Warren Blasts Trump For Stocking Transition With Lobbyists And Bankers

Committee member  Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Ma.,  questions witnesses  during a Senate Specials Committee on Aging hearing on drastic price hikes by Valeant and a handful of other drugmakers that have stoked outrage from patients, physicians and politicians nationwide, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, April 27, 2016,. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)
Manuel Balce Ceneta/AP

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) sharply criticized President-elect Donald Trump on Tuesday for populating his transition team with the very lobbyists and political insiders he had previously targeted with his “drain the swamp” campaign.

“The American people are watching to see if you were sincere in your campaign promises,” Warren wrote in a letter to Trump, referencing his pledge to “not be controlled by the donors, special interests and lobbyists who have corrupted our politics and politicians for far too long.”

The reality of Trump’s transition team and rumored cabinet choices, Warren noted, is a harsh departure from that rhetoric.

Warren spent the bulk of her letter describing to Trump the various industry ties of the “over twenty Wall Street elites, industry insiders, and lobbyists making decisions that could have huge implications for their clients or employers” who Trump has either staffed on his transition team or flagged as possible members of his administration.

She listed several Wall Street financiers “with demonstrated records of failure during the 2008 financial crisis:” David Malpass, Paul Atkins, Steve Mnuchin and Lewis Eisenberg. She also pointed to lobbyists advising the transition team who represent the oil industry, telecommunications companies and defense manufacturers, who could then recommend colleagues to police the corporations they used to represent.

“The early reports of who is on your transition team indicate that, despite your campaign promises, you are looking to industry insiders, lobbyists and other special interests to shape Washington D.C. under your administration,” Warren wrote.

But she ended the letter optimistically: “I would be more than happy to provide you with a list of qualified advisers and potential nominees.”