President-elect Donald Trump continued to build his administration Friday with two more appointments — one with a long family history with Trump and Atlantic City.
Donald McGahn, a former member of the Federal Election Commission and a nephew of legendary Atlantic City lawyer Patrick “Paddy” McGahn, was tapped for White House counsel.
The president-elect praised McGahn as a person with “a brilliant legal mind, excellent character and a deep understanding of constitutional law.”
McGahn, who also was the campaign attorney for the president-elect, follows in his uncle’s footsteps in having a close working relationship with Trump.
Paddy McGahn was hired by Trump in the 1980s shortly after the real estate mogul made it known that he was interested in opening a casino in Atlantic City.
Before he was a lawyer, Paddy McGahn fought in the Korean War and was awarded three Purple Heart medals.
After the war, he became one of the area’s best-known lawyers. He helped Trump with several legal issues surrounding the casinos, including an employee parking lot at Trump Castle. He also famously led a legal fight against a hot dog vendor who set up his cart outside Trump Taj Mahal.
Trump named a cocktail lounge at the Taj after the elder McGahn — Paddy’s Saloon.
Donald McGahn grew up in Atlantic City before attending the University of Notre Dame and getting a law degree at Widener University in the early 1990s.
Part of his responsibilities as White House counsel will be to try and sort through any conflicts of interest between President Donald Trump and businessman Donald Trump.
Gathered with family at his Mar-a-Lago estate in Palm Beach, Florida, for the holiday weekend, Trump made another senior-level staff appointment and scheduled meetings with several more prospective administration officials.
He tapped Fox News analyst Kathleen Troia “KT” McFarland to serve as deputy national security adviser. In a statement, Trump cited McFarland’s “tremendous experience and innate talent.”
Having faced criticism about the inexperience of his initial picks, Trump finds in McFarland someone who previously worked under three presidents, although none since Ronald Reagan. McGhan is a veteran Republican election lawyer.
Neither McFarland nor McGahn will require Senate confirmation.
Trump transition spokesman Sean Spicer told the Associated Press that the president-elect scheduled Monday meetings with eight more prospective administration hires, a group that includes several business leaders, Pennsylvania Rep. Lou Barletta, and David Clarke, the Wisconsin sheriff who is an aggressive opponent of the Black Lives Matter movement.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.