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Will ‘Stiff’ Treasury Pick Steve Mnuchin Make It Through Confirmation?

Steve Mnuchin, President-elect Donald Trump’s choice to lead the Treasury Department, might be headed for some trouble at his Thursday confirmation hearing.

According to gossip from the transition team, Mnuchin came off as “uneven and stiff” in prep sessions, leading handlers to bring in extra help ahead of the Senate appearance. Those unnamed sources, speaking to Mike Allen’s Axios newsletter, also worried over how Mnuchin would react to demonstrators, who have interrupted the confirmation hearings of other Trump nominees, including Attorney General pick Jeff Sessions.

Democrats are hoping to defeat at least one of the president-elect’s choices for the Cabinet, and Allen claims that Mnuchin is at the top of the list.

He’s already been attacked by Democratic senators, who have pointed to his controversial tenure as the owner of OneWest Bank, which came under fire for its aggressive home foreclosure tactics. Mnuchin has also irritated transition insiders, leaking news of his appointment before the announcement during a segment on CNBC.

Mnuchin, a mega-rich Wall Streeter, is close friends with the president-elect, serving as a confidant and finance chairman throughout the campaign. He’s not the only pick to attract negative attention, with questions swirling around Health and Human Services nominee Tom Price, Secretary of State pick Rex Tillerson and Labor appointee Andy Puzder.

Contact Daniel J. Solomon at solomon@forward.com or on Twitter @DanielJSolomon

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