December 8th, 2008
12:19 PM ET
12 years ago

Obama still to fill key positions, possibly with Republicans

President-elect Barack Obama still has some key staffing decisions to make.

President-elect Barack Obama still has some key staffing decisions to make.

(CNN) - President-elect Barack Obama's team has pledged to appoint Republicans to his administration, but so far, just one Republican is set to hold a leading Cabinet post.

Obama last week announced that he wants Defense Secretary Robert Gates to stay on board for at least another year.

Asked if Gates meets the requirement for a Republican on the Cabinet, Obama said he didn't "check his voter registration."

"What I was most concerned with was whether or not they can serve the interests of the American people," Obama said.

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Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama
soundoff (78 Responses)
  1. JT

    I don't mind that the Prez-elect shows by-partisian. As long as he keeps them in check.

    December 8, 2008 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  2. Bill in Ct.

    Enough with plating with peoples lives. Bring the troops home and end this bogus invasion of another country. Everyone knows that it was a lie to invade Iraq, so why in the hell are we still debuting on when to get out and how to get out, just end the occupation. The Iraqies want us out of their country so why in the hell are we still there, I'll tell you why, GGGGREED AND MONEY. And the U.S. government is nothing but BIG BULLIES, PERIOD!!!!!!!!!

    December 8, 2008 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  3. JL

    I think it is great that we are even talking about integrating the two parties in this administration. After the last 8 years of "them against us" ideology, I didn't think I'd ever see the two sides work together. It's kinda.....nice.

    December 8, 2008 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  4. Precious Coker, NY

    Secret democrats, I think?

    December 8, 2008 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  5. Dr. Stoner

    Putting moderate Republicans in the mix will give balance to the perception of ultra liberal I am a conservative Democrat and I feel confortable with Obama right now. Sorry I did not vote for him this time out but maybe next time.

    December 8, 2008 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  6. James Harris

    Education is a vital part of our democracy...............who better to serve as Secretary of Education that Colen Powell. He is a man of integrity and ethical behavior..............what an opportunity to have a true American Statesman in a position of vital importance to the nation.

    December 8, 2008 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  7. Getting It Right

    MSM is going to drive themselves into a frenzy trying to dictate Obama's agenda.

    December 8, 2008 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  8. FreeNLovIt

    To Mari

    Thank God the DONKEYS arent CRAZY enough to go the EXTREME LEFT, the way W took us to the EXTREME Right. It's called having a good sound leader.

    December 8, 2008 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  9. geecee827

    Obama is picking the best this country has to offer. So what if they are former Clinton people, so what if they are Republicans, so what if they are independants? Regardless of what their party affiliation is, as long as they are qualified, competent, capable and rational and can do the job successfully, he will choose them. That's the idea, isn't it? He won't choose someone just to be different. Our Country's future is at stake. No time to experiment like Bush did with people like "Brownie" , who didn't have a clue on how to manage FEMA. Obama is so much smarter than that and he is fair, too. He will pick only the best to run this country. Did anyone see him on Meet The Press yesterday morning? He's just awesome. Truly, I know that word is overused, but he just has so much common sense, speaks so logically so anyone can understand him, but gets to the crux of the matter without saying anything superfluous or repetitive. He's excellent. I am so glad to we chose him to be our President.

    December 8, 2008 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  10. Just another CNN poster

    Former Democrat and Silence Dogood are one in the same poster. And you sir, regardless of the name you post under were never a Democrat.

    Barack is picking one of the most diverse administrations we have ever seen. Not just a couple of tokens.

    It’s about time to see the full breadth of the US population get represented.

    December 8, 2008 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |

    HIRE ME!

    December 8, 2008 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  12. Joe Fattal

    Barack, don't forget Oprah.

    December 8, 2008 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |


    oh wait, YES WE DID!

    December 8, 2008 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  14. Greed is not good

    Only 1 or 2 more Republicans is enough. Please appoint Chuck Hagel and maybe Arnold Swartnegger in 2 years when he is done as Governor of CA.

    He is doing a good job overall with his selections. Give him time to finish before casting judgements.

    December 8, 2008 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  15. Mike, Syracuse NY

    John in Ohio, You wingnuts on the left are STILL whining about the 2000 election saying Bush stole it. The recount was finished and REALLY DID LOSE. NY Republican, well said. Obama claims to want to bring the country together. You'd never know it from hs supporters on the CNN blog. John, your guy won, stop being such sore winners already. Just remember that 2/3rds of the people who could have voted in this election, either didn't vote or voted for McCain. Obama won with 1/3rd of the vote. He still needs to win over the 100 million voting age Americans who didn't vote for him. Do you think your tired insults help?

    December 8, 2008 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  16. Lawrence in Denver

    Regardless of what party (left, right, independent, green, etc.), PE Obama has chosen the best of the best. He has chosen people with integrity and dedication.

    This is nothing short of amzaing.

    Jan 20th is right around the corner!

    ~Lawrence in Denver

    December 8, 2008 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  17. T the B

    Why after 8 years of the most corrupt partisan administration, that has ever been in the white house, are we so concerned with reaching across the aisle?

    December 8, 2008 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  18. shucks

    I am sure President Elect Obama is working extremely hard to determine which persons would be beneficial to his administration, and which ones would be a detriment. Bipartisanship has always been a healing factor in elections that were so bitter. However, I am sure that the Obama transition team is vetting the best they can, and the least controversial. They are not going to put any republican right wing christian nutjobs in office as they are way to out of touch with the American mainstream, hence the election results. Their divisiveness will take years to heal the wounds of racism and hatred, and McCain and Palin were their hallowed losers. McCain will always be remembered as the Republican nominee who had a chance to win the office of President, but was lured by the extreme right. I'm sure he'll regret it forever.

    December 8, 2008 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  19. Charles Atlanta

    Yes. He needs to find the best people in each position to lead us through this crisis. I'm glad to have Obama as our next president. That shows his leadership and characters.

    December 8, 2008 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  20. JJ12345

    Why are people so happy that he is reaching across the aisle, if you read any other message board on here, the republicians should all be in jail, or never to be heard from again


    December 8, 2008 05:11 pm at 5:11 pm |
  21. Ken in Dallas

    How does it feel to have a President-elect whose word is his bond?

    As for Libertarians and Greens, we have to remember Obama's trying to build a team, not a fight club. Everybody gets to have their own ideas, but they all have to remember who's in charge.

    Come back and complain when he starts firing people for speaking the truth to him. If that happens, I'll be right there with you.

    December 8, 2008 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm |
  22. Annie the Democrat

    Obama overload again.........of course he is going to be Bi-Partisan. Where is the news story here?

    I'd rather you focus more on why is Congress keeping Rangel in charge of Ethics after everything he has done and been accused of?

    This is NOT the CHANGE we are looking for and I hope President Elect Obama makes an example of Rangel and the rest of the crooks in Washington.

    December 8, 2008 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |
  23. TyWebb

    What about George W. Bush? I hear he will be out of work soon. How about Dick Cheney?

    December 8, 2008 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  24. ChicagoSuz

    Maybe if we drop the labels & focus on the expertise, we might actually be able to get something done this time...

    December 8, 2008 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  25. Farrell, Houston, Tx

    Obama isn't going to be pressured by any political party in selecting his administration, he's picking the best of the best. Republicans must be worried that he might take their "cream of the crop". But they shouldn't, he doesn't want Palin because his picks are way out of her league. Enough said.

    December 8, 2008 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
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