President-elect Donald Trump is engaging in some of the same behavior former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was heavily criticized for during the presidential campaign, including cozying up to Goldman Sachs executives and giving favors to donors, according to a news analysis.
The Associated Press pointed out that at least three former Goldman Sachs executives will hold high-level positions in Trump's cabinet, including Goldman Sachs president Gary Cohn for the top spot in the White House National Economic Council; Steven Mnuchin, who worked at the firm for 17 years, for Treasury secretary; and Steve Bannon, Trump's chief strategist and senior counselor, who worked at Goldman Sachs after graduating from Harvard Business School.
But on Sep. 28, shortly after transcripts of Clinton's paid speeches to Goldman Sachs and other financial institutions were leaked to the public, Trump blasted Clinton on his website for the “decidedly pro Wall Street” speeches and insinuated she was corrupt for taking millions of dollars in speaking fees.
Trump has also given cabinet positions to big donors, including World Wrestling Entertainment co-founder Linda McMahon.
McMahon donated more than $7.5 million to a pro-Trump Super PAC and was recently tapped by the president-elect to be the leader of the Small Business Administration.
Trump said McMahon “helped grow WWE from a modest 13-person operation to a publicly traded global enterprise with more than 800 employees in offices worldwide,” reported USA Today. “Linda is going to be a phenomenal leader and champion for small businesses and unleash America's entrepreneurial spirit all across the country."
According to The Washington Post, six donors who have been appointed to Trump's cabinet donated a total of nearly $12 million to his campaign and/or party.
“In the past, [big donors] were a little hidden — they were sent overseas to be ambassadors,” said David Donnelly, president of Every Voice, which tracks the influence of wealthy donors on politics. “In this administration, they are going to be front and center making policy.”
But back in May, Trump told a crowd in Lynden, Washington, that it would be Clinton, not him, who would be a puppet for her donors.
"Crooked Hillary. Look, can you imagine another four years of the Clintons? Seriously. It's time to move on. And she's totally controlled by Wall Street and all these people that gave her millions," Trump said, according to the AP.