[QUOTE][SIZE="5"][B]Obama considers stars for Cabinet[/B][/SIZE]
By MIKE ALLEN | 11/5/08 12:18 PM EST
[B]President-elect Barack Obama is strongly considering Robert F. Kennedy Jr. to head the Environmental Protection Agency, a Cabinet post, Democratic officials told Politico. [/B]
[B]Obama’s transition planners are weighing several other celebrity-level political stars for Cabinet posts, including retired Gen. Colin L. Powell for secretary of defense or education, the officials said. [/B]
[B]Kennedy's cousin, Caroline Kennedy, who helped Obama lead his vice presidential search, is being considered for U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, although some Obama officials doubt she would take the post. Obama is indebted to the Kennedy family for a hearty endorsement at a crucial point in the Democratic primaries. [/B]
The selection of Kennedy would be a shrewd early move for the new presidential team. Obama advisers said the nomination would please both Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) and Sen. Edward M. Kennedy (D-Mass.).
It also would raise the profile of the EPA, which would help endear Obama to liberals who may be disappointed on other issues important to the Democratic left because of budget restrictions.
The EPA enforces clean air and clear water laws. Kennedy, an environmental lawyer and son of the late senator and attorney general Robert F. Kennedy, has long championed a cleaner water supply for New York City.
As an officer and attorney for the environmental watch group Riverkeeper, Kennedy has taken on governments and companies for polluting the Hudson River and Long Island Sound.
Kennedy, a falconer and white-water rafter, also worked as an assistant district attorney in New York City.
Kennedy gained Washington experience by fighting anti-environmental legislation in Congress in 1995 and 1996, when Newt Gingrich took over as House speaker.
The officials were unsure when Obama will make the selection. His transition planners have focused first on top West Wing staff and his economic and national security teams, all of which are scheduled to be announced early in the 76-day transition period. President-elect Bill Clinton was widely criticized for moving too slowly to appoint key staff and Cabinet secretaries during his presidential transition.[/QUOTE]
Some good cabinet speculation in this Bloomberg piece:
[QUOTE]Summers, Emanuel Candidates for Obama Administration (Update1)
By Albert R. Hunt
Nov. 5 (Bloomberg) -- Barack Obama's top priority will be appointing a Treasury secretary and White House chief of staff. The leading candidates: two Clinton administration stalwarts, Lawrence Summers and Representative Rahm Emanuel.
It's unlikely the president-elect can assemble a Cabinet and staff within 10 days as some have advised, say people who have discussed this with him in recent days, all of whom asked for anonymity. Still, given the financial crisis and two wars, Obama, 47, is bound to move more quickly than either of his two predecessors in making key personnel decisions.
[B]Summers, 53, is favored to return to the Treasury post that he held under President Bill Clinton because Obama values his experience and familiarity with markets and global leaders, a crucial asset during the markets crisis.[/B]
Still, people close to the president-elect stress no final decision has been reached and that Timothy Geithner, president of the New York Federal Reserve, is also a strong contender. Geithner would also be welcome by many in the financial community; at age 47, he would be a fresh face in an administration that ran on a mantra of change.
Obama's first decision may be who heads his White House operation. ``A president should pick a White House chief of staff first,'' says Vernon Jordan, the lawyer and investment banker who ran the transition for Bill Clinton in 1992. ``The chief of staff needs to be involved in the selection of other people in the government; that's the quarterback.''
Obama has spoken with Emanuel, the No. 4 ranking Democrat in the House of Representatives and former Clinton White House aide, in recent weeks about the post; if asked, Emanuel is expected to accept.
ABC News, citing an unnamed source, said today that Obama offered the job to Emanuel and Emanuel has not yet responded.
Emanuel, 48, would bring an exceptional understanding of the nexus between politics and policy and of the way Washington works, critical requisites for that job.
His detractors say his tough, take-no-prisoners approach is antithetical to the tone and style of the Obama presidential campaign.
Still, if, as many expect, top campaign strategist David Axelrod and businesswoman and Obama confidant Valerie Jarrett become counselors to the president, they would form a powerful Chicago troika running the White House.
[B]On the national security front, the first decision may be whether to ask Defense Secretary Robert Gates to remain for an interim period, a move favored by a number of influential congressional Democrats and the military. As the new president focuses on the financial crisis, they argue, this would offer continuity.[/B]
``He's done an extraordinary job,'' Senator Jack Reed, a Rhode Island Democrat, said of Gates. ``I would hope that in some capacity he could continue to serve.''
[B]If Gates isn't asked to stay, a leading candidate for Defense would be retiring Republican Senator Chuck Hagel of Nebraska.[/B] Hagel accompanied Obama on his trip to Afghanistan and Iraq in July, and the two have become close. The Illinois senator has said he wants a bipartisan Cabinet.
Initially, the Obama camp had hoped to have the Cabinet and White House staff picked by Nov. 15. Several events, including a likely trip to Hawaii for the funeral of the president-elect's grandmother, and a sense that it's important to look at the overall cohesiveness of a new administration, make this unlikely to occur until closer to Thanksgiving.
Obama needs to strike a balance, assuring that sufficient numbers of women and minorities get top jobs, experienced and fresh faces, longtime supporters and some converts, and at least a Republican or two.
`Old and New'
``It has to be the old and new, the tried and true and geographically representative,'' says Jordan. ``And it has to be educationally balanced -- they can't all come from Harvard or Ivy League schools.''
A[B]lthough there is strong sense that Summers and Geithner are the odds-on favorites for Treasury secretary, there is an outside chance Obama would turn to an even more experienced graybeard such as former Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker or former Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin.[/B]
More likely, however, is that Rubin -- who talks frequently with Obama -- will be given a senior portfolio to advise on the financial crisis, and Volcker may be used as a troubleshooter on the same issues, dealing with the Europeans and others. Top Obama advisers say none of this has been decided.
Another important post is the National Economic Council, which coordinates policy-making at the White House. Two leading candidates are Peter Orszag, the current director of the Congressional Budget Office, and Jack Lew, who headed the Office of Management and Budget under Clinton.
T[B]here is little consensus yet on who will direct the Office of Management and Budget. One possibility is John Podesta, Clinton's one-time chief of staff, [/B]though Podesta has told friends he doesn't want another White House job.
[B]Austan Goolsbee, an economic adviser to the campaign and a University of Chicago economist, is widely considered to be the leading candidate to head the president's Council of Economic Advisers.[/B]
Two other economic advisers, Gene Sperling, another veteran of the Clinton white House, and Jason Furman, are also in line for jobs.
Associates say Obama surely will have a woman, and someone from the business community, at the higher echelons of any economic team, perhaps a top Treasury post or the trade ambassador.
Some of the same considerations are at play in picking a national security team. [B]Massachusetts Senator John Kerry is lobbying for secretary of State, although Obama has been cautioned that would be received negatively by many Republicans.[/B]
F[B]ormer Senator Sam Nunn of Georgia, who has attracted Obama's attention as a leader of anti-nuclear proliferation efforts, is another possibility.
Vice President-elect Joe Biden, currently chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, is expected to have a major voice on national security. That's why [B]a Biden ally, former Clinton United Nations Ambassador Richard Holbrooke, is a dark- horse candidate for secretary of State. Holbrooke supported Hillary Clinton during the primaries.[/B]
Obama, associates say, will also use several prominent retired generals such as ex-NATO commander and former Marine Corps Commandant James Jones for special assignments. This could include one of the top intelligence jobs. California Congresswoman Jane Harman, former ranking Democrat of the House Intelligence Committee, would also be a candidate.
[B]One leading candidate for a Cabinet post is Arizona Governor Janet Napolitano, an early Obama supporter. Napolitano, a former state attorney general, is being considered for U.S. attorney general.[/B]
A[B]nother governor and also an early Obama supporter, Kathleen Sebelius of Kansas, is a favorite of the president-elect and probably could have her choice of several top Cabinet posts.[/B] Other positions surely will be filled by some Hispanics and blacks as well as faces not as familiar to Washington.
[B]Time Magazine's Mark Halperin reported last night that Obama is considering asking former Secretary of State Colin Powell, a Republican, to be education secretary. Powell, who endorsed Obama last month, has a longtime interest in the subject.[/B]
Should Emanuel be tapped quickly to be chief of staff, the rest of the White House advisers would fall in line soon. If the Illinois congressman isn't chosen, a strong alternative is former Senate Democratic Leader Tom Daschle of South Dakota, Obama associates say.[/QUOTE]
[QUOTE=Tyler Durden;2844178]I believe Chris Mathews said late last night that an Obama aide told him Obama wants a bipartisan and diverse cabinet with no retreads, meaning.. no one from Clintons cabinet.[/QUOTE]
I took that to mean nobody in the same role they filled earlier. Trust me, he will have Clinton people at treasury.
Word from representatives in the Obama transition team in certain circles to me is that he may be considering choosing between keeping SecDef Gates for an interim period and/ or choosing between Republicans Hagel or Senator John Warner. Warner was the first Senator to reach out to Obama by encouraging him to participate in legislative military and security sessions and Obama has repeatedly stated his gratitude for that. There is also rumor also is that he may be reaching out to McCain about some policy input on certain security issues for the Administration.
Kerry has had ambitions for SecState for a long time. But him and Biden have personality conflicts- both want to have influence in foreign policy- so I think Kerry is out.
Holbrooke is considered sort of Zbigniew Brzezinski's designated successor in the realist foreign policy faction of the democrats. He was Clinton's National Security Advisor. But he was a partisan Clinton supporter. Brzezinski will have considerable influence in Obama's decision for SecState, SecDef and NSA as it was he who gave Obama legitimacy in foreign policy circles by declaring his support for him and advising him almost two years ago. Him and Kissinger are my two academic and professional inspirations whom I have had the pleasure to meet several times. It is good to see Brzezinski back in the ring after he was ostracized by the Clinton Administration and saddled with the legacy of the Carter Administration.
Summers for SecTreas may generate some controversy; he was fired as President of Harvard over accusations of sexism.
[I]"The Exterminators worship the god Zardoz, a huge, flying, hollow stone head. Zardoz teaches:
The gun is good. The penis is evil. The penis shoots seeds, and makes new life to poison the Earth with a plague of men, as once it was, but the gun shoots death, and purifies the Earth of the filth of brutals. Go forth . . . and kill!"[/I]