U.S. Politics

You’re Hired! A Master List Of Rumored Top Trump Appointees

Evan Vucci


It’s the biggest parlor game in DC when a new President comes to town: Who will occupy the top spots in the new administration?

While resumes are polished, back channels opened and the public and private preening begins, dubious lists appear of prospective, rumored, and wannabe appointees, some lists more reliably informed than others.

TPM will maintain a master list of all of the reported possible picks for the top slots–far-fetched or not–crossing them off as they are eliminated from consideration.

It will be an evolving list so check back as Trump builds out a new administration from scratch.

Click on a link below to go directly to that position:

Secretary of State | Secretary of Treasury | Secretary of Defense | Attorney General | Secretary of the Interior | Secretary of Agriculture | Secretary of Commerce | Secretary of Labor | Secretary of Health and Human Services | Secretary of Energy | Secretary of Education | Secretary of Veterans Affairs | Secretary of Homeland Security | Chief of Staff | White House Counsel | Communications Director | Press Secretary | RNC Chair| Director of Office of Management and Budget | EPA Administrator

Secretary of State:

John Bolton, former U.S. Ambassador to the UN

Sen. Bob Corker (R-TN) chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, who has expressed interest in the role

Newt Gingrich, former Speaker of the House

Richard Haass, president of the Council on Foreign Relations

Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL)

Treasury Secretary:

Steve Mnunchin, Goldman banker and Trump finance chair

JP Morgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon, though he said he would not be interested

Rep. Jeb Hensarling (R-TX), chairman of the House Financial Services committee

Businessman Carl Icahn

Secretary of Defense:

Retired Lt. Gen. Mike Flynn, former director of the Defense Intelligence Agency

Stephen Hadley, Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs under the George W. Bush Administration

Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-CA)

Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL)

Former Sen. Jim Talent (R-MO)

Former Sen. Jon Kyl (R-AZ)

Attorney General:

Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, pegged as top contender by Politico

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie

Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL)

Pam Bondi, Attorney General of Florida

Secretary of the Interior:

Forrest Lucas, oilman

Jan Brewer, former Arizona governor

Gov. Mary Fallin of Oklahoma

Robert Grady, venture capitalist

Harold Hamm, Oklahoma oilman

Rep. Cynthia Lummis (R-WY)

Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin

Donald Trump Jr. reportedly has interest in the job

Secretary of Agriculture:

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback

Chuck Conner, CEO National Council of Farmer Cooperatives

Dave Heineman, former Governor of Nebraska

Sid Miller, Texas’ Secretary of Agriculture

Former Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue

Mike McCloskey, major dairy executive from Indiana

Bruce Rastetter, major GOP donor in Iowa

Kip Tom, farmer who ran unsuccessful Indiana congressional campaign

Don Villwock, president of Indiana Farm Bureau

Ted McKinney, director of Indiana Department of Agriculture

Secretary of Commerce:

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie

Dan DiMicco, Former Nucor CEO and Trump trade adviser

Businessman Lew Eisenberg

Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee

Sen. David Perdue (R-GA)

Former Missouri Sen. Jim Talent

Wilbur Ross, billionaire investor & Trump economic adviser

Former Texas Governor Rick Perry

Secretary of Labor:

Victoria Lipnic, EEOC commissioner

Secretary of Health and Human Services:

Former New Jersey state Sen. Rich Bagger, though Politico calls the suggestion a “longer shot”

Ben Carson

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich

Florida Gov. Rick Scott

Secretary of Energy:

Venture Capitalist Robert Grady

Harold Hamm, Continental Resources CEO

Secretary of Education:

Trump has suggested the Department of Education will be reduced, if not completely dismantled, in his administration, but that has not diminished speculation.

Ben Carson

William Evers, Hoover Institution fellow and senior advisor to Bush Administration’s Secretary of Education

Veterans Affairs:

Rep. Jeff Miller (R-FL)

Secretary of Homeland Security:

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie

Sheriff David Clarke of Milwaukee County

Rep. Michael McCaul (R-TX), House Homeland Security chair

Chief of Staff:

Reince Priebus, RNC Chairman, considered top contender according to BuzzFeed and NBC

Steve Bannon, Trump’s campaign chief and executive chairman of Breitbart

Jared Kushner, Ivanka Trump’s husband and owner of the New York Observer, was seen walking with Obama’s Chief of Staff Denis McDonough, igniting speculation he might be in the running for the position under a Trump administration.

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie

Rudy Giuliani

Reince Priebus

White House Counsel:

Donald McGahn, Trump campaign counsel

Communications Director:

Jason Miller, Trump campaign senior communications adviser

Hope Hicks, Trump campaign press secretary

Press Secretary:

Jason Miller – via CNN

Sean Spicer, RNC communications director

RNC Chair:

Corey Lewandowski, Trump’s former campaign manager and current CNN contributor

David Bossie, Trump’s deputy campaign manager

Director of Office of Management and Budget:

Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL)

Environmental Protection Agency Administrator:

Myron Ebell, an official at Competitive Enterprise Institute, who has running Trump’s EPA working group

Robert Grady, venture capitalist

Joe Aiello, director, New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection’s Division of Environmental Safety and Quality Assurance

Carol Comer, commissioner, Indiana Department of Environmental Management

Leslie Rutledge, Attorney General of Arkansas



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