President-elect Donald Trump continues to hold a marathon series of meetings as he prepares his team ahead of the inauguration. On Nov. 21, one of Trump's meetings at the Trump Tower in Manhattan, New York, was with star Democratic Rep. Tulsi Gabbard.
According to the Daily Mail, Gabbard, a Democrat from Hawaii, resigned from a Democratic National Committee position in February to support the primaries campaign of Sen. Bernie Sanders.
“[Trump] asked me to meet with him to discuss our current policies regarding Syria, our fight against terrorist groups like al-Qaeda and ISIS, as well as other foreign policy challenges we face,” Gabbard wrote in a Nov. 21 post to Medium.com.
According to ABC News, Gabbard is a top candidate for several positions in the Trump cabinet, including Secretary of State, Secretary of Defense, and United Nations Ambassador.
If appointed, Gabbard will be the first woman and the youngest person in Trump’s cabinet.
“It would have been easier for me to refuse this meeting,” Gabbard continued in her post. “The establishment and social media has been talking about this all day. But I never have and never will play politics with American and Syrian lives. ... In fact, like President Obama, I strongly believe that now is the time for us to put our country first, and come together, regardless of political party, and tackle the many challenges we face.”
According to The Hill, Gabbard opposed the no-fly zone in Syria, and her break with the DNC caught Trump’s attention.
Gabbard “went against her party quite boldly early on,” a Trump aide noted.
Trump’s campaign manager, Kellyanne Conway, added: "There’s a recognition that there’s a big country out there with lots of voters that feel disaffected from their party, the Democrats."