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McCain Lays Out His Top Cabinet Picks

By Glenn Kessler
John McCain has made it clear that Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson shouldn't expect to keep his job if the Arizona senator confounds the pundits and wins the presidency next week.

Asked in an interview with CNBC and BusinessWeek if he would ask Paulson to stay on, at least temporarily, McCain replied: "I'm disappointed that Secretary Paulson has not put first emphasis on buying these home mortgages and keeping people in their homes. I certainly would have somebody who'd give that our highest priority."

McCain was also asked whom he would name as Treasury secretary, commerce secretary and secretary of defense. McCain didn't hesitate to toss out a few names: Defense Secretary Robert "Gates has done a fabulous job. [Former eBay chief executive] Meg Whitman, of one of my most trusted advisers. [Former GE chief] Jack Welch is a great guy. I have utmost trust and confidence in [Sen.] Joe Lieberman."

Sounds like Gates gets to keep his job and Lieberman is headed to State. Welch and Whitman would have duke it out over who gets Treasury and who gets the less prestigious Commerce job.

By Web Politics Editor  |  October 31, 2008; 2:41 PM ET
Categories:  John McCain , Transition  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Rick Davis Sees "One of the Greatest Comebacks"
Next: Obama Back on Iowa's Hallowed Ground


Leiberman likes Obama now ...I wonder why.

McCain is really tired or getting old because he's been making a lot of mistakes by forgetting or misremembering facts, such as trying to recall his endorsements on Meet The Press, and the difference between the Phillies and Pirates. But this one takes the cake. In this one, McCain forgets who he is trying to insult:
(60 secs.)

Posted by: NeilSagan | November 1, 2008 10:07 AM | Report abuse

Hey, only one comment from thecannula on this site? Must be slipping. Or maybe the robocall got hung up.

Posted by: taid | November 1, 2008 2:51 AM | Report abuse

Please Not Joe Lieberman-- what a self-serving flip-flopper. He brings little value...

Posted by: Towards_Light | November 1, 2008 1:23 AM | Report abuse

Associated Press
AP poll: 1 in 7 voters still persuadable
By ALAN FRAM 10.31.08, 9:19 AM ET

WASHINGTON - Patrick Campbell worries Barack Obama will raise his taxes but thinks John McCain will send people off to war. He says that leaves him leaning toward Obama ... maybe.

"I'm split right down the middle," said the 50-year-old Air Force Reserve technician from Amherst, N.Y. "Each one has things that are good for me and things that are bad for me. And people like me."

With the sand in the 2008 campaign hourglass about depleted, Campbell is part of a stubborn wedge of people who, somehow, are still making up their minds about who should be president. One in seven, or 14 percent, can't decide, or back a candidate but might switch, according to an Associated Press-Yahoo (nasdaq: YHOO - news - people ) News poll of likely voters released Friday.



Posted by: thecannula | October 31, 2008 11:39 PM | Report abuse


Joe Tha Plumber for Secretary of State!

The "Dude" for Secretary of Inland Security!

The White House will be put on e-Bay and Wasilla Alaska will be the New Capital!

Ya betcha!!

Posted by: ElMugroso | October 31, 2008 11:07 PM | Report abuse

Another example of the unmitigated, bald-faced hypocrisy of the McCain-Palin campaign! Just heard on the news this evening that the McCain campaign is spouting off about how Obama has already picked his White House Chief of Staff. Then we sit down to read the Post and here's this article that McCain has named his top cabinet!

Don't these people realize how they look to people????

Oh, by the way -- McCain also announced today at a campaign rally that he's heading to Washington and "I'm taking Joe (the Plumber) with me!" OMG!!!!! What is Joe going to be? -- oh, let us guess! Since he's ready to purchase a $250,000 plumbing business, guess that qualifies him for Secretary of Labor!

Give us a break. These people should not be within 100 miles of the White House!


Posted by: danjanbee | October 31, 2008 10:32 PM | Report abuse

Wait a minute, wasn't McCain complaining yesterday about Obama picking his cabinet and measuring for Oval Office drapes? At least Obama has reason to look ahead.

Posted by: dcwsano

Yep. McHypocrite's at it again. Everything he accuses Obama of doing, he does himself. Simply amazing.

Posted by: SGall23241 | October 31, 2008 6:06 PM | Report abuse

On the subject of whom our political candidates choose to surround themselves with:
What Arizona Senator and his office of the early 1990’s considered themselves too busy or above the common man to even offer acknowledgement of the written and telephone pleas of this grieving mother to re-examine the grossly mishandled prosecution of her 15 year old son’s murderers?
This was not some random inner city event that sadly, too often, is brushed aside by authorities. This was a planned and paid for execution of three people in a middle class suburb of Phoenix, a plan that was hatched and executed over several states. A plan thorough enough that it was only a wry twist of fate and a tough officer of the law in yet another state, six months after the murders, that made three arrests and got a confession from the shooter.
Under our justice system (which I used to believe in) that should have been the beginning of the end. Try them, convict them and punish them but it didn’t go down that way. The shooter plea bargained to avoid the death penalty, a fourth co-conspirator that was located was given total immunity for her testimony, the youngest co-conspirator pled out as well but his father, the only one with the intelligence or money to have made this happen, chose to stand trial. He was tried and convicted.
As I anxiously awaited a sentencing hearing, having just buried my husband due to the stress of all this, there were dealings behind the scene. The defense attorney admitted himself to drug rehab. While awaiting a decision if the conviction would in fact, be overturned for inadequate counsel, this defendant’s son was housed with the shooter and stabbed him for testifying against his father. The defendant was released on $55,000 bond (for 3 murders?) There were many twists and turns as this dragged on for years but the bottom line is there never was a retrial, just a gross miscarriage of justice.
Two of the victims were extremely bright young people with promising futures that likely would have contributed a great deal to the world they lived in. Now we will never know…
The lack of so much as a letter saying they could not help me from the Senator’s office left me devastated and disillusioned and while I can not say with absolute certainty that the Senator himself actually saw or heard of my pleas it is a certainty that he hand picked the people in his office that would decide what issues were worthy of his attention. What does this say?

Posted by: tra_beau | October 31, 2008 5:54 PM | Report abuse

Oh McCain gives me a headache! I don't want Obama and his socialist agenda, but McCain is such an idiot. He shoots himself in the foot over and over again. Why would you ever do such a thing and name your cabinet picks? Especially with names that inspire no confidence. If he loses, the Republicans so deserve it. We had a great slate of candidates and we picked the worst, all because the Christian Right was so blinded by their anit-Mormon bigotry! Even if it wasn't Mitt, did Huckabee have to suck up to McCain? I'd rather see Huckabee than McCain, but he became McCains little toadstool to play spoiler for Mitt. If he'd actually compaigned against McCain, this might be a different race. Forget it, Huckabee is an idiot too. And Palin ... Argh!!!!!!

Posted by: jpenname | October 31, 2008 5:24 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: MarkInAustin | October 31, 2008 5:03 PM | Report abuse

Meg Whitman is the Sarah Palin of e-commerce.

Posted by: mprichter | October 31, 2008 4:36 PM | Report abuse

Roberta1, you don't know what you're talking about. The Constitution gives the Senate alone, not the House, a right to veto presidential appointments, but there's a long, eminently sensible tradition of allowing incoming presidents to pick their cabinets without interference. And nowhere in the Constitution does it say that a president can't *fire* a cabinet secretary without permission from Congress!

Posted by: wumhenry | October 31, 2008 3:58 PM | Report abuse

Wait a minute, wasn't McCain complaining yesterday about Obama picking his cabinet and measuring for Oval Office drapes? At least Obama has reason to look ahead.

Posted by: dcwsano | October 31, 2008 3:58 PM | Report abuse

Who's gonna be "Secretary of Whack Jobs", Carly Fiorina?

Posted by: NotBubba | October 31, 2008 3:53 PM | Report abuse

Forbes published the same blather as Davis said. For those who believe in miracles:

Rational people need not bother.

Posted by: Gator-ron | October 31, 2008 3:39 PM | Report abuse

Obama Supporters are Using Huckabee in new online ad.

Criminal charges may be brought up on Palin for ethics issues?

Posted by: pastor123 | October 31, 2008 3:37 PM | Report abuse

The president can't 'fire' Paulson, he is appointed and confirmed. The president may make a suggestion but only the senate and house can say yes or no. McCain is so out of touch. Send him back to AZ and retire to one of his 7 homes. Checkout and the video of Mccain and Larry king, McCain couldnt' remember the city or newspaper, the man is a joke

Posted by: Roberta1 | October 31, 2008 3:36 PM | Report abuse

If you want to know if you are reading partisan biased media or not read what they say about the race. If they say that the race is getting tight and is too close to call they are biased toward Obama. If they say that it has tightened up and McCain has a realist chance of winning without saying how he is going to do it, they are biased McCain. If they say that it is tightening up and there still is a wide gap between Obama and McCain they are being realistic. If they happen to mention that in the final few days that the election usually breaks slightly for the party out of power then you are getting the whole picture. That piece of information is not in the narrative for either party.

Posted by: Gator-ron | October 31, 2008 3:25 PM | Report abuse

Obasama would lay out his, but, what would be the Point?

AFTER the Election, that list, like sooooo many of his campaign "Promises"...


He DID promise "Changes"! :-(

Posted by: SAINT---The | October 31, 2008 3:22 PM | Report abuse

This list typifies McCain's limited thinking and non-existent leadership capacity. Leiberman as Sec State? This turncoat reminds me of a mangy mutt that runs back and forth with its tail tucked between its legs between two puddles of its vomit, lapping here and there. He's a sycophantish leech that attaches himself to whomever can keep him in power. He was jocking Bush. Then he attached himself to McCain. He even started talking up Obama when he's supposed to be McCain's main boy. He'd make no headway in the Middle East which is where we need to focus most of attention. He'd be immediately and soundly rejected by the Arab world. Not because he's Jewish. It would be because he was one of the main proponents and continued supporters of Bush's blind aggression in Iraq and idiotic stance toward the Palestinians. Leiberman would not be welcome in Saudi Arabia, Egypt, or anywhere of any importance in the Middle East. McCain has no imagination. Meg Whitman? Seriously, McCain supporters have to be some of the recalcitrantly regressive people on Earth. More of the same.

Posted by: ehperkins1971 | October 31, 2008 3:17 PM | Report abuse

God save America.

Jack Welch transformed GE from an industrial powerhouse into a Financial house of cards. the short term that move was quite profitable, unfortunately you don't have to look too far to see what an ultimately disastrous decision that was!

He's a loyal GOP'er, but a lousy executive!

Posted by: LeRiverend | October 31, 2008 3:16 PM | Report abuse

It's all fantasy like Joe the Plumber who was hired too late to clear the sh*t out of McCain's campaign.

Posted by: JRM2 | October 31, 2008 3:15 PM | Report abuse

More unvetted nominations for important places in the Federal government. Isn't this how we got Pa'in as Veep?

Posted by: Roofelstoon | October 31, 2008 3:15 PM | Report abuse

More unvetted nominations for important places in the Federal government. Isn't this how we got Pa'in as Veep?

Posted by: Roofelstoon | October 31, 2008 3:14 PM | Report abuse

I am relieved to hear that Paulson would not stay but the reason is that Paulson has too much sense to try his boneheaded idea to buy up mortgages at face value when that price will not be seen for at least a decade and market price is so much less.

What McCain is saying is that his administration will be governed solely by business insiders. What a breath of fresh air an Obama administration will be. I hope Obama will give us the names of some people that he thinks are fit.

Posted by: Gator-ron | October 31, 2008 3:01 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: MarkInAustin | October 31, 2008 3:01 PM | Report abuse

Sounds good to me. I'm keeping my fingers crossed for a McCain-Palin upset!

Posted by: MarkInAustin | October 31, 2008 2:56 PM | Report abuse

Could this Possibly mean, that at this late hour, he is in a moment of Lucidity, going to get a COMPETENT Mitt Romney as the VP?

Let Sarah try to grab up the Senate Seat, or be a Staffer?

John McCain has got to wake up and REALIZE, many of us do NOT want to have Sarah-"A Heartbeat Away!".

After the Election, it would become a PERMANENT Reality! There is NO Comparison of the Competence Levels between Mitt and Sarah!

There are HUNDREDS of Jobs that need workers in the Executive Branch/White House!

Posted by: SAINT---The | October 31, 2008 2:51 PM | Report abuse

I still can't believe that McCain didn't hire Mike Murphy to run his campaign like he did in 2000.

The Three Stooges could have done a better job of running campaign strategy than the second string Rovebots that McCain hired.

Posted by: DrainYou | October 31, 2008 2:49 PM | Report abuse

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