Obama to nominate Clinton as Secretary of State today

December 1st, 2008 - 2:55 pm ICT by ANI  

Barack Obama

Chicago, Dec.1 (ANI): U.S. President-elect Barack Obama plans to announce Hillary Clinton, the New York senator and former rival for the Democratic presidential nomination, as the countrys next Secretary of State at a press conference here on Monday.
A Fox News report said that Obama would also reveal his national security team and beyond, completing the nominations for a third of his Cabinet.
His selections include some of his most loyal campaign advisers and notably some who were not, including Democratic primary rival Clinton and President Bush’’s defense secretary, Robert Gates, staying in his current post.
Obama will also name Susan Rice as UN ambassador, Arizona Governor Janet Napolitano as homeland security chief and Eric Holder as attorney general, Democratic officials told FOX News.
Last week, he named key members of his economic team, including Timothy Geithner, president of Federal Reserve Bank of New York, as treasury secretary. Obama is not yet ready to name his intelligence advisers, one Democratic official said.
To clear the way for his wife to take the job, former President Bill Clinton agreed to disclose the names of every contributor to his foundation since its inception in 1997. He”ll also refuse donations from foreign governments to the Clinton Global Initiative, his annual charitable conference, and will cease holding CGI meetings overseas.
Bill Clinton’’s business deals and global charitable endeavors were expected to create problems for Hillarys nomination.
But in negotiations with the Obama transition team, the former president agreed to several measures designed to bring transparency to his post-presidential work, including:
– to volunteer to step away from day-to-day management of the foundation while his wife is secretary of state.
– to submit his speaking schedule to review by the State Department and White House counsel.
– to submit any new sources of income to a similar ethical review.
“It’’s a big step,” said Senator Richard G. Lugar of Indiana, the top Republican on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, who said he plans to vote to confirm Clinton.
Lugar said there would still be “legitimate questions” raised about the former president’’s extensive international involvement.
The Clinton pick was an extraordinary gesture of goodwill after a year in which the two rivals competed for the Democratic nomination in a long, bitter primary battle.
Advisers said Obama had for several months envisioned Clinton as his top diplomat, and he invited her to Chicago to discuss the job just a week after the November 4 election. The two met privately November 13 in Obama’’s downtown transition office.
Clinton was said to be interested and then to waver, concerned about relinquishing her Senate seat and the political independence it conferred. Those concerns were largely ameliorated after Obama assured her she would be able to choose a staff and have direct access to him, advisers said.
Remaining in the Senate also may not have been an attractive choice for Clinton. Despite her political celebrity, she is a relatively junior senator without prospects for a leadership position or committee chairmanship anytime soon.
Clinton, 61, a Chicago native and Yale Law School graduate, practiced law and served as the First Lady of Arkansas during her husband’’s 12 years as governor of the state, from 1979-81 and 1983-1992.
Clinton was the nation’’s First Lady from 1993 to 2001. The same year George W. Bush defeated Al Gore to succeed her husband in the White House, Clinton ran for the Senate as a New York Democrat. She won re-election in 2006 and was widely regarded as the favorite for her party’’s nomination for president in 2008.
In the Senate, Clinton served on the Armed Services Committee, the Committee on Environment and Public Works and the Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions. (ANI)

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