November 9th, 2008
12:45 PM ET
10 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that he wanted all the Bush executive orders reviewed and decide which ones should be kept and which ones should be repealed and which ones should be amended, and that process is going on.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. UncleSam'sNephew

    It's time to clean house! The Bush Administration spent the last eight years filling every federal department with unqualified extreme-right loyalists. Most of them would rather have seen the agencies they worked for dismantled rather than made leaner and smarter to better serve the public good (and public pocketbook).

    I look forward to looking at the Justice Department, EPA, Dept. of Education, etc., and knowing that they are staffed with intelligent men and women committed to the idea of national service and not just serving the narrow agenda of an administration who thought they were above the law.

    For this to happen, a lot of former cronies are going to be getting their two weeks notice, and I hope that the new president and his team replace them with smart people who represent a range of political ideas.

    November 9, 2008 01:56 pm at 1:56 pm |





    November 9, 2008 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  3. Allen

    I couldn't say it any better than 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.


    November 9, 2008 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  4. Dixie AZ

    Hooray! Go Mr. President Elect. Strip down the bloated and convoluted agencies that have been sapping taxpayer's dollars for decades. You'll need a microscope for military spending. No more contracts for $900 toilet seats. Our military deserve their rightful health benefits and education benefits. Don't forget FEMA - it's a joke.

    November 9, 2008 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  5. FreeNLovIt

    Whatever you do, just leave stem cells ban ALONE!! I just read somewhere that the Japanese used wisdom tooth to create stem cells and it was as good as usting babies.. Let the BABIES rest in PEACE!!!

    November 9, 2008 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  6. HouseDiva

    I want to see some charges brought up on the Bush adm.

    america has to stand up to war criminals and make them know that the way they did america and it;s reputation around the world will no longer be accepted.

    NO MORE rewarding tyrants!!!!

    November 9, 2008 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  7. FreeNLovIt

    Goodness, the list just keeps going........

    November 9, 2008 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  8. Akoth

    Yes we will.

    November 9, 2008 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  9. FreeNLovIt

    Dear Obama,

    Choose fromer NATO Commander Clarke as the Defense Secretary. He's a great man! He was man enough to bust out his party and join the Demo for a new cause, liberating America to a GREAT Nation.

    In times like this, you need the few, the proud, the braves and GUTSY men and women.

    November 9, 2008 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  10. Finally!

    Folks need to realize that Obama's left leaning views will be tempered somewhat by the machine, but his strong leadership will benefit all.

    The majority elected him because they believed he is a leader, and we're all going to see that they were right..

    Please forget all the crap from the McCain campaign. It was all presented in place of useful ideas.

    Welcome to an intelligent world. 'bout time.

    November 9, 2008 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  11. Kim

    Team USA has a new coach! I LOVE IT!!!!

    November 9, 2008 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  12. BK

    I look forward to seeing many Bush executive orders contradicted or removed.

    November 9, 2008 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  13. FreeNLovIt

    Dear Obama,

    Last but not least, can you hire 3 Treasury Secretary so they can bounce off ideas of each other? Our economy is in a coma and we really NEED three WISEMEN/WOMEN. I cant imagine only one wisemen handling the economy. The more the merrier so they can challenge one another.

    November 9, 2008 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  14. geraldine

    Now that he's getting under the covers on many issues with which he had little familiarity or interest (security briefings just the other day, for example), I suspect he will be governing a lot closer to the present administration than advertised. But, at least he'll do so with eloquence and style, which is the important thing.

    November 9, 2008 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  15. Lewis Moore

    Just want this country needs.

    1. Of course Economic Policy.

    2 -3. Education & Health Care Policies

    3. The war on Drugs, Current Policy has proven to be counter productive only perpetuating the problem. Prohibition doesn't work, Alcohol anyone?!? Regulate every drug, its a lot safer and it removes the Thug element on the Blackmarket. Capone lost big when alcohol was made legal, and the same will happen to gangs across this country if we regulate the drug supply. Kids are safer with regulation, if you don't believe me wrap your mind around this senario. A twelve year old walk into a liqour store and attempts to purchase some alcohol. He gets turned away because he doesn't have an ID. Now step back into the past and the same kid goes to a bootlegger asks for some alcohol and all he needs is money, no ID required.

    Now take the same senario, and replace the alcohol with your illicit drug of choice. Now you should get why it would be easier to end the drug war completely and regulate. Addicts will always be addicts why not make help available if they want it, and make the drugs available as well in a regulated manner. Safer for addicts, safer for the community as well.

    And lastly think about all the money that is being wasted on a endless war that can't be won, unless you kill off all of the addicts. Face it the US loves our drugs, so legalize and regulate. Make money off of the taxes, use that money for treatment and education programs.

    Please post this, I really would like to help people understand this simple concept

    First two orders of business.

    November 9, 2008 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  16. Steve in Las Vegas,NV

    In the forest of agencies there MUST be a thinning, not clearcutting. Also some should be consolidated with others that do the same work. We must get most bang for the buck from these changes.

    Obama does what is best, he surrounds himself the best minds he can find, The way forward will take time but with the very best advice he can get we will get through all this, but the Republicans and Democrats MUST work together as the servants of the American people

    YES WE CAN......YES ME MUST!!!

    November 9, 2008 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  17. HouseDiva

    This IS the part in Obama's speech where he asks for the American people for help and get involved.

    write, call, or email your local senators and representatives to petition to hold the republican tyrants responsible for ruining our country.

    Dennis Kusinich was stalled from impeaching bush due to republican resistance....NO MORE!!!

    November 9, 2008 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  18. KLEE

    Positive feeling – yep – still there!! Thanks everyone who are supportive and give intelligent opinions in this blog – very uplifting. Out of the caves and into the sunshine!

    November 9, 2008 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  19. rich

    I am beginning to see the sun rising over America again, and it's a beautiful sight not to mention feel.

    November 9, 2008 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  20. Tess

    How refreshing to have an intelligent person with integrity in the white house again. One who truly understands the Constitution. I am so glad that I along with millions, voted him in. You go President-Elect Obama!!! We the people have your back!

    November 9, 2008 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  21. Deadhead Dylan

    what are the vegas odds Barack Obama Time's Person of the Year? That's my prediction. Then again I predicted a Clinton/Obama victory and then held out hope for a Obama/Clinton victory, so I'm 0 for 2 so far...

    I would hate to jinx it.

    November 9, 2008 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  22. sean

    I hope they do a very close review of the NSA's domestic spying practices

    November 9, 2008 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  23. Sandra

    Canada is cheering our US neighbours in their wise selection for President. Yes the world can!

    November 9, 2008 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  24. Andrew

    Finally an intellect in the white house. What a task though to undo so much damage that the self serving GW did. He makes you proud to be an American.

    November 9, 2008 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  25. Uncle Sam

    John McCain for a cabinet post!

    November 9, 2008 02:28 pm at 2:28 pm |
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