The Latest Class of White House Interns Is Almost All White. Why Are We Not Surprised?

Yesterday, the White House released an official photo of Donald Trump posing with the spring 2018 class of White House interns. And, despite the graininess of the official photo, there’s one thing that’s pretty clear: it’s very hard to find a person of color in the lineup. There are a few, of course — but the vast majority of interns are white. But considering Trump’s policies, we shouldn’t be particularly surprised.

white house interns trump
Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead

Of course, this isn’t Trump’s first batch of White House interns. The image from last year’s group is slightly better in terms of race, but you might be able to detect a pattern.

white house interns last year
Last year’s White House Interns

To be fair, it is somewhat of a Republican issue. We found a photo of the 2003 White House interns posing with then-President George W. Bush. It’s a little bit better in terms of number of people of color, but not much.

white house interns george w. bush
Summer 2003 White House interns

And, for contrast, here’s a photo of one of President Barack Obama’s intern classes:

obama white house interns
The 2015 White House intern class posing with then-President Obama

While, admittedly, the majority of Obama’s interns are white, there are many people of color included as well.

Of course, given Trump’s policies, we shouldn’t be surprised. Trump has been dogged by accusations of racism his entire life — from his company refusing to rent to black people in the 1970s to surrounding himself with white supremacists in his political and personal life. And, of course, there’s the border wall, the Muslim ban, not immediately disavowing the KKK… need we go on?

We fully admit — there may be a chicken-and-egg situation going on here. We don’t know how many people of color applied to be White House interns. Given Trump’s low number of votes from communities of color — especially from black people — we can’t imagine many people of color are clamoring for a position in the Trump White House.

 

What do you think of the White House interns photo? Let us know in the comments!