You knew it was true. Here are some details.
Trump left behind a damaged government. Here’s what Biden faces as he rebuilds it.
[What kinds of things did Trump do to cripple the government? Short story: Simply fire, move, or mistreat all its most important people. Behaviors that are right up Trump's alley.]More than 18 months after the Agriculture Department relocated two research agencies from Washington to Kansas City, Mo., prompting a major exodus from both divisions, the agencies are still struggling to regain their strength.
[Yeah, that's a good tactic: Moving things from one city another is incredibly disruptive. In addition to all the physical changes, it also mixes up personnel, since some of the most experienced and useful people will simply not make the move.]Even after a round of hiring in the past year, the permanent staff of the Economic Research Service is down 33 percent from where it was near the end of the Obama administration, and the National Institute of Food and Agriculture workforce has declined 34 percent. According to USDA, they have 115 and 130 job vacancies, respectively.“We lost some of the nation’s best economists and agricultural scientists in the previous administration,” USDA spokesman Matt Herrick said in an email. “It will take time for the new administration to rebuild USDA’s scientific and research agencies and restore their confidence and morale.”The problems at the Agriculture Department are reflected across the government. A few weeks after taking office, Biden and his team are confronted with numerous challenges, including smoothing over chaotic operations, boosting flagging morale and staffing up agencies that dwindled. To achieve their policy goals, they must move quickly to communicate a sense of mission, build expertise, improve performance, assure stability and regain public confidence, analysts say.
... “You had a president who went to war with his own workforce,” Stier added. “It’s not like you flip a switch and the loss of expertise and harm to morale reverse themselves.”Looking across the agencies, Stier and other experts on the federal government see symptoms of the damaged bureaucracy: Key jobs are unfilled, talent has departed, departments were politicized, and morale was harmed. Civil servants have hunkered in a defensive crouch as Trump and his allies demanded political loyalty, tested their professionalism and called them the intransigent “deep state.”
[So in other words, Trump just did to the Federal government what he has done to every employee of every business he has ever owned.]“The more time I spend in DC at the start of this Administration, the more I see what the career civil servants were forced to endure these last 4 years,” Andy Slavitt, a senior adviser for Biden’s coronavirus response, wrote on Twitter recently, praising the “quiet heroism” of the federal workforce.
... Good-government groups have advised the new administration to consider launching a broad effort to rehire civil servants who left or were forced out during the past four years, particularly those with hard-to-replace expertise in their fields.