November 21st, 2008
10:36 AM ET
6 years ago

Sources: Jones leading choice for national security advisor

 Jones is the leading candidate to be Obama's national security advisor.
Jones is the leading candidate to be Obama's national security advisor.

CHICAGO, Illinois (CNN) – Two sources close to the Obama transition team tell CNN retired Marine Gen. Jim Jones has emerged as President-elect's leading choice to become national security adviser in the White House.

The sources said Jones has been given the impression by the President-elect that the job is his if he wants it. But the officials said there are still private discussions underway and no final decision has been made.

The discussions are focused on precisely how much power Jones will have in the staff job since he is used to being in a command role. Among his many posts, Jones served for several years as the operational commander for NATO.

In the third and final presidential debate, Obama noted that he deeply values advice from Jones, who has four decades of military service.

One person close to the transition noted Jones is a bipartisan figure who has warm relationships with both current Defense Secretary Robert Gates, who may stay on the job for at least a brief period, as well as Sen. Hillary Clinton, who is now on track to be nominated as Secretary of State after Thanksgiving.
CNN first reported last week that Jones was getting serious consideration for either national security adviser or Energy Secretary.


Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
soundoff (183 Responses)
  1. BS not Maverick

    Get on board the train is leaving the station!!!

    November 21, 2008 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  2. SHELLI

    So many people are bashing President-Elect Obama and he hasn't even gotten into the Oval Office yet....... What in the Yell is going on. You-all have waisted 2 votes on Bush and look what he's done to the United States of America and Chaney, Rummy, Swartskoff, McCain and Palin. They've run the USA into the toilet and you-all are going on a ramp about a man that is not even the President of The United States of America yet. You don't know what Good is is going to do. I believe that he is going to bring us out of the Doo Doo that we are in and get out Economy back on track. Give him A CHANCE!

    November 21, 2008 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  3. james

    I like what I see from the "leaks" about Obama's appointments. Keep in mind though, that NONE of this is official yet, and whoever leaks could have their own motives. If these picks stand though, I am impressed with the mix of the new and old guard and everyone of these picks' experience and COMPETENCE. This will be a breath of fresh air from the Bush days!

    November 21, 2008 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  4. Sharon, IN

    Sounds good, Obama's doing a good job. Press on, we're with you.

    November 21, 2008 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  5. mitch

    bill richardson and wesley clark have just reported that the tire pressure is fine under the bus.

    November 21, 2008 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  6. JoinTheBand

    ck, If I recall correctly, we had 8 straight years of peace and prosperity under The Clintons, who left office with the sweet taste of a financial surplus in our mouths. If that is "nonsense" give me all you've got.

    ROF and L about the Bush years, ck.

    November 21, 2008 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  7. mitch

    ck- yes. somewhat.

    November 21, 2008 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  8. karen-phoenix

    Obama is doing a fantastic job!!! It has been noted by many news media that this is the fastest transition in modern history. Obama is CHANGE from the Bush administration and ALL his appointments show it–intellegence, intellegence and more intellegence!!! Thank you America for electing Obama and Biden!!! I finally sleep sooo much better at night!!! And this from a former 40 year long republican!

    November 21, 2008 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  9. RealityKing

    Not that we see Obama's cabinet 1/2 full of lobbists and 3/4 full of Clintonians it's pretty clear that his vetting processes had very low standards. Already a complete betrayal of the American people's vote for change.

    November 21, 2008 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  10. Laura, Boston

    I can't imagine why he would have been even thought of for Energy Secretary where his experience has been decades in the military. I would like to see Bill Richardson for Energy (since he held that position before).

    I love the idea as Hillary for SOS. Holder is going to be more of a problem than Hillary. He made some really questionable calls during his time as Deputy Att. Gen. (Marc Rich, Gonzalez, terrorists given pardon).

    November 21, 2008 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  11. Nikole

    @ ck-I have no reason to feel hoodwinked. Obama is doing exactly what I wanted him to do. He is putting successful and competent people around him that will do what is best for our country. That is a great change from our current President, and the change I sought in this election.

    November 21, 2008 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  12. thriveblogger

    Pres-Elect is trying to find those he feels will best serve his admin... so look at the people he is considering b4 you open your mouth! Jim Jones:
    - In 2007, Jones served as Chairman of the Congressional Independent Commission on the Security Forces of Iraq
    -the former Supreme Allied Commander, Europe
    -Commander of the United States European Command
    -served as the 32nd Commandant of the Marine Corps
    -currently the Chairman of the Atlantic Council of the United States.

    He is a qualified person. He is smart as hell. He is NOT some partisan hack. This is a good choice. We need a experienced and capable people in these positions.

    We don't need loud mouth idiots trying to blame the new administration before it even gets into office.

    Obama beat Hillary handily; contrary to the MSM, she was out of the running for months before she conceded. Obama beat the pants off of McCain. Get over it!

    I'm sick of people thinking the either of the other two LOSERS would have made a better choice. The elections are over, so get past your partisan, racist, ignorant high horse and take a few moments to LOOK at the people the Pres-Elect is considering before you open your mouth.

    November 21, 2008 10:39 am at 10:39 am |
  13. Pete

    The markets response to Obama being elected is astounding, down close to 20% since November 5.

    Change? We will all be asking for spare change before he's even in office.

    November 21, 2008 10:39 am at 10:39 am |
  14. Will from NYC

    the only folks who were never involved with the Clinton Administration are in their 20's or 70's... take your pick.

    November 21, 2008 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  15. Vic

    As supporter of Hillary then McCain, I am now a full-fledged supporter of President-Elect Barack Obama as our 44th president. Sure, he'll make mistakes, but with the mandate he received, he'll certainly receive support in his wisdom to correct them. I just hope now that the biting partisan criticisms will subside so that we all can go about picking up the left-over pieces from a lack-luster previous administration.

    November 21, 2008 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  16. brad

    sounds like Obama is picking strong individuals that will carry out his policy which by the way is the CHANGE. If you are expecting an overnight success story in getting out of this mess. You will sorely be disappointed. I don't think other than FDR has a new in coming president inherited such an economic disaster. I voted for Obama's message and policy. Who he brings in doesn't matter to me as long as he feel comfortable with them. Hoodwinked? Far from it.

    November 21, 2008 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  17. email4kh

    The EXACT same people who whined about Obama not being experienced are the ones whining about him surrounding himself with experienced advisors. I think you're just a bunch of whiners.

    November 21, 2008 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  18. Anna, ATL

    ck: this article doesnt say he was a Clintonista...he had a military career for 40 years and served with NATO.

    BTW: Daschle isn't a Clintonista either; they just served their terms together, and were at odds often, as I recall.

    It would be difficult I would think to find a post-pubescent political appointment that isnt in some way tied or has some relationship to the Clintons...they were kind of 'it' for the past 20 years or so.

    Oh well, its nice to see the Far Left and the Conservative base agreeing on something.

    November 21, 2008 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
  19. Kay

    ck – you are so right.! After all the man only has four decades of military service and served as the operational commander of NATO for several years. What could Obama be thinking?

    Maybe he's thinking the right man for the right job.

    Maybe you should think before you post!

    November 21, 2008 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  20. AEK

    Although I too voted for President-elect Obama hoping for radical change in the wake of the Bush/Chaney/Rove disaster and went through the same feelings of "more of the same" expressed on the recent blogs, I was heartened by an interview I saw last night with Malcolm Gladwell on Rachel Maddow's show on MSNBC. He had some very compelling arguments for selecting people to serve on the Obama team and I would encourage everyone to watch that segment or read his book Outliers. Unfortunately while many have a rather sour taste left from some of the Clinton-era problems, understanding that the pool of qualified people to work at that level of government is pretty small is critical. You have all the people that worked in the Bush White House for the last eight years, okay, no! And then you have the folks who worked in the Clinton White House with eight years more experience. How about we see what they can do with a captain at the helm like Obama.

    November 21, 2008 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  21. Mike C. from St. Louis

    Some ask if us who voted for Obama feel hoodwinked yet. 1st of all...Hell No!!! He hasn't taken office and people are scrutizing every move he makes because they want to see him fail. His choices have been great thus far and he's continuing to impress. The thing that needs to be done here is...If you voted for McCain you should sit back and enjoy the ride right now. His policies haven't been put into effect yet. Only the people are being positioned around him. We have to wait and see how a lot of this turns out before we can say anything.

    But for the record...We lived through 8 years of the worst President on record. for all of you who didn't want Obama to be elected...None of you should even have a speaking voice right now! It's because of people like you, who put bush into office, that we even need to dig our way out. McCain was not it!!

    November 21, 2008 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  22. FJ from Atlanta

    Hey CK,

    Change comes in the form of policies not peolple you idiot!

    November 21, 2008 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  23. Sally

    Poor CK... don't you think that you deserve good government? I'm very pleased with the skilful team Obama seems to be building.

    November 21, 2008 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  24. Will-South Dakota

    Good Choice Jones is pro-Troop support and pro-Healthcare for troops!

    November 21, 2008 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  25. S. Boatman Warrensburg Mo.

    This Would Be Another Stellar Choice By Obama! This Impressive Man Will Be The Greatest President Ever! Stand Back And Watch How Obama Does Things Republicans . . . Then You Too Can Learn How To Govern!

    November 21, 2008 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
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