President Donald Trump often touts about transparency – however, what he does in the White House is the exact opposite.
According to reports, Trump has a habit of tearing papers apart after he finishes them, although, the document preservation laws require the White House to keep schedules, memos, speeches, public digital communications of the president.
The National Archives staff reportedly reminded the White House on frequent bases to follow the Presidential Records Act, but Trump’s staff has been “haphazard” in document preservation – all thanks to their boss who makes everything difficult for them.
Former staffers at the White House, who handled Trump’s mess, told Politico they were tasked with taping the torn papers back and making sure the administration did not violate legal requirements to preserve presidential records.
Solomon Lartey was the records management analyst at the White House. He used to spend hours putting ripped paper pieces back together. He earned a little over $65,000 annually to solve this important government transparency “jigsaw puzzle.”
Sometimes his job was easy when the papers were torn in half or quarters. Other times, things were tough when Trump tore pieces into tiny bits of “confetti.”
Instead of teaching the commander-in-chief something new, the staff just cleaned up his mess.
“We got Scotch tape, the clear kind,” Lartey told Politico. “You found pieces and taped them back together and then you gave it back to the supervisor.” “I had a letter from Schumer — he tore it up,” he said. “It was the craziest thing ever. He ripped papers into tiny pieces.”
According to the former staffer, after the papers were fixed with tape, they were sent to the National Archives where they were filed.
“We had to endure this under the Trump administration,” said another former senior records management analyst, Reginald Young, Jr. “I’m looking at my director, and saying, ‘Are you guys serious?’ We’re making more than $60,000 a year, we need to be doing far more important things than this. It felt like the lowest form of work you can take on without having to empty the trash cans.”
Both the staffers were fired.
The White House did not comment on the details given by the staffers.
Thumbnail/Banner Image: Reuters, Jonathan Ernst