Paper: Obama Now Wants Bush Pentagon Appointees to Stay
News in Balance:
WASHINGTON, Dec. 23, 2008 -- Writing for The Washington Times, Bill Gertz today said U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates is asking many of the Bush administration's Pentagon appointees to remain on the job until the incoming Obama administration finds replacements -- in a move designed to prevent a dangerous leadership vacuum with American troops engaged in wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The unusual request by Mr. Gates, whom President-elect Barack Obama has asked to continue in his Cabinet post, ensures that key policy positions will not be left to "acting" subordinates as typically occurs when political appointees are directed to resign during a presidential transition.On December 3, the Pentagon released and then later retracted a news article that reported Gates was staying but the majority of Bush administration's 600 political appointees will be moving on. At the time, it was reported that Gates said the vast majority of political appointees will leave Jan. 20 as planned and said others will remain until their successors are named and confirmed.
"I have received authorization from the president-elect's transition team to extend a number of Department of Defense political appointees an invitation to voluntarily remain in their current positions until replaced," Mr. Gates said in a Friday e-mail.
The chance to stay is "available to all willing political appointees with the exception of those who are contacted individually and told otherwise," he said.
Links to the articles can be found below.
(Report from mainstream media and Pentagon sources.)
EXCLUSIVE: Obama wants Bush war team to stay
Pentagon: Obama to Fire Majority of 600 Bush Appointees
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