Swamp Watch – 3 January 2017

For indispensable reporting on the coronavirus crisis, the election, and more, subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter.


It’s been a while since I’ve done one of these. After a flurry of activity Trump slowed down when he got to the tail end of his cabinet, but today he finally decided on a nominee for US Trade Representative. It might seem as if this position is more important than usual, since Trump campaigned heavily on trade, but it’s probably not. Trump has already said that his commerce secretary will be more involved than usual in trade deals; Peter Navarro will head up a new National Trade Council; and Jason Greenblatt, Trump’s longtime business lawyer, will be his “special representative for international negotiations.”

That’s a lot of cooks stirring the broth, and it’s unclear just how much influence Lighthizer will have on this team. That said, Lighthizer knows the ins and outs of trade law, so he’ll be pretty useful in a technical capacity. Aside from that, he’s been a DC lawyer and lobbyist for the past two decades, but hasn’t served in a government position since the Reagan administration. Does that make him part of the swamp? I’m not sure.

DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily bluster—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily bluster—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate