Donald Trump has named a new Acting Director of National Intelligence, someone who will have to get on-the-job training.
….for the wonderful job he has done, and we look forward to working with him closely, perhaps in another capacity within the Administration!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 20, 2020
MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow points out (watch above) that “he (Grenell) is a Trump loyalist who has never served a day in the intelligence community in any capacity, which would be a new thing for someone appointed to become the National Director of Intelligence. Mr. Grenell would be in charge of all 17 U.S. intelligence agencies despite having no intelligence experience whatsoever.”
Grenell’s last job didn’t exactly go off without a hitch either. The New York Times reports:
As ambassador, Mr. Grenell made public statements that some German officials took as expressing opposition to the government there, an extraordinary intervention into domestic affairs that diplomats typically avoid. He attacked what he called “failed” open-border policies in Germany, which has resettled hundreds of thousands of Syrian refugees, and criticized Berlin’s stances on Iran, military spending and Chinese investment in global telephone networks. He also expressed an eagerness to empower conservatives throughout Europe.
MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough pointed out, “This is the definition of failing up. He failed miserably in Germany but at least wasn’t a threat to America’s national security. As Acting DNI, he will. Trump’s team of “acting” lackeys just keep getting worse.”
While Grenell lacks the experience for the job, he clearly skyrocketed to the top of Trump’s list based on his support for the president. The Washington Post writes:
Grenell’s loyalty to the president extends beyond his public statements. In 2018, internal documents from the Trump International Hotel in Washington listed Grenell as a “Gold” level member of the Trump Organization’s “Trump Card” loyalty program.
This is the second time that Trump has given a prominent post to a high-level Trump Card member. Kelly Craft, Trump’s ambassador to the United Nations, also had gold status, according to the 2018 documents — “VIP Arrivals” lists that the hotel used to alert employees to important guests. The lists were obtained by The Washington Post.
The first openly gay member of Trump’s cabinet, Grenell, was also previously a Fox News contributor. That no doubt put him on Trump’s radar as well.
As for the current acting DNI, Joseph Maguire was reportedly shocked that he would be vacating his position, but without Senate confirmation, his days were numbered. The same may already be said for Grenell. CNN writes:
He is expected to last only a matter of months, sources familiar with the situation said. Grenell will hold the position for roughly 90 days, one of the sources said, and he took the job under that understanding. Trump in theory could use the time to continue searching for a permanent DNI to nominate.“This is just a brief thing,” the source said. “Some Republicans are outraged with the job he has done as ambassador, there is no way he could get confirmed,” a source familiar with the move said.
This is beyond dangerous.
Grenell is a Trump cultist and Trump will use him to ensure that our intelligence officials act and Trump’s personal and political best interests, not America’s.
Worse, he will be “acting” DNI, so the Senate will have no say in him being installed. https://t.co/yKWDNzKuD0
— VoteVets (@votevets) February 19, 2020