Is The Obama Administration Heading For A Reshuffle?
Since the election of Scott Brown to take over the Senate seat of Teddy Kennedy, the tone has sharply changed in Washington; especially the rhetoric coming from the White House. President Obama is now using a more aggressive almost populist language such as denouncing the “fat cats” of Wall Street, and vehemently attacking the Supreme Court’s decision to unleash the full blast of corporate money, which could potentially be the final nail in the coffin of our electoral system.
It seems that most Democrats, at least on the left, are welcoming the drastic change in the President’s discourse. However, a critical question remains unanswered: Will President Obama act on his renewed combativeness and, by doing so get back his political mojo?
The art of politics, not unlike the art of war, requires ruthlessness, some time diplomacy but always an intense power to focus on everyone else next moves. Barack Obama displayed all those qualities, and than some, during his 2008 masterful Presidential campaign, but somehow since he became President his unstoppable edge seems less sharp. Sharpness, and the ability to switch gear are the qualities President Obama and the Democrats should rely on now. In the balance is not only the 2010 elections, but also a better chance for the President to be reelected in 2012.
This photograph of the President (from the official White House site) was taken before his inauguration speech January 20TH 2009. The President had a quick reflective moment before accepting the enormity of his task at hand. As a “thinking man”, President Obama was a good change from the impulsive George W. Bush, but what the former President had was the ability to be incredibly stubborn, blunt and forceful when he wanted something done. In other words, President Obama should think less and act more otherwise his first term will be the only one. Action, in this case, could translate into a fairly substantial reshuffle within the Obama administration not only in term of people, but also in regard to key domestic policies.
Up to a couple of weeks ago, the position of Chairman of the Federal Reserve seemed secured for Ben Bernanke. But now, with his term up and the anger from Americans towards financial institutions on the rise again, an easy confirmation is less likely. Democrats from the left such as Senator Boxer and Senator Feingold are expressing a strong frustration over Bernanke’s refusal to completely open the books on the 2008 giant bailout of companies such as AIG. Another man could see his current position in jeopardy: Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner. Geithner is perceived, for very good reasons, by America’s public opinion as someone in bed with Wall Street.
Three days ago, a giant of the economic world made a comeback in the forefront of the political scene. It is Paul Volker, and he could replace, on a very short notice, either Ben Bernanke or Tim Geithner. Another possible contender for Geithner’s job could be a woman of great intelligence, integrity and deep knowledge of finance: Her name is Elizabeth Warren, and she has quite an expertise on the giant financial swindle which took place in the last few months of the Bush administration, known by the name TARP. Midterm reshuffles are common in Americans politics; in the case of the Obama administration it could happen before that.