Of all the cabinet picks that Joe Biden has announced over the past few weeks, his selection of Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo for the Commerce Department has to be one of the strangest. We’ve covered our fair share of stories about Raimondo here in the past and few of them paint her in a very flattering light. Whether you’re talking about her history of handling economic matters in her own state (which would certainly seem relevant for a job at Commerce), her authoritarian impulses that surfaced during the pandemic, or her dubious dealings leading to investigations over possible corruption, the Governor hasn’t exactly covered herself in glory during her five years as the Ocean State’s chief executive. And, as the Free Beacon pointed out this week, she’s traditionally been among the least popular governors in the nation, at least until the pandemic hit.

President-elect Joe Biden tapped Rhode Island governor Gina Raimondo (D.) for commerce secretary Thursday, seemingly unconcerned by her low approval ratings and the administrative scandals that transpired during her time in office.

Raimondo, the third least-popular governor in the United States prior to the pandemic, is slated to take the helm of the Commerce Department later this month. In an announcement Thursday, Biden lauded Raimondo for being the first woman to hold the office of Rhode Island governor and boasted of her work to lower the state’s unemployment rate.

Costly missteps have tainted Raimondo’s tenure as governor.

I understand that Joe Biden has been under tremendous pressure to fill his cabinet with as many women and minorities as possible. A failure to do so would have seen the socialist mobs demanding his scalp even sooner than they’re still likely to do in an effort to get Kamala Harris into the Oval Office by the back door. But surely there were better choices out there than Raimondo, weren’t there?

As the linked report reminds us, Gina Raimondo oversaw a disastrous overhaul of her state’s welfare-distribution program that wound up leaving thousands of people cut off from Medicare and supplemental food assistance programs for months. Rhode Island’s child-services department was similarly lambasted for running failures to prevent children from low-income and minority families from being abused or simply lost in the system. Several children actually wound up dying while in state custody.

When the pandemic struck, Raimondo was among the first governors to fully embrace the concept of autocratic rule dictated by a single person. She attempted (unsuccessfully) to close the borders with New York and hunt down anyone daring to enter her state with Empire State license plates. After locking down her own citizens with an iron fist, Raimondo displayed the same hypocrisy we’ve seen with so many of these autocrats, being caught on camera at a plush wine bar for a private party. Other examples abound.

Raimondo really found herself making bad headlines when she decided to award a no-bid, 20-year contract to handle the state’s lottery system to a company that had previously performed questionably in the task and was linked to someone from her own inner circle. When reporters sent FOIA requests to obtain all the details of the contract negotiations, she simply ignored them. She’s not exactly a poster-child of transparency. And she has absolutely no background in negotiating trade deals, a responsibility that will fall on her plate if she’s confirmed.

We frequently like to joke about Andrew Cuomo being the Worst Governor in America here. But Gina Raimondo has certainly been in contention for the title throughout her entire time in the Governor’s mansion. Is this really the best Joe Biden could do? Her Senate confirmation should not be a simple rubber stamp process. I wonder if she’s ever done anything to tick off Joe Manchin?