How Obama Picks Nominees
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.
| February 13, 2009; 4:40 PM ET
Categories: Administration, Revolving Door, Video Report
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