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How Obama Picks Nominees

By Ed O'Keefe

White House deputy chief of staff Jim Messina today provided some insight into the process through which the president and his aides choose and vet nominees for Cabinet posts and other top government positions.

"Typically [the office of] personnel puts together a list for the president, and we'll meet with him and he'll say 'These couple of people interest me. These people may be good for other things, probably not for this, why don't you give me something on these three people?'

"The vetting process has been misunderstood in this whole thing. Typically then we'll get down to one or two and then put them into deep vet. Then someone will come to me and say, 'Can you push this through?'"

In an interview with The Post's Anne E. Kornblut for an upcoming profile, Messina, who is responsible for personnel issues and political matters, also let on that a big focus of his time now, not surprisingly, would be on helping the president fill the top job at the Commerce Department.

"He wants to move forward and the third time has to be a charm," Messina said with a laugh.

Watch a portion of the interview above.

By Ed O'Keefe  | February 13, 2009; 4:40 PM ET
Categories:  Administration, Revolving Door, Video Report  
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Magic 8 Ball?

Posted by: sam51 | February 13, 2009 7:44 PM | Report abuse

This comment really does not quite apply to Gregg, for apparently it was Gregg who approached Obama first. The carrot of having jurisdiction over the census must have seemed attractive to the Republicans. As soon as Obama threatened to move the census into the White House, Gregg suddenly lost interest.

Posted by: dunnhaupt | February 13, 2009 9:13 PM | Report abuse

"How Obama Picks Nominees"...

Obama: Eeny, meeny, miny, moe...

Posted by: cintronlourdes | February 13, 2009 10:34 PM | Report abuse

It sure would be interesting and informative if President Barach Hussein Oboma would delegate some of his crew to explain whats in the Billion dollar package that he and his followers have come up with.So far nobody seems to have read it or has anything to say other than its going to make us or break us.I don't lile those odds.

Posted by: a4853916 | February 15, 2009 4:33 PM | Report abuse

The bloom is off the rose. The once affable messiah has shown his anger and does everything but stamp his feet when one of his programs is not accepted by the gullible "representatives of the people" occupying seats -- occasionally -- in the Senate and House. Would love to have info on the number of days the elected ones spend at their jobs. How many vacations do they take? Recent information indicates the the real rush to pass the stimulous bill was because Enpress Pelosi was scheduled for a vacation in Italy. God help us all.

Posted by: evelynadele | February 17, 2009 12:33 PM | Report abuse

People like "a4853916" ought to learn how to spell before they try to impersonate in intelligent adult online: "President Barach Hussein Oboma".

Learn how to spell the president's name pal!

"messiah"? "empress"?
Wow - the GOOPs haven't run out of KoolAid for their flocks of sheeple, have they?
I wonder if "evelynadele" ever asked the GOOP-controlled White House and Congress why they took RECORD AMOUNTS OF TIME OFF FROM THIER JOBS? Of was she blissfully ignorant of it all? She obviously is ignorant of the FACT that many many members of Congress go off on "junkets' and "fact-finding" trips as well as vacations during their Congressional recesses. Maybe if "evelynadele" read the Washington Post more, which is good at letting us know who is going where, she wouldn't be making such a fool of herself whining about the Demo-rat controlled Congress.

JACK ABRAMOFF IS IN JAIL FOR THOSE TRIPS. GOOPs took ILLEGAL money from him and his cohorts during their Congressional recess trips!

Posted by: lquarton | February 18, 2009 12:52 AM | Report abuse

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