Yes, it’s possible. It’s possible that Donald Trump will become the next president of the United States. It’s also possible that Donald Trump could select more than one or two African Americans for key positions in his administration if he wins the GOP nomination and does go on to win the White House.
Trump has a few vocal black fans out there. “I think it’s a pretty awesome thing that he’s doing so well,” former heavyweight boxing champion Mike Tyson told the New York Post in March.
But of course we understand that this isn’t just any presidential candidate. This is the man who loves to say “bold” things and “tell it like it is,” George Wallace style, at the altar of anti-political correctness.
“If Hillary was a man, she’d get 5 percent of the vote. … I think the only thing she’s got going is the woman’s card,” Trump said of Hillary Clinton on April 26, as if Clinton’s terms as a U.S. senator and a secretary of state were just side hustles.
That said, there are some obvious African Americans who have either been with the campaign from the beginning or have emerged within the last year. Four African Americans in particular would be most likely to serve in a Trump White House.
1. Dr. Ben Carson
Carson has been a not-so-hot and less-than-enthusiastic surrogate for the Trump campaign. But that doesn’t mean he won’t end up as surgeon general or as secretary of health and human services. The banter between Trump and Carson during debates was always amiable.
2. Omarosa Manigault
It’s all but certain that the former Apprentice competitor would be an adviser in a Trump administration. Senior adviser? Communications adviser? A Valerie Jarrett-type role? Hard to tell. But her efforts as a top surrogate from the beginning are sure to be rewarded with a job.
3. Katrina Pierson
The White House briefing room—if Trump actually allows any reporters in it (penned off, of course)—could become a much livelier place if Pierson became what she is most likely to become in a Trump administration: the White House spokeswoman. Given her no-blink, uncompromising answers to some of the most inconceivable questions about her controversial boss, the White House briefing room should be comparatively easy.
4. Darrell Scott
This pastor of the New Spirit Revival Center in Cleveland sure has made an effort to be supportive of a certain billionaire real estate mogul from New York running for president. When Scott was asked by The Root to say what, exactly, Trump would do for black voters, he answered, “Trump asked us for a list of community programs that we were doing here in the city. He said once he becomes president, he’ll take every one of them national!”
Who knows? There may end up being substance to that promise. Would Scott depart Cleveland for Washington? Hard to say, but Scott was quick to depart Cleveland for New York in November 2015 for the famous endorsement/nonendorsement meeting of black pastors at Trump Tower.
Trump has gone out of his way to pound President Barack Obama over African Americans’ agenda items, especially jobs. “Donald Trump will do a great job for African Americans. I’ll bring back jobs to this country from China and many other places, and I’ll let people work and make a great living. I will be great for African Americans,” Trump said earlier this year. In fewer than 200 days, we’ll know whether or not that answer comes in the form or policy, staff hires or just more talk.
Lauren Victoria Burke is a Washington, D.C.-based political reporter who writes the Crew of 42 blog. She appears regularly on NewsOne Now with Roland Martin on TV One. Follow her on Twitter.