December 1st, 2008
10:57 AM ET
14 years ago

Obama announces national security team

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Obama rolled out his national security team Monday."]CHICAGO (CNN) - President-elect Barack Obama selected New York Sen. Hillary Clinton for the position of secretary of state Monday.

Obama also announced his decision to keep Defense Secretary Robert Gates in his current post, and named retired Marine Gen. Jim Jones as national security adviser.

Watch: Obama nominates Clinton to lead national security team

Arizona Gov. Janet Napolitano has been named secretary of homeland security, Eric Holder as attorney general, and Susan Rice as United Nations ambassador.

"In this uncertain world, the time has come for a new beginning - a new dawn of American leadership to overcome the challenges of the 21st century, and to seize the opportunities embedded in those challenges," Obama said.

"To succeed, we must pursue a new strategy that skillfully uses, balances, and integrates all elements of American power: our military and diplomacy; our intelligence and law enforcement; our economy and the power of our moral example. The team that we have assembled here today is uniquely suited to do just that. They share my pragmatism about the use of power, and my sense of purpose about America's role as a leader in the world."

Full story

Filed under: Obama transition
soundoff (508 Responses)
  1. Sanjay

    I heartily congratulate President Elect Obama to have shown the path to move ahead with the best possible intention of serving a great nation as the U.S.A. and I personally wish him for all his endeavors.

    December 1, 2008 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  2. Independent voter

    Obama will one day go don in history as the smartest and most amazing president America has ever seen! You watch!

    December 1, 2008 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  3. Ia Guy

    @Dan: While I'm not anti-Hillary, I'm still failing to see all this foreign policy experience she supposedly has. Someone please enlighten me


    Do you honestly think she didn't have input during Bill's presidency? Honestly? She was criticized for being too involved. Do you think Michelle will sit on the sidelines while Obama makes his decisions? No. While it won't be public, she will definitely gain a great deal of experience being present.

    Welcome back Clintons!

    December 1, 2008 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  4. carmen

    So Bill Clinton can be even more hotly pursued by foreign governments and businesses in 4 or 8 years. What a good plan for the Clintons.

    December 1, 2008 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  5. Bushwhacked in Eugene, OR

    Will all you naysayers please stop whining that 'this is not change'!

    Change comes from the top, from the policies of the President, not from bringing in a bunch of new people who haven't a clue how to do anything in D.C.

    I voted for Obama because I liked his vision of change - the things he wanted to change, and I have every confidence he will govern with that basis of change in mind.

    I think he's done a great job of selecting people whose best interests are in the United States of America, not in political ideology.

    December 1, 2008 11:59 am at 11:59 am |
  6. Clintons in charge

    Is Hillary Clinton better or more experienced than Colin Powell, who is secretary of state under George Bush? He is loyal to both Bill Clinton and George Bush, so he will be loyal to Barack Obama. When it comes to foreign policy, in a dangerous world, who is better, or more experienced and qualified, than commander-in-chief Barack Obama or secretary of state Hillary Clinton, or the Democratic party? Remember Jimmy Carter?

    December 1, 2008 12:00 pm at 12:00 pm |
  7. KofTX

    This guy is REALLY good...

    December 1, 2008 12:00 pm at 12:00 pm |
  8. Jeff in Illinois

    A lot of Bush-Lovers complain that there is no reason the Republicans should "unite" and move the country in a positive direction, because the "Left" didn't support Bush.

    Nobody is asking Republicans to support Obama if he destroys the country. Remember, Bush's approval rating was around 90% after 9/11, 75% at the start of the Iraq War, and tapered off from there to the current 25% range. Sorry to break it to you, but people, including half of the people who voted for him, apparently, lost their confidence and support for him because of the direction he led the nation. He had the support, he blew it.

    With Congress, he had a policy of unilateralism. He basically told lawmakers they were either "YEA" voters for the Patriot Act, or they were "With the Terrorists".

    Try to remember a bit of recent history.

    December 1, 2008 12:00 pm at 12:00 pm |
  9. Steve - Minneapolis

    To Erika, KS:

    ... and those who look down on a leader who surrounds himself with experts. We just experienced 8 years with Bush who was inexperienced and inclined not to include advisors who differed with his opinions. I'll take intelligence over experience any day. We see Barack picking advisors to get the job done and I bet they won't be afraid to say what they think. A true leader inspires his team to work toward the goals. This is what we seem to get with Barack

    December 1, 2008 12:00 pm at 12:00 pm |
  10. Anna

    Now go and invade pakistan or let India to do her duty. Dont follow Bush policies, stop calling those terrorist countries as buddies.

    December 1, 2008 12:00 pm at 12:00 pm |
  11. Living in the USA

    I wonder would she have given him a job had she been elected President. Obama would have been still waiting on that 3:00am phone call.

    December 1, 2008 12:00 pm at 12:00 pm |
  12. GaVoter

    Change Obama believes in??

    December 1, 2008 12:01 pm at 12:01 pm |
  13. Central Scruitinizer

    to the morons who think the stock market tanking is related to Obamas picking hillary for SOS YOU ARE IDIOTS, prolly the same dopes that think Palin could be President. Yeah shed be great for the country right now

    December 1, 2008 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm |
  14. chris from STL

    Great team .... well done PE Obama. This is how to you get tings accomplished. ... diversity of people and ideas to bring best solution possible to move forward .... good bye to divisive partisan politics!!!

    December 1, 2008 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm |
  15. Don Johnson

    Once again we see the appointment of a Secretary of State as a political payoff. Wouldn't it be nice to see someone named based on ability to do the job.

    December 1, 2008 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  16. David, Silver Spring, MD

    I still think Bill Richardson would've been a more inspired choice for SoS. However, HRC is at least as politically-savvy and tough as Condelezza Rice and better well known on the international stage.

    December 1, 2008 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  17. Turn Texas BLUE

    A wonderful choice he has picked, and thats how women should be represented!!! SO FOR ALL OF YOU Republicans on here saying that Hillary represents THE SAME!!!! GET A LIFE!!!! and PALIN represents DUMB and I as a women do not want to be represented that way!!!

    And you are still bitter about the landslide that occured in OCTOBER!!!

    December 1, 2008 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  18. Marco

    You Repubs are hilarious. You voted for the WORST administration in the history of this country TWICE.....and you have the audacity to attack Obama and his choices for cabinet positions. Your advice is given to deaf ears because we're facing TWO wars, and the worst economic crisis since 1929. All because of George Bush. How can anyone take you guys seriously?

    December 1, 2008 12:05 pm at 12:05 pm |
  19. Esther in Fl

    This only shows what a great leader Obama is.
    He hires for his weakness and that is not Washington as usual
    He will have an effective presidency and he will go down with Bill Clinton as one of the greatest presidents of our time

    December 1, 2008 12:05 pm at 12:05 pm |
  20. Ann

    Hillary as Secretary of State is the only good news in the past 6 months.

    December 1, 2008 12:05 pm at 12:05 pm |
  21. Peggy Lucas, Middletown, Pennsylvania

    This is the first time in eight years that I have confidence in the United States and our leaders! Good job President Obama.

    December 1, 2008 12:05 pm at 12:05 pm |
  22. Hols

    "December 1st, 2008 11:23 am ET

    Those two deserve each other…unfortunately the rest of who didn't vote for either of them will have to pay the price for their egos…this should be fun watching them head butt each other!"

    If you didn't vote – you really forfeit the right to have have a voice in what happens IMHO. It's a cowardly approach to not express an opinion via your vote and then to complain about the approach of the administration – regardless of who wins. If you care about this country, then exercise your right to vote.

    Regarding Obama's choices to date – he is showing good solid pragmatic leadership! And he's staying fairly balanced and bi-partisan. His appts appear like strong choices. They still need to be held accountable and prove they have what it takes – but great start!

    December 1, 2008 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  23. Amanda, GA

    It looks Barack cannot find cabinet members for his CHANGE. I am sure this is alarming to American people who have elected him. His inexperience, his knowledge is troublesome for our nation. Those who write here have no clue. We can have a big Government a huge team of advisers. Waste fo money, really.

    December 1, 2008 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |

    ehhh I wanted Richardson for this and don't particularly care for Hillary but...

    December 1, 2008 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  25. RJ, Phoenix

    Napolitano as secretary of homeland security?!?
    Is Obama serious?
    She can't even keep AZ secure let alone an entire nation.
    Hopefully she will take her buddy, Mayor Gordon with her.

    Good thing is that with her gone, it will put a Republican in charge of AZ.
    Let's hope our new Governor can dig us out of the $2 billion deficit Janet put us in.

    December 1, 2008 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
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