Obama’s Dueling Transition Teams

by Jason Ditz, December 09, 2008

Sources are reporting that President-elect Barack Obama’s appointee for US ambassador to the United Nations Dr. Susan Rice, after a visit to the State Department headquarters, plans to install her own transition team, independent of incoming Secretary of State Sen. Hillary Clinton’s, in the department.

Obama’s plans to promote the post to a cabinet level position have been seen primarily as a symbolic move to improve relations with the international community after 8 years of Bush Administration unilateralism. Yet the former Assistant Secretary of State under the Clinton Administration seems to want to assert herself in the State Department, even if it means stepping on Sen. Clinton’s toes.

Dr. Rice has publicly pressed Congress to authorize the use of military force in Darfur. Just how much influence she will have in the Obama Administration remains to be seen, but as a top adviser for the Obama campaign she is liable to have his ear on most foreign policy matters.

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