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About those Republicans in the cabinet: Two slots down, one to go

Yesterday, there were three open slots, and the Republicans, naturally, wanted all three. Today, two of them went to Dems: Vilsack to Agriculture, Salazar to Interior. That leaves one:


Is the tension building toward a massive Rivalgasm?

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amberglow's picture
Submitted by amberglow on

Obama picks Tom Vilsack, former Iowa governor, as agriculture secretary

... Both Obama and Vilsack are advocates of ethanol and other biofuels as a means to reduce U.S. reliance on foreign oil. And Obama and Democrats in Congress are working on a major economic stimulus package in which they intend to promote the creation of thousands of new jobs tied to "green energy" industries, including the production of solar and wind energy.

One of the first major decisions Obama and Vilsack may have to make is whether to grant the ethanol industry's requests for billions in federal aid in the stimulus bill, which Obama has said he hopes to sign into law quickly, perhaps on his first day in office. ...

HeroesGetMade's picture
Submitted by HeroesGetMade on

Obama would select either Valerie Plame or Joe Wilson to head up the CIA. It would also bolster his anti-war cred since they told the truth about the sketchy intelligence used to lie the country into war. Hillary Clinton and those who supported her over Obama are his true rivals, and I'm not hearing about too many (any at all?) prominent Hillary supporters besides herself getting influential posts in the new administration. Valerie and Joe, though, are probably out of the running due to things like competence and good sense and well, this.

Dawn's picture
Submitted by Dawn on

But I doubt that one will go to a Republican.

I've heard news people using Vilsack as another example of a 'rival'. I think that formulation has officially jumped the shark.

caseyOR's picture
Submitted by caseyOR on

I've heard LaHood is the choice for Transportation. If true, I don't understand. LaHood is a Republican flunkie. He got the congressional seat for the IL-18 after his boss, Bob Michel, retired. Now he is retiring from Congress. He was a god-awful congressman. I grew up in the IL-18; my family is still there. They view Ray as somewhat less than useless as a Representative.

And isn't Obama supposed to be a big supporter of rail and mass transit? Why wouldn't he give this spot to someone with, you know, actual experience in transportation work? How about a strong policy advocate for expanding and improving public transit?

Lots of those infrastructure projects Obama talks about involve various aspects of our transportation network. Wouldn't this be a good time for a visionary at transportation to help structure those projects?

Also, as an aside, LaHood was handpicked by Newt to chair the impeachment proceedings against Bill Clinton. He was and is a smarmy guy.

amberglow's picture
Submitted by amberglow on

the GOP has more experience in that, so i guess Obama thought a Repub would be more efficient and "pragmatic" at it?


Supertrain Inc., here we come! and all other highways, roads, bridges, ports, subways, canals, levees, ...

amberglow's picture
Submitted by amberglow on

LaHood Pick for Transportation Has Stakeholders Buzzing --

... Obama has pledged to make massive investments in transportation through an economic recovery package and the creation of a National Infrastructure Bank that would dedicate funds to national projects.
Nod to Bipartisanship

But many stakeholders said Wednesday that LaHood’s selection, if made official, appears largely political, calculated to satisfy Obama’s pledge to have a bipartisan Cabinet. (Holdover Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates is currently the only Republican among Obama’s selections.) LaHood is also an Arab-American — a Roman Catholic of Lebanese descent.

LaHood, who represents large swaths of central and western Illinois, is a close friend of Rep. Rahm Emanuel , D-Ill., who will serve as Obama’s White House chief of staff.
Rep. Michael N. Castle , R-Del., one of a fast-dwindling group of GOP moderates in the House, hailed LaHood’s selection, calling him “a pragmatist who places politics on the back burner in order to get things done. Ray will be an asset to the incoming administration with his ability to work on the issues that matter,” Castle said.

LaHood may face some opposition from labor unions, particularly those involved in aviation issues. In 2007 LaHood voted against an FAA reauthorization bill that included language long sought by the National Air Traffic Controllers Association that would have helped resolve in the union’s favor a longstanding and bitter contract dispute with the FAA.

But other transportation insiders, while surprised, were hopeful that LaHood would bring the same bipartisan spirit to the administration as he has in Congress. ...

amberglow's picture
Submitted by amberglow on

Craig Crawford --

... Yikes, not only does Karl Rove approve of Barack Obama's national security team. So does Dick Cheney. What is going on here? As a candidate for the Democratic presidential nomination, Obama could not have been more scathing in his critiques of George W. Bush's foreign policy. But as president-elect, Obama appears to be installing a continuation of the incumbent's agenda. ...

Iphie's picture
Submitted by Iphie on

but certainly a strong statement.

Rev. Rick Warren of Saddleback Church has been asked to deliver the invocation at Barack Obama's inauguration.
Maybe Project Rescue will send an emissary to the inauguration, now that we're all friends.

amberglow's picture
Submitted by amberglow on

Politico - -Gay activists furious with Obama

... “Rick Warren gets plenty of attention through his books and media appearances. He doesn’t need or deserve this position of honor,” said the president of People for the American Way, Kathryn Kolbert, who described Warren as “someone who has in recent weeks actively promoted legalized discrimination and denigrated the lives and relationships of millions of Americans.”

Warren’s spokeswoman did not respond to a message seeking comment, but he has tried to blend personal tolerance with doctrinal approval of homosexuality.

“I have many gay friends, I’ve eaten dinner in gay homes. No church has probably done more for people with AIDS than Saddleback Church,” he said in a recent interview with BeliefNet.

In the same interview, he compared the “redefiniton of a marrige” to include gay marriage to legitimizing incest, child abuse, and polygamy.

Davidson's picture
Submitted by Davidson on

Talk about putting a coal in someone's Christmas stocking. Good Lord. There's no point in Obama saying homophobia is wrong when he still chooses to surround himself with homophobic bigots who exploit religion to push hate.

This reminds me of the Catholic Church claiming child rape was wrong back when the Boston scandals came out but then selected disgraced Cardinal Law to be prominently involved in the funeral of Pope John Paul II a few years later. Obviously, the message was not, "We think child rape is wrong and we take it seriously." The same here with Obama and homophobia.

Merry Christmas, all!!!!

amberglow's picture
Submitted by amberglow on

totally pro-life, as usual for them.

his "forum" was where Obama said women should consult their pastors before having abortions, and that when iife begins was "above his pay grade".

caseyOR's picture
Submitted by caseyOR on

Yet another iteration of the "some of my best friends" defense of bigotry. Seriously, this guy is the best Obama could do?

amberglow's picture
Submitted by amberglow on

You'd think a guy who wanted to be a president for all Americans, someone who wanted to be inclusive and eschew partisanship, would at least have the decency to choose someone who wasn't already a famous, political, controversial, pseudo-moderate right-wing creep to give the invocation at the inauguration, wouldn't you? ...

I'm sure Obama could have found a preacher who hangs out with the Jesus of love, hope, and charity if he'd really wanted to. ...

Submitted by hipparchia on

i'd have cheered if it had been jeremiah wright.

i'd have been even more cheered if he'd said there would be no invocation though.

Iphie's picture
Submitted by Iphie on

that Aravosis is none too pleased -- anyone care to venture over there? The last time I stopped by, the CDS was unbearable and I haven't been able to stomach going back. The fact that Aravosis didn't seem to understand that misogyny and homophobia are closely related made it even worse -- this development shouldn't be taking anyone by surprise -- well, anyone who wasn't willfully ignoring the clear examples of both during the campaign, that is.

amberglow's picture
Submitted by amberglow on

but it's still only being presented as a "gays are angry" thing, and nothing about choice or torture or anything else.

she's absolutely furious. good!

meanwhile, CNN calls Warren "America's Pastor" and loves him -- gives him all the airtime he wants -- always.

Damon's picture
Submitted by Damon on

That was a huge disappointment considering my state is finally starting to get very serious about mass transit. To have a Republican (no matter how moderate her or she may be) overlooking transportation is not a good thing. It's going to be "public-private" all. of. the. damned. time. No, he really can't be serious about transit to not just choose a Republican, but some GOP lackey because he's known for "reaching across the aisle."