Trump’s staffing struggle: After three years, unfilled jobs across the administration

On average, it takes 115 days to confirm a presidential appointee for Trump, compared with 56.4 days under Reagan, according to new data from the nonpartisan Partnership for Public Service. In 2019, the process took even longer: an average of 136 days for the Senate to confirm appointees, particularly for sub-Cabinet positions.

The delays come from several factors including the extensive paperwork applicants must complete, as well as the increasingly common practice of the opposing party delaying nominations by placing holds on them, or filibustering them, according to the partnership’s research.

The latest data illuminates the extent to which the Trump administration has struggled to fill jobs as it heads into its fourth year on Monday. Of the 714 key positions requiring Senate confirmation, 515 of them have a confirmed nominee in place — with 170 positions having no nominee, according to the latest tracking from the partnership.