It was Senator Obama’s campaign slogan for over a year. “Change we can believe in.” He was going to come in to Washington and make all the difference in the world – he told us he was going to end the insider politics and bring in real change to government. Let’s look at the appointments so far:
Timothy Geithner: Treasury Secretary. Joined the Treasury department in 1988 and worked under three administrations, including the Clinton era.
Hillary Clinton: Secretary of State. I think she was loosely tied to the White House in the 90’s. I could be wrong though. I am still not sure how she can legally and constitutionally get the gig.
Lawrence Summers: National Economic Council. Worked under Clinton for a short period.
Bill Richardson: Secretary of Commerce. Served as Energy Secretary under Clinton.
Tom Daschle: Secretary of Health & Human Services. Served in Congress from 1979 to 1987, when he moved to the Senate, where he served from 1988 to 2005. During his tenure he was Senate Majority Leader and also the head of the Democratic Policy Committee. Definitely not a Washington insider.
Eric Holder: Attorney General. Served as Deputy AG under Clinton.
Janet Napolitano: Actually has NOT been in Washington yet!
Robert Gates: Secretary of Defense. Has been working under the Bush administration for a couple years.
Hilda Solis: Department of Labor. Worked in Congress since 2000.
Ray LaHood: Secretary of Transportation. Served in Congress since 1994. Also from Illinois.
Ron Kirk: US Trade Representative. Worked directly for Bill & Hillary Clinton.
Karen Mills: Small Business Administration. Previously ran Solera Captial, LLC, which has contributed to the Clinton Global Initiative. Also an active member of “Hillary Clinton for President.”
Arne Duncan: Secretary of Education. Chicagoan – works for the Chicago Public Schools.
So out of 13 people (so far), 12 of them are either tied to Obama’s life in Illinois, tied to the Clintons, and/or have made been a part of Washington Politics for a significant part of recent years. “No more insider politics?” Yep – this is the brand of “Change” that I can definitely believe in. We’ve seen it all before.
Thanks to Reuters, Washington Post and congress.gov for help in finding some of the above information.