Trump picks Goldman Sachs chief for top economic adviser: report

Trump picks Goldman Sachs chief for top economic adviser: report
© Getty Images

Donald TrumpDonald TrumpThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - White House, Dems play blame game over evictions The Memo: Left pins hopes on Nina Turner in Ohio after recent defeats Biden administration to keep Trump-era rule of turning away migrants during pandemic MORE has picked Goldman Sachs President Gary Cohn to direct the National Economic Council in the White House, NBC News reported Friday morning.

ADVERTISEMENT

The council helps advise the president on economic policy.

Cohn would be the second Goldman-linked appointment for the president-elect, who already named former Goldman Sachs partner Steven Mnuchin as Treasury secretary.

Cohn met with the president-elect at Trump Tower in late November, according to pool reports, setting off speculation that the Wall Street executive would be a part of the administration.

Trump was a vocal critic of Wall Street banks on the campaign trail and repeatedly called on Democratic nominee Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonFive things to watch in two Ohio special election primaries Clintons, Stacey Abrams meeting Texas Democrats Biden says Russia spreading misinformation ahead of 2022 elections MORE to release the transcripts of the paid speeches she delivered to Goldman Sachs. He also accused former GOP primary rival Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzUp next in the culture wars: Adding women to the draft Biden's bipartisan deal faces Senate gauntlet 228 Republican lawmakers urge Supreme Court to overrule Roe v. Wade MORE (Texas) of being “owned” by Goldman Sachs.

Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein said in October that he was backing Clinton for president. 

Critics have scrutinized some of Trump’s Cabinet picks, arguing they go against his vow to “drain the swamp” in Washington.

Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - White House, Dems play blame game over evictions The Memo: Left pins hopes on Nina Turner in Ohio after recent defeats Five things to watch in two Ohio special election primaries MORE (I-Vt.), an outspoken critic of Wall Street, blasted the Cohn appointment.

Cohn is the latest wealthy addition to a Cabinet that already has a net worth of $14.5 billion, according to NBC News. According to Vanity Fair, his salary from Goldman Sachs is around $22 million a year.

During a rally in Des Moines, Iowa, on Thursday night, Trump defended his Cabinet selections, saying rich people are especially qualified to run the government.

“One newspaper criticized me: ‘Why can’t we have people of modest means?' " he said. “Because I want people that made a fortune. Because now they’re negotiating with you.”

“These people are giving up fortunes of income in order to make a dollar a year, and they’re so proud to do it," Trump added.

Cohn, who is a registered Democrat, has donated to members and committees in both parties. He contributed to Senate Democrats’ campaign arm between 2004 and 2008. More recently, he gave money to House Republicans’ campaign arm in 2015, as well as to senators on both sides of the aisle.