MSNBC reports that Tom Daschle is being tapped as the for Chairman of Health and Human Services Committee.
Nothing surprising here. Obama has long had ties with Tom Daschle. Daschle leant Obama many of his top staffers for his Senate office, including Obama’s Chief of Staff, and was an early supporter and promoter. In fact, out of every significant political player, Daschle has been Obama’s top advisor and mentor.
Health Care has always been Tom Daschle’s top issue so the two picks fit.
News also broke last night that Obama has offered Eric Holder the Attorney General position, and Holder has accepted. Holder would be the first African American Attorney General. (And likely the next Supreme Court Justice, unless the retiring Justice is a woman.)
While Holder is well liked and respected, there’s some issue regarding his role in the Marc Rich pardon.
But I agree with the analysis from Politico that says that Hillary Clinton’s potential SoS nomination might provide cover for any lingering doubts about Holder. Despite the significant difference between the SoS and AG, it would be pretty hard for the Senate to make a huge fuss over Holder’s role in the Rich pardon, but let Clinton go scott free. And before you say anything, there’s zero chance that Clinton’s nominee would be rejected.
I doubt Holder will have any problems getting confirmed, since he’s gone on the record several times apologizing for his “lack of judgement” on the matter.
The interesting thing about Holder as attorney general is that some have speculated that it pretty much gurantees a Clinton SoS. The logic is that since Obama passed on Janet Napolitano, the Govenor of Arizona, for AG Obama will feel pressured to pick another high profile woman for a cabinet position.
Though at this point, the locomotive that is the Clinton for SoS can only be stopped by Hillary herself.