Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Pentagon: Obama to Fire Majority of 600 Bush Appointees

News in Balance

News in Balance:

WASHINGTON, Dec. 3, 2008 -- While Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates will stay in office in President-elect Barack Obama’s administration, other Bush administration political appointees will move on, a Pentagon spokesman said today.

More than 600 political appointees work in the Defense Department, 49 of them in positions requiring Senate confirmation. The Senate confirmed Gates in December 2006, and he does not have to go through that process again.

During a news roundtable yesterday, Gates said the vast majority of political appointees will leave Jan. 20 as planned. Others will remain until their successors are named and confirmed, Pentagon spokesman Bryan Whitman told reporters today.

“There may be a very small number of folks that are asked to stay beyond that,” Whitman added.

Deputy Defense Secretary Gordon England announced yesterday that he will leave Jan. 20 or upon confirmation of his replacement. The defense undersecretaries for policy, personnel and readiness, intelligence, comptroller, and acquisition, technology and logistics -- as well as most of the assistant defense secretaries -- are expected to leave then also. “I would expect to see a new team,” Whitman said.

Some positions will be “gapped” – meaning that the incumbent will leave the position Jan. 20 and it will be left vacant until the Senate confirms the nominee. Some positions are so important, however, that the secretary may ask the incumbent to remain in place, Whitman said.

“At this point, I am not aware of any that he has asked to do that,” Whitman said. “We will see in the days ahead whether that becomes necessary and how quickly the new team gets aligned and is ready to come into position. If there are some positions that the secretary feels he cannot gap and instead [needs to] bridge with somebody, [he will see] if those individuals are willing to do that.”

Those bridging the gaps will not have definite dates for departure, and therefore would not be able to make plans with potential new employers, Whitman explained. But he expressed confidence they would remain until their successors are in place if necessary. “The people in these positions have a tremendous sense of duty,” he said.

Gates will be involved in the president-elect’s DoD staffing process, Whitman said, interviewing the senior people and giving his opinion to the Obama.

“Still, the people nominated will serve at the pleasure of the president, and Obama will have the final say,” Whitman said.

(Report by Jim Garamone, American Forces Press Service.)

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Blogger Mykl said...

Gee. I wonder what the odds are that the DOJ will investigate this as 'political retribution' the same way the Democrat Party investigated President Bush's firing of the previous administrations lawyers?

A billion to one?

Once again, the collective stupdity of the whiny, knee-jerk, elistist, bleeding-heart, uber-liberal Democrat Party is surpassed ONLY by their incredible and mind numbing intellectual dishonesty.

Enjoy the next four years, Dems. After the full scope of the damage you will have created is understood, your party will not see a congressional majority, nor the Presidency for at least the next 50 years.

2:06 PM EST  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You know, I said pretty much expressed the same observation about the DOJ issue to my wife after I saw this news.

It's interesting to note that the popularity of President Bush suffered greatly mainly because he reached across the aisle.

Here we have Obama, who says he is going to be bi-partisan, cleaning out the ranks, compared to Bush, who was bi-partisan and charged with being the most divisive in politics.

Democrats and liberals hatefully blame Republicans and conservatives for beings so divisive when in fact is is the Democrats and liberals who are divisive in their hatred of Republicans and conservatives.

2:22 PM EST  
Blogger BeyondKen said...

>Mykl said "I wonder what the odds are that the DOJ will investigate this as 'political retribution' the same way the Democrat Party investigated President Bush's firing of the previous administrations lawyers?"

Uh, Mikey? The Democratic congress investigated Pres. Bush's firing of his _own_ federal prosecutors.

3:22 PM EST  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think he was referring to the Clinton appointed attorneys, many of whom were retained by Bush in the spirit of bipartisianship and reaching across the aisle, who were eventually fired for performance issues. The firings were then turned into a political issue by liberals, Democrats and the mainstream media.

We all know has that reaching across the aisle foolishness worked out for Bush and even saw its dismal failure in the McCain campaign ... and that's not to say McCain didn't have structural issues to begin with.

4:13 PM EST  

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