Draining the Swamp: Mass exodus of senior staff from State Dept.

Thu, 26 Jan 2017 22:13:05 +0000


President Donald John Trump is living up to another campaign promise — Drain the Swamp.

The State Department is notorious for being a bastion of liberal bureaucrats, even in Republican administrations. It is also a corrupt bureaucracy.

Recall that Hillary Clinton, as Secretary of State, was head of the department for 3+ years (2009-2013), which she used as a personal “pay-for-play” fiefdom, while she took foreign policy orders from George Soros. See:

Recall also how uncooperative the State Department was in the FBI’s investigation of Hillary’s illicit private email server. See:

According to an FBI document, the State Department’s “7th Floor Group” is referred to as America’s “shadow government”. (See “FBI confirms U.S. has a shadow government“)

So if any federal bureaucracy’s swamp needed draining, the State Department is top of the list.


Daniel Halper and Bob Fredericks report for the New York Post that yesterday, January 25, on the same day of Secretary of State-designate Rex Tillerson’s visit to Foggy Bottom to introduce himself, four senior State Department officials resigned. All four were long-time staffers who had served under both Democratic and Republican administrations:

  1. Patrick F. Kennedy, long-time Undersecretary for Management who had been with the State Department since 1973; named in an FBI document as a member of the State Department’s powerful 7th Floor Group. (No relation to the Kennedy clan.)
  2. Assistant Secretary of State for Administration Joyce Anne Barr.
  3. Assistant Secretary of State for Consular Affairs Michele Bond.
  4. Ambassador Gentry O. Smith, director of the Office of Foreign Missions.

Acting State Department spokesman Mark Toner said:

“As is standard with every transition, the outgoing administration, in coordination with the incoming one, requested all politically appointed officers submit letters of resignation. These positions are political appointments, and require the president to nominate and the Senate to confirm them in these roles. They are not career appointments but of limited term. These officers have served admirably and well. Their departure offers a moment to consider their accomplishments and thank them for their service.”

The Washington Post reported the four had all resigned rather than serve under President Trump, but a source close to the White House denied that. The source told the New York Post:

Pat Kennedy was fired. He may be saving face and pretending that he resigned but he was let go. The poorly performing senior leaders at State will also be pushed out. You should expect other ‘resignations’ there, too.”

Even before the departures of Kennedy, Barr, Bond and Smith, the swamp at the State Department already had begun draining. On Trump’s inauguration on January 20, two other State Department officials left:

  • Assistant Secretary of State for Diplomatic Security Gregory Starr, who retired.
  • Director of the Bureau of Overseas Building Operations Lydia Muniz.

Already, there’s hand-wringing over the mass exodus:

  • David Wade, who served as State Department chief of staff under John Kerry, said: “It’s the single biggest simultaneous departure of institutional memory that anyone can remember, and that’s incredibly difficult to replicate. Department expertise in security, management, administrative and consular positions in particular are very difficult to replicate and particularly difficult to find in the private sector.”
  • Ambassador Richard Boucher, the State Department spokesman for Colin Powell and Condoleezza Rice, said the mass exodus will make it harder for Tillerson to hit the ground running: “You don’t run foreign policy by making statements, you run it with thousands of people working to implement programs every day. To undercut that is to undercut the institution.”

In other drain-the-swamp news, today — a day after Trump announced plans to build a wall at the Mexican border and hire 5,000 Border Patrol agents — U.S. Border Patrol chief Mark Morgan is gone. It is not immediately clear whether Morgan quit or was canned. (See “President Trump fulfills more promises: build wall, defund sanctuary cities, rebuild infrastructure & manufacturing, work toward energy independence“)

UPDATE: AP reports that according to a U.S. official who spoke on condition of anonymity, “Morgan said he was asked to leave and decided to resign rather than fight the request.”

See also:


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