Doing the cabinet shuffle: who goes, who stays in Obama’s new administration?

Nov 9, 2012


US President Barack Obama, with Vice President Joe Biden (L), speaks on the economy in the East Room of the White House in Washington on November 9, 2012. Credit: NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP/Getty Images

Obama’s second term will be bringing some change-ups to top-level staff.  Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner have already announced their imminent departures; among others who may follow suit are Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta and Attorney General Eric Holder.  This offers President Obama a chance to do some reshaping of his cabinet. So who’s on the bench and ready to be sent in?

Speculation has circled around Massachussetts Senator John Kerry, U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice and former Romney rival Jon Huntsman to fill the Secretary of State post.  Names being bandied about for Geithner’s position include Chief of Staff Jack Lew and former Clinton chief Erskine Bowles (of Bowles-Simpson fame), or even former Deputy Secretary of State Robert Zoellick, a Republican.  Nebraska Senator Chuck Hagel, Defense Undersecretary Ashton Carter and former Defense Undersecretary Michele Flournoy have shown up as possibilities for Defense Secretary.  Depending on how many spots open up, there could be a lot of new blood in the White House.

Who would you like to see in the next Obama administration? With the fiscal cliff looming, threats to the economy here at home and abroad, and peaceful solutions still out of reach in the Middle East, what are the  most crucial seats to be filled?


Edward-Isaac Dovere, deputy White House editor, Politico

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