A June 23 Newsweek article notes that three senators are interested in the Secretary of State position in an Obama administration: John Kerry, Christopher Dodd, and Joe Biden.
All serve on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Biden as Chairman.

Rarely have we seen more qualified candidates, and ones with such language skills. Kerry speaks fluent French, Dodd speaks fluent Spanish, and Biden speaks effluent English.

homer   www.altara.blogspot.com

Tags: Biden, Dodd, Kerry, languages, secretary of state (all tags)




Bunnatine Greenhouse for Sec. of Defense!

by Alice Marshall 2008-06-23 10:49AM | 0 recs

I see what you did there on Biden.  Seriously though, I think Kerry would be the best choice of those three.

by libertyleft 2008-06-23 10:56AM | 0 recs

Edwards as Solicitor General, not Attorney General. He's best arguing cases as he once did, not prosecuting them. Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State.

by Lakrosse 2008-06-23 11:23AM | 0 recs

We need Clinton in the Senate... but is there anyway we can give Harrry Reid a Cabinet position? You know, just to get him outta the way.

by JDF 2008-06-23 03:40PM | 0 recs
Clinton, supreme court

the supreme court needs another woman, Hillary Clinton would be perfect.

by Alice Marshall 2008-06-23 11:33AM | 0 recs
Re: Clinton, supreme court

I agree almost down the line, except for her opinion on the death penalty.  She is strongly for.  I don't think that would be a good thing for the court.

by mady 2008-06-23 11:42AM | 0 recs
Clinton for President (in 2016)

by activatedbybush 2008-06-23 11:58AM | 0 recs
Re: Clinton, supreme court

No way. She is too old, we  need someone like Alito who is younger and will be there for a long time. No one over 55 I say.

by Cheebs 2008-06-23 12:48PM | 0 recs
Re: Clinton, supreme court

when are they going to announce that Sen. Webb is the VP running mate.

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-23 02:32PM | 0 recs

VERY unlikely.  A SCOTUS appointee should have loads of judicial experience and constitutional scholarship on their resume.

If you want a woman, these are some better than decent choices:

*Chief Justice Leah Ward Sears, Georgia Supreme Court

http://www.gasupreme.us/justices_bios.ph p

*Hon. Sonia Sotomayor, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

http://www.fjc.gov/servlet/tGetInfo?jid= 2243

*Hon. Kim McLane Wardlaw, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit

http://www.fjc.gov/servlet/tGetInfo?jid= 2501

*Dean Elena Kagan, Harvard Law School


by fogiv 2008-06-23 11:50AM | 0 recs

Opps, sorry.  Supposed to be a response to Alice Marshall's post.

by fogiv 2008-06-23 11:52AM | 0 recs

Why should judicial experience be a prerequisite?  It never used to be, and if it had been Earl Warren never would have been appointed.  In fact, I think adding someone with electoral experience would be a great thing for the Court.  

As to your list, I'd prefer Hillary to Wardlaw (ironicallyl, a close friend of the CLintons) or Sotomayor, both of whom are a bit too centrist legally speaking for my taste.  Kagan would be fantastic.  I don't know anything about Sears' judicial philosophy.    

by HSTruman 2008-06-23 12:45PM | 0 recs

Because you are now looking at the realities of an Obama presidency. Dude, folks tried to tell ya. Obama folks don't want Sen. Clinton.

Wake up and smell the expresso.

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-23 02:35PM | 0 recs

What a treasure Warren turned out to be, eh?  Let's not forget that Eisenhower thought he'd be a conservative, and was largly hoping to defuse Warren's presidential aspirations with the appointment (he was Republican Dewey's running mate in '48).  Ike was only partitally successful.  Oops.

Anyhoo, Warren also served as a District Attorney, California AG, and as Governor of same before his SCOTUS appointment.  As threadbare as that may be, Hillary's judicial experience still appears weaker on it's face (Wal Mart/Rose Law for cryin' out loud).  Because she has no expertise in constitutional law and has never served on any bench, she's a hard sell (even minus the baggage), though I'm inclined to think the Senate might make an easier confirmation for one of their own.    

Obviously there are no prerequisites.  I don't think judicial experience should be the only qualification, but certainly foremost among them.  Aint nuttin' wrong with at least a little constitutional scholarship.  That said, I also agree with the notion that the high court should be leavened with a politician or two.

Gov. Granholm might be be a good choice in this vein.

Granholm began her career in public service as a clerk for U.S. Judge Damon Keith on the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals.  In 1990, Granholm became a federal prosecutor in Detroit, where she maintained a 98 percent conviction rate.  In 1994, Granholm was appointed Wayne County corporation counsel.  She worked to reduce taxpayer-funded lawsuit payouts by 87 percent.  Elected Michigan's first female attorney general in 1998, Granholm continued her fight to protect Michigan's citizens and consumers.  She established the state's first high-tech crime unit to prosecute Internet crimes.

Now, it's not that I oppose HRC on the court per se. Clinton certainly has political and legal experience that would diversify the Court.  I just think her nominiation VERY unlikely (and not just for lack of judicial experience).  

Other factors:


We probably want to shoot for someone who'll be on the Court 20-30 years.  HRC would be at least 61 the first time she punches a SCOTUS timecard.  Not too old, but close.


Her nomination would likely ignite a firestorm of Republican opposition.  I doubt Obama will willingly seek to embroil his fledgling administration in the umpteenth rehashing of the 90s scandals (e.g. Whitewater, Travelgate, etc.)

by fogiv 2008-06-23 02:38PM | 0 recs

Thanks for fleshing out your views.  I agree she's not a likely choice, but I would nonetheless like to see someone with electoral experience appointed.  I think granholm would be an interesting choice.  Napolitano and Patrick would also be good picks who have significant legal backgrounds along with their political experience.  If memorsy serves, the latter was US attorney for Arizona and Patrick headed up the civil rights division at main justice in the Clinton administration.  

by HSTruman 2008-06-23 02:44PM | 0 recs

I thought Patrick would be a shoe-in, and aligns with Obama on so many levels.   Hadn't considered Napolitano.

by fogiv 2008-06-23 03:01PM | 0 recs

Why do you feel they should have loads of judicial experience?

Historically speaking it has not been a litmus tests for who gets the nod and I don't necessarily think it should be.

Speaking of Supreme Court Justices, and this is getting waaaay ahead of ourselves, but how do you all feel about Obama becoming the second President to serve on the Supreme Court after being President.

by JDF 2008-06-23 03:43PM | 0 recs

Well, I don't necessarily.  I clarified my position somewhat with this response above.

To quote, uh, myself:

Obviously there are no prerequisites.  I don't think judicial experience should be the only qualification, but certainly foremost among them.  Aint nuttin' wrong with at least a little constitutional scholarship.  That said, I also agree with the notion that the high court should be leavened with a politician or two.

Heh.  Never done that before.  :)

Anyway, you're right:  experience isn't always the litmus test for a SCOTUS selection, historically speaking.  We need only consider Justices Warren and Rehnquist to see that.

The problem, as I see it, with out-and-out political appointees (i.e.  judges selected to help shape policy) is that it's far more difficult to achieve senate confirmation in such cases.  Look what happened when Bush selected Harriet Miers.  Obvious cronyism.  That horse died before they got it to the track.  They turned to experience with Alito and Roberts--and succeeded.  

I don't think we should cede the moral highground with appointments that are too blatantly political.  It would be begging the Repubs to argue that Dems seek only power, not a court faithfully subservient to the law.  Plus, purely political appointments don't fit well with Obama's "change Washington" theme.  

I hope Obama strives to appoint judges who, via judicial experience, bring diligence and legitimate interpretative skill to their task.  Obviously, we'll want them to help shape and support progressive policy.  Eh, I'm not articulating this very well, but I think a political appointee, rightly or wrongly, sends the message that they don't operate independently from politics.  We're supposed to be better than that.  Still, I'm okay with a few ringers, if we could swing it.  :)

Oh, Obama on the SCOTUS after two terms as POTUS would be amazing.  He hasn't sat a bench, but he clearly knows his way around Constitutional law.  

by fogiv 2008-06-23 08:22PM | 0 recs
I see what you did there.

Clever.  Any of them would make great Sec of State.

by BishopRook 2008-06-23 12:21PM | 0 recs

- As much as I may miss them in the Senate, I'd be happy with any one of them as Sec. of State.

  • Wes Clark for Defense?
  • John Edwards for Attorney General.
  • Clinton for Senate Majority Leader.
  • Secretary of Veteran Affairs: Webb (if he wants it)

The rest really are everywhere - I think that Commerce and Energy are going to be biggies and that Richardson doesn't not want his old job back.

by ejintx 2008-06-23 12:36PM | 0 recs
Dodd would make a better majority leader

Clinton has not been a champion of the bill of rights

by Alice Marshall 2008-06-23 01:44PM | 0 recs
Re: Dodd would make a better majority leader

You tell them Alice.

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-23 02:36PM | 0 recs
Re: Dodd would make a better majority leader

That was snark Alice.

by 12 dogs and a blog 2008-06-23 02:36PM | 0 recs

ol' Joe was not so good on MTP.

Edwards should not be AG.  He has no experience as a prosecutor.

by JJE 2008-06-23 12:43PM | 0 recs
Re: Edwards

I think Edwards should be the Obama Administration's  coordinator of anti-poverty efforts--either from a position like Secretary of Labor, HHS, or HUD, or in a new cabinet-level "czar" job.

by slvn 2008-06-24 04:01AM | 0 recs


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