Home/Rod Dreher/Annals Of Trumpian Populism

Annals Of Trumpian Populism

Jes' folks: Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin and wife Louise Linton (Joe Seer/Shutterstock)

If this is right-wing populism, you can stick it where the sun don’t shine:

Secretary Steven Mnuchin requested use of a government jet to take him and his wife on their honeymoon in Scotland, France and Italy earlier this summer, sparking an “inquiry” by The Treasury Department’s Office of Inspector General, sources tell ABC News.

Officials familiar with the matter say the highly unusual ask for a U.S. Air Force jet, which according to an Air Force spokesman could cost roughly $25,000 per hour to operate, was put in writing by the secretary’s office but eventually deemed unnecessary after further consideration of by Treasury Department officials.

Senator Ron Wyden (D-Oregon), the top Democrat on the Senate Finance Committee, said in an interview with ABC News that Mnuchin’s request for a government jet on his honeymoon defies common sense.

“You don’t need a giant rulebook of government requirements to just say yourself, ‘This is common sense, it’s wrong,'” Wyden said. “That’s just slap your forehead stuff.”

According to Fortune, Donald Trump’s Treasury Secretary, a former Goldman Sachs banker, is worth around $500 million. And yet, he tried to stick the taxpayer with the cost of flying him and his bride overseas on their honeymoon.

The effrontery of that creep! You might remember his wife, Louise Linton, had a full let-them-eat-cake Instagram meltdown earlier this year when a plebeian criticized her for appearing to take a government jet on a fab getaway:


Blessed is the Democratic maker of campaign commercials who gets to work with material like this in 2018 and 2020.

Chris Arnade, who traveled over 100,000 miles around the US during the campaign season talking to poor and working-class Americans, wrote days before the 2016 election:

The first voter I heard mention Donald Trump’s name was a mechanic in a small town near my upstate New York home. It was days after Trump announced his run, and I was at the start of a drive across the United States.

The man, like many Trump supporters then, didn’t want his name used or his picture taken. An outraged press was loudly mocking Trump and he was embarrassed. But he was clear why he would vote for Trump. “There’s no American dream for anyone who isn’t a lawyer or banker,” he said. “Everyone else, we are getting a raw deal. Immigrants are taking all our jobs.”

And yet, that man’s vote got him a Treasury Secretary worth half a billion dollars who expects people like him to pay for him and his actress wife to jet off to Europe for a honeymoon. Ain’t that America…

about the author

Rod Dreher is a senior editor at The American Conservative. He has written and edited for the New York Post, The Dallas Morning News, National Review, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, the Washington Times, and the Baton Rouge Advocate. Rod’s commentary has been published in The Wall Street Journal, Commentary, the Weekly Standard, Beliefnet, and Real Simple, among other publications, and he has appeared on NPR, ABC News, CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, and the BBC. He lives in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, with his wife Julie and their three children. He has also written four books, The Little Way of Ruthie Leming, Crunchy Cons, How Dante Can Save Your Life, and The Benedict Option.

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