Acting DNI Is A ‘Gold Status’ Member Of The “Trump Card” Club
U.S. Ambassador to Germany Richard Grenell, who was recently tapped by President Donald Trump to be acting director of national intelligence, is apparently loyal to the president both inside and outside of his government roles.
The Washington Post reported this week that Grenell is one of only nine guests of the Trump International Hotel in Washington, D.C., to reach the “Gold” level of the Trump Organization’s “Trump Card” loyalty program.
Internal documents from 2018 obtained by The Post show that Grenell and one other Trump official — United Nations Ambassador Kelly Craft — have achieved the special VIP status.
Within his government role, Grenell has also climbed the loyalty ranks. As ambassador to Germany, he has made public comments frequently that echo Trump’s concerns, particularly regarding NATO and Germany’s shortfall in defense spending — both repeated targets of the president.
This loyalty to Trump was viewed by many current and former officials as reason for Grenell’s newest appointment, especially given his lack of experience in the realm of intelligence to receive such a high post.
“Nothing in Grenell’s background suggests that he has the skill set or the experience to be an effective leader of the intelligence community,” Nicholas J. Rasmussen, who was the director of the National Counterterrorism Center under Trump and President Barack Obama, told The Post.
“His chief attribute seems to be that President Trump views him as unfailingly loyal — hardly sufficient to make someone qualified to perform the duties of the DNI,” he added.