Harold Ford Jr. eyed for Trump cabinet appointment

Former Tennessee Democratic Congressman Harold Ford Jr. is being considered for appointment as U.S. Secretary of Transportation – or perhaps another cabinet position — by President-elect Donald Trump, according to reports from Politico and the New York Times. This comes, of course, with Trump also apparently still considering a cabinet appointment for Republican U.S. Sen. Bob Corker, who defeated Ford to first win his Senate seat in 2006.

From Politico:

The telegenic Ford — who served five terms in Congress representing Tennessee and is the son of a long-serving Democratic congressman from Memphis — has worked as a managing director at Morgan Stanley since 2011, and is a regular news analyst on MSNBC.

Ford endorsed Hillary Clinton in the 2016 race, and he and his wife, Emily, contributed to Clinton’s campaign. But Ford is also close with Trump’s children, Don Jr., Ivanka, and son-in-law Jared Kushner, an associate said.

Now the moderate Democrat is poised to potentially join the incoming Republican administration. Two sources confirmed to POLITICO that Ford has yet to meet with the president-elect, but that there have been some preliminary feelers put out about potential Cabinet-level posts, including transportation secretary, via “emissaries.” And Ford did not rule it out.

“He’s happy doing what he’s doing,” a source close to Ford told POLITICO. “If the President-elect called, then of course, he would listen carefully.”

(Ford himself told Politico he was on vacation with family and to call him at the office on Monday.)

And from the brief Times itemWhy Mr. Ford? He is a frequent guest on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” and the co-host Joe Scarborough has the president-elect’s ear.

The Tennessean has a broader article, including comments from some Tennessee politicians. Here’s an excerpt:

Reached Tuesday afternoon, Harold Ford Sr. — who held the same (9th District) Congressional seat before his son won election to it — said he’d heard nothing about such an appointment.

“You mean the Trump Administration? I better get off the phone. I haven’t heard anything like that at all,” he said. “I’m traveling right now, getting ready to get on an airplane for the holiday.”

Nashville attorney Charles Robert Bone, a friend of Ford and a prominent Democratic fundraiser, said he hadn’t spoken to the former congressman about a potential Cabinet appointment but believes he would be a good choice.

“I remain a big Harold Ford fan,” Bone said. “He’s a gifted communicator and a skilled politician. President-elect Trump would be lucky to have him. I am confident that he would serve our country and president well, regardless of political party.”

…Steve Cohen, the current holder of Ford’s former Congressional seat, said Ford “would be a perfect fit for Trump.”

“I think that would be good for Memphis and Harold Jr., too,” Cohen added. “It would do nothing but help get road dollars for Memphis as a distribution city. It’s just a winner for Memphis, for FedEx, for the total transportation system. And I think (he) wants to get back into government, so that’s good for him.”

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