November 9th, 2008
12:45 PM ET
5 years ago

Obama team reviewing 'virtually every agency,' aide says

President-elect Barack Obama has said he intends to move with 'deliberate haste' in making appointments.
President-elect Barack Obama has said he intends to move with 'deliberate haste' in making appointments.

(CNN) - The head of President-elect Barack Obama's transition team said Sunday that the incoming administration is conducting an extensive review of President Bush's executive orders.

Asked about reports that the transition team already has identified a number of areas where Obama could issue executive orders as soon as he takes office, John Podesta said he would not "preview decisions that [Obama] has yet to make."

"I would say that as a candidate, Sen. Obama said that he wanted all the Bush executive orders reviewed and decide which ones should be kept and which ones should be repealed and which ones should be amended, and that process is going on. It's been undertaken," Podesta said Sunday on "Fox News."

Podesta pointed out that there is a lot the president can do without waiting for Congress, and voters can expect to see Obama do so to try and restore "a sense that the country is working on behalf of the common good."

"I think that we're looking at - again, in virtually every agency to see where we can move forward, whether that's on energy transformation, on improving health care, on stem cell research," he said.

Podesta, chief of staff under President Clinton, is president and CEO of the Center for American Progress, a left-leaning think tank that he founded.

Podesta said Sunday that preparations for Obama's transition have been in the works since early August.

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Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
soundoff (91 Responses)
  1. KJL

    Makes you glad Obama is an attorney.

    November 9, 2008 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  2. PW Va

    Now this is what I call a very savvy gesture coming from our President-elect. So much of Bush's wide-sweeping executive orders were put into effect without rhyme nor reason, no real thought involved at all...just the grandiose knowledge that he could do as he da mned well pleased!!!

    November 9, 2008 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  3. Roy - Chcago

    A President 'working for the common' good???....Imagine!!! Stem cell research??...Imagine! An accessible President...IMAGINE!!!

    Let's see how many executive orders Bush tries to slip in before January 20th....he already is seeking to open up roadless areas in Utah that are federally protected, seeking to weaken the EPA, and will probably seek to antagonize every nation we are at odds with before January, pushing missle defenses we don't need......such is his legacy! Well, soon he will be back at his armoured Texas compound....for good!!

    November 9, 2008 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  4. observer

    He is on the track, doing something important.

    Give him time to organize his cabinet and initial preparation work. Good preparations lead to success. No point rushing through to take actions.

    Hope Republicans understand the need to work as a team to help this new president to be for the benefit of the country.

    If you have doubts or queries, you can feed back to President Elect Obama and he will be more than willing to listen to you. Communicate in proper and respectful manner and things can be clarified. By doing this, Republicans can gain back the respects from non-Republicans.

    November 9, 2008 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  5. Texas Teacher

    And this is why we voted for him..... finally a man of real intellect and intelligence running this country.

    President of the Harvard Law Review.... now that should tell you that Barack Obama understands the law! He will deliver the change that we need. It will not matter one wit what the far right says, he is bringing change! And we, the people, are ready to support him just as we did in the campaign and election!

    November 9, 2008 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  6. Sean Chong

    That's his promise, to go through every budget line by line and eliminate those that are not needed. Bush once said that he "will" rule America like a CEO for a company. That's a wrong philosophy, and I'm glad a real prez is now in the white house, and will actually do the work himself.

    November 9, 2008 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  7. Julian, Arkansas

    I hope they take a long look at the Department of Homeland Security and the awful relationship they have with contractors. Look at contractors period in the government.

    Also look at the Corp of Engineers and the fact that they make their money from other agencies which means their focus is the money and not the service. It's a horrible way for govt. agencies to do business when other govt. agencies are waiting like vultures to take all of their funds.

    November 9, 2008 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  8. S. Boatman Warrensburg, Mo.

    It Seems Like Obama Is Doing A Good Job Already And He Is Not Even President Yet! I Think We Have Made A Good Choice Electing Obama!

    November 9, 2008 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  9. Hieronymus Murphy

    I can't wait to see who's among the motley crew who receive last-minute executive pardons.

    November 9, 2008 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  10. Michael watching from Canada

    America, isn't it nice to have an intelligent President-elect who is exploring how to use his executive powers in the best way possible to help the people.

    November 9, 2008 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  11. A Really Conservative Realist

    I hope he takes a long hard look at the Deapartment of Education, does away with it, and returns power to the States.

    November 9, 2008 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  12. Bobby, MN

    America hit it out of the ballpark. We picked the best man for the job and now he will pick the best people for his cabinet. We've waited 8 long years, we can wait a little while longer.

    YES HE WILL.

    November 9, 2008 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  13. Dave

    Just think, a government not intimated by science and willing to provide information on birth control worldwide. I think now we have a little glimpse of what it was like at the beginning of the Renaissance as Europe came out of the Dark Ages.

    November 9, 2008 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  14. A Really Conservative Realist

    "a sense that the country is working on behalf of the common good."

    I hope that doesn't mean what I think it means.

    November 9, 2008 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  15. Sue in MI

    Can he start with the one where Bush protects himself from prosecution for this war? And then the one banning dissent for the war? And the one that wants to prevent people from gathering peacefully in Washington? This could keep him busy for a while!! Glad he's smart enough and energetic enough for this. Can you imagine McCain even looking at Bush's executive orders, let alone dismissing any of them? We chose the right guy!

    November 9, 2008 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  16. MikeH

    There is so much Republican poison that needs to be drained from America's wounds. This recovery will take years.

    To all you Republican Hate-Mongers out there, either choose to be the loyal opposition and help America, or go die. We need different points of view, we can tolerate opposing points of view that are genuine in their intent to come up with a solution, but we cannot tolerate hate, racisim, divisiveness and sabotage. Those that choose to do this really hate America and should be shunned, cut off from commercial support, and ostracized by democratic society (are you listening 'Truth Hurts').

    November 9, 2008 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  17. Hope

    We need Carl Rove behind bars on January 21st, a citizens arrest for ignoring Subpoenas from congress.

    November 9, 2008 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  18. Stu-Florida

    Finally... finally, I made a great choice in my Presidential pick!!

    There's a new coach for TEAM USA... see you ALL in the Gym.

    Let's ALL get this going...

    November 9, 2008 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  19. Frann Altman in CA

    The enormity of this transition is so deeply needed. So many key areas need renovation and reconstruction with seamless integration. How to keep the country moving while retooling at the same time. The work is staggering to imagine and I am so glad my President is here. Intelligence, integrity and inspiration. Yes we can. Yes we will. Yes we must.

    November 9, 2008 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  20. Johnny

    Repeal the Parriot Act! and shuitter Guantanamo forever! God, I can only dream.
    Stop using our military as a global police force and realize that terrorism is a law enforcement issue, not a military issue. No matter how large and powerful your army is, you will never defeat an ideal with bombs and bullets. You can never have a military strong enough to stop a group of 20 people bent on causing destruction. Deal with the causes by understanding and action, not the symptoms with a gun.
    Understand and accept that our constitution stands heads and shoulders above any agency, any government and any politician.
    I believe that our new President already understands many of the above points, this is why I voted Dem. for the first time in my life.

    -Johnny
    SC/USA

    November 9, 2008 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  21. Dawn

    President-elect Obama is doing the right thing, slow and steady, he wants the right people for the right postion, if it is a Republican so be it.
    To Roy in Chicago,we all have to worry about Bush, since he made a comment on Global Warming, that it is happening...He is also digging for Uranium near the Colorado River. It was mentions on another news channel. Yes by the 20th of Jan, Bush could do a lot of damaging....

    Peace is what we need...

    November 9, 2008 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  22. FINALLY!

    This is absolutely the best thing that Obama can do to start with. On day one, he can reverse ALL of Bush's executive orders that have harmed our rights, prevented scientific advancements, and destroy the environment in the name of oil.

    We are already on our way to returning the USA back the the greatest county in the world, despite the efforts of the Bush administration to destroy everything for their own benefit.

    November 9, 2008 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  23. Joe - Chicago, IL

    I'm hoping very few of Pres. Bush's directeves are kept. The more we can undo from his disasterous presidency the better.

    November 9, 2008 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  24. Joan

    I see that "HATERS" aren't blogging on this issue....why..cause it's nothing negative to say....Obama is handling his business!!!

    November 9, 2008 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  25. FreeNLovIt

    Sorry the poison is here to stay. 9/11 has changed everything. WE have been ushered into the age of the AntiChrist. Because of terrorism, I dont think our world is EVER the same again. They'll strike again. IT's sad. Thank God for the Constitution but the DEMONS of extremism is too DARK>.....

    November 9, 2008 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
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