November 7th, 2008
01:35 PM ET
14 years ago

List emerges for Cabinet posts

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Current Defense Secretary Robert Gates is likely to stay at the post, a source tells CNN."](CNN) - Barack Obama is considering a mix of Washington insiders and high-profile business executives to head various cabinet positions, one source involved in the cabinet gathering process told CNN.

For Secretary of State, Massachusetts Sen. John Kerry is high on the list. Also on the list is Connecticut Sen. Chris Dodd, a former presidential candidate who endorsed Barack Obama early in the Democratic primary season. New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson and former U.N. Ambassador Richard Holbrooke are also interested in the job.

For Secretary of Defense, there are indications current Defense Secretary Robert Gates will stay at the post "for a certain period." Gates, the former CIA Director under the first President Bush, has been praised by members of both parties for his leadership at the Pentagon over the last two years. Rhode Island Sen. Jack Reed, a former United States Army Captain and a member of the Armed Services Committee, is acting as the go-between with Gates.

Arizona Gov. Janet Napolitano, who also served as that state's attorney general, is said to be a "very real possibility" for U.S. attorney general. Napolitano, who also endorsed Obama early in the primary process, was named earlier this week to the Obama transition team.  She's also served as a U.S. attorney from Arizona.

For Secretary of Commerce, former White House Chief of Staff Leon Panetta, Time Warner Chairman Dick Parsons, prominent Chicago Businesswoman Penny Pritzker, and University of California economist Laura Tyson are all under consideration.

One problem: the Obama administration wants a diverse cabinet, and that means everything is still up for grabs.

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
soundoff (396 Responses)
  1. Sammy

    Obama would be better off to move away from some of the usual suspects.

    November 7, 2008 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  2. Gerry In Toronto

    Certainly his choice for Chief of staff is a great one. Let's hope the others are the same.

    November 7, 2008 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  3. Alex

    The best place for Bill Clinton in an Obama administration would be when President of the World Bank comes up. BC would make an excellent WB President given his work with his foundation.

    November 7, 2008 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  4. Corbett

    Richardson would make a great Secretary of State. His credentials are great and he knows how to speak to Americans as well as the rest of the world. I really thought he had a great campaign, he just got broadsided by the Obama factor, Hillaries "inevitability" and John Edwards 4000 watt smile. If he would have tried it in 2004, he would have been a hit!

    November 7, 2008 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  5. Dan

    He should put Bill Clinton as secretary of state

    November 7, 2008 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  6. A Canuck

    If President Obama runs the country the same way he ran his brilliant campaign.......he will be an amazing leader and America will be redeemed in the eyes of the world.

    November 7, 2008 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  7. Tony Scott

    Isn't it funny how the Republicans, who just proved, a) they cannot run the government without ruining the country, and b) they cannot manage a campaign without ruining their party, are now putting themselves forward as management experts who know how Obama should manage his transition. Emanuel will be a god chief of staff, of the traditional kind. He will not be a co-president, like Rove was with Cheney (I do not include Bush as an actor in Presidency #44).

    November 7, 2008 01:25 pm at 1:25 pm |
  8. Independent voter

    Well, BO is a liar. He said America needed a change: no one from Washington. Someone needs to remind BO of this.

    His kids go to a private school. How does that relate to the average taxpayer?, the average black person?

    BO needs to be held accountable.

    November 7, 2008 01:25 pm at 1:25 pm |
  9. Joe in NJ

    If Obama picks Kerry as Sec of State I'll lose all respect for him. And please keep Gates.

    November 7, 2008 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  10. Michael Whittier

    Reg Weaver for Secretary of Education. Reg is the former president of the NEA .

    November 7, 2008 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  11. Laughing at No Hillary = No Obama

    I laugh at the Clinton supporters still whining.

    November 7, 2008 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  12. Truth Hurts

    WOw if this is even close to a list of anyone that is being considered, then Barack OBama will go down as the Biggest Hype-o-crit to ever walk into the White House.

    WOW there will probably be more African Americans, minorities, and women in the Bush Cabinet!!

    There is no good change here. This is American Politics As Usual, or worse. This is Chicago Style dirty politics.


    Truth Hurts.

    November 7, 2008 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  13. I Weiss

    Why John Kerry?

    I cannot understand this choice.

    November 7, 2008 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  14. Mobius

    Wow. All people who we've never heard of before, and definitely folks who aren't Washington Insiders! Change ROCKS! W00-h00!

    November 7, 2008 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  15. Matt in Boise

    The election is over, and being President means making decisions. We can be patriotic and give the man a chance to govern, or we can continue to "enjoy" the status quo.
    What we have in common as Americans is far greater than what can divide us. The economy, the environment and the geo-political landscape are all perilous, lets quit fighting for a while and work together to adress these pressing issues.

    November 7, 2008 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  16. Roger

    The reason Colin Powell isn't up as Secretary of State is because he already failed at that psoition once.

    November 7, 2008 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  17. sjp

    steady as she goes, an obama trademark. thoughtful, big picture decisions.

    November 7, 2008 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  18. irish

    Hey, Obama backer
    you left a good list of things that Obama never answered the questions to because they were pushed under the rug by the media and his supporters. So, you did see that his past was questionable and you voted for him anyway.

    November 7, 2008 01:29 pm at 1:29 pm |
  19. keep az red

    "Janet in AZ would appoint her replacement as gov… that does not mean a repub. would get the seat… LOL, geez"

    LOL, geez are you wrong. Her replacement would automatically be Sec. of State Jan Brewer. Dont post until you know.

    November 7, 2008 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  20. abc

    already posted elsewhere but again, no Senator Kerry please, keep him in the senate. i don't believe he is the SOS we desperately need. i do trust President Elect Obama to make the right pick, he hasn't even begin nominating and the bitter ones already dropping attacks and slinging muds...
    i don't believe is charitable offers even if he/she endorsed the candidate since whenever, then we all who supported him should be on the list, not.

    November 7, 2008 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  21. Joe in NJ

    "Just maybe we can talk to all these people and maybe we as Americans can be tourists in some of these countries that Bush tried to make us so fearful of!!! "

    Have fun on your vacation in sunny Iran!

    November 7, 2008 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  22. Matt

    I'd like a large egg drop soup and an order of peking ravioli please.

    November 7, 2008 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  23. irish

    Yeah, His potential cabinet picks are real bipartisan. There not!!!!!

    It's going to be a bumpy ride for the next 4 years. Hold onto your hats.

    November 7, 2008 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  24. Mark Ramsey MD Milwaukee WI

    I really think it would be a mistake to put sitting senators and reps in the cabinet. It would make their seat more vulnerable in the next election cycle. Choose somebody else!

    November 7, 2008 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  25. Matt

    @ Truth Hurts

    Nice try. You would complain bitterly if he appionted alot of black people, but the lists above have a lot of white people on them so you'r ecomplaining about that. Give it up. You just sound like a bitter moron.

    November 7, 2008 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
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