: lead the Small Business Administration, which helps Americans start, grow and manage small businesses through policy initiatives, assistance, and loans
Reactions: Since McMahon built her and her husband’s own small business into a massive empire, many are optimistic she will understand the needs of American small business owners.
Senate confirmation vote: 81-19
Director of National Intelligence: Dan Coats (confirmed)
Obama administration counterparts: Dennis C. Blair, James R. Clapper
Senate confirmation vote: 85-12
CIA Director: Gina Haspel (nominated)
Obama administration counterparts: Leon Panetta, David Petraeus, John Brennan
Duty: oversee the Central Intelligence Agency
Reactions: Haspel will face a difficult nomination process and likely be a bruising confirmation hearing given the many concerns about her record on torture. Human rights and civil liberties groups slammed Haspel, and many Democrats spoke out against her nomination. But Haspel is widely respected within the intelligence community, and nearly all Republicans said they support the choice.
Senate confirmation vote: To come
Chief of Staff: John Kelly
Obama administration counterparts: Rahm Emanuel, Pete Rouse, Bill Daley, Jack Lew, Denis McDonough
Duties: oversee the Executive Office of the President, serve as the president’s right-hand man
Reactions: As the third retired general Trump has selected for a top leadership role, Kelly’s choice for Homeland Security secretary sparked fears among some experts that the incoming administration could have an imbalance between civilian and military relations. Those who oppose Trump’s campaign promises likely won’t agree with Kelly’s support of the plan to build a wall on the border with Mexico or to keep the US military prison open in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. But many applauded Trump’s decision to move Kelly to the chief of staff role after Priebus was ousted in July, because in the Oval Office, the general’s presence has imposed more order.
No Senate confirmation necessary.
And here is the list of notable departures. Price and Tillerson were Cabinet members:
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