Another Trump pick is out. This time it’s his nominee for Navy secretary, Philip Bilden, who is withdrawing because he couldn’t meet the requirements of federal ethics laws.
Sources in the White House and the Navy told USNI News that Bilden’s extensive financial holdings would likely not meet the Office of Government Ethics standards to serve in the position. In order to serve he would have to divest much of his foreign holdings, USNI News understands.
According to Secretary of Defense James Mattis, Bilden’s decision was “driven by privacy concerns and significant challenges he faced in separating himself from his business interests.”
Trump’s pick for secretary of the Army, billionaire Vincent Viola, withdraw a few weeks ago citing a similar inability to disentangle himself from his businesses. It turns out giving up most or all of your business holdings in order to go work for Donald Trump, who has not divested from his own, is not as appetizing a deal as the White House may have made it out to be in the pep talks.
Especially considering, you know, the whole “this administration has been in power for a month and has already decayed into a smoke-belching dumpster fire” thing.
As an aside: It was just eight days ago that Press Secretary Sean Spicer condemned reports that Bilden would withdraw, tweeting that he was “100% committed” to the job.