Democrats are already trying to head off a plan proposed by former President Donald Trump that would drain the swamp at a massive, unprecedented level.
Trump has said that if he runs for president in 2024 and is elected, he will implement a piece of his first term that never fully got off the ground.
Trump issued an executive order late in his term to move many jobs to a category called “Schedule F” and take them out of union-protected status, making them “at will” employees. That would mean multiple levels of workers could be fired for non-performance of a president’s policy. The order was rescinded by President Joe Biden in the first few days of his term.
Trump is already out in the open about “firing the swamp,” Breitbart News reported.
Trump’s prepared remarks for his recent Turning Point USA Student Action Summit touched on the proposal.
“To drain the swamp, we need to fire the swamp. With schedule F, I took executive action to make it possible to fire federal employees who are bypassing our democracy to advance wokeism and corruption,” the remarks stated.
“We now need Congress to institute historic reforms to permanently empower the president to root out the deep state, and ensure that any bureaucrat who is corrupt, incompetent, or unnecessary can be told, ‘You’re fired.'”
Trump has not made any official announcement about seeking the White House again, but the speech left little doubt those would be in his plans if he were to win a second term.
As evidenced by a report Tuesday in Axios, that prospect clearly has Senate Democrats worried.
A new bill would require the executive branch to get the permission of Congress before a civil service position can be reclassified.
The bill is sponsored by Democratic Sen. Tim Kaine of Virginia and co-sponsored by Democratic Sens. Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen of Maryland, Dianne Feinstein and Alex Padilla of California and Mark Warner of Virginia.
The bill passed the House in July, Connelly wrote in a July 26 piece published by The Washington Post.
“Congress must assert itself and ensure no future president can repeat what Trump has already tried to do once, and now is reportedly planning to do again,” Connelly wrote.
On July 31, the Orange County (California) Register published a piece by syndicated columnist Susan Shelley that pushed back against the notion that the plan spells dire tidings for the federal civil service, arguing instead that the proposal could be the “death knell for what has come to be known as the ‘Administrative State.’”
“How many Americans are even aware that U.S. policy is made by permanent civil servants who can’t be fired, not even if they’re enacting and enforcing policies that contradict the policies of the elected president?” wrote Shelley, who is also vice president of communications for the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association.
“Welcome to the Administrative State, which President Trump sometimes called the ‘Deep State.’ It’s the government within a government that does not answer to anybody,” she wrote.
In a Twitter post, Axios congressional reporter Alayna Treene wrote that the goal of the “Schedule F” executive order is shared by numerous Republicans.
“Schedule F could be the blueprint for the next GOP president, even if it’s not Trump,” she wrote.
I spoke to Pompeo, Team DeSantis, Sens. Hawley, Cruz, Rubio & Rick Scott
All have major issues with federal bureaucracy
The 1 dissenting voice: MD Gov Larry Hogan
Schedule F could be the blueprint for the next GOP president, even if it’s not Trump https://t.co/HOTdT6owo5
— Alayna Treene (@alaynatreene) August 3, 2022
Shelley’s column explained why:
“The Schedule F executive order would have removed civil service protections from an estimated 50,000 federal workers who have a role in shaping policy,” Shelley wrote. “For context, there are more than 2 million federal employees, and a new president is empowered to replace only about 4,000 of them. It’s safe to assume, given the speed with which President Biden rescinded the Schedule F executive order, that the policy-making civil servants generally agree with his policy views. Biden had no desire to replace them.”
Shelley derided claims that federal workers were there to ensure a president cannot change policy in radical ways.
“There’s nothing in the Constitution that empowers mid-level bureaucrats to exercise ‘checks on executive power.’ However, in the Administrative State, they do,” she wrote
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