Thursday, November 20, 2008

David Axelrod takes senior adviser position...

Flashing back to before the election, Ben Smith wrote a piece, Dems mull post-election Axelrod role. Now that it's been announced that Axelrod has accepted a senior adviser position, it's kind of interesting to look back at who said it wasn't a good idea and their reasoning:

But while Democrats who know Axelrod say they expect him to make the jump to the White House, some consultants advised against the move. They pointed to Rove, whose post as deputy chief of staff gave him enormous power but also made him a target for liberal ire and congressional investigations.

"I'm not sure the Rove model is a great model," said Bob Shrum, who was John Kerry's chief adviser, saying Bush's "overpoliticization of the White House staff is a cautionary tale." "I would never have done it if we had somehow or other eked out 60,000 more votes in Ohio," he said.

"My concern is that if he does do it, the focus will be on Axelrod and politics and it could well distract from the principal mission that Obama will have, which is getting America back on track," said Schoen, a pollster who was a close White House adviser to Clinton, but in his capacity as consultant to the Democratic National Committeee.

"After what happened, I'm not convinced it's in anybody's interest to have a political guru as deputy chief of staff," he said, saying the Clinton model "worked just fine. We had plenty of access, and there was a clear demarcation of politics and policy." Rove himself declined to offer Axelrod advice on his next move, should Obama win.

It's almost a tale of conflicting beliefs if you then read Chris Cillizza's piece, Bill Clinton Agrees to Disclose Names of Foundation Donors because you have some people stating that:
McCaskill said any Obama supporter upset that an appointment went to a former rival should realize that the president-elect's willingness to work with past foes is a reason so many people supported him. "People are going to have to set aside what they want and think about what the country needs," she said. "The old school was that you reward your friends and punish your enemies. But it's a new day, and there is no reward and punishment going on."

Picking people that have demonstrated they are politically divisive like Rahm and Axelrod as well as rewarding those from Chicago with jobs is one message, picking someone like Clinton (who I hopes says no and continues to serve as a New York Senator) is another.

I personally think Richardson would be a better Secretary of State and I don't see a scenario where a positive outcome will happen if Clinton were the Secretary of State. Though considering the news that Bill Clinton is providing donor information and has agreed to vet future speeches and overseas activities with members of the Obama administration, suggests that Hillary is seriously considering this. It's really a political career ender for her, it would end any chances of more power in the Senate and create a scenario with the potential problems in the world that walking away from it with with success stories would be a huge challenge.

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