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US Politics

Obama’s VP / The New Chief of Staff a Clue

Hillary Clinton will not be Vice President if Obama wins the Presidency and that should come as no surprise

An inspired appointment 

The announcement by the Obama campaign of the appointment of the former Clinton Presidential campaign manager Patti Solis Doyle to the position of Chief of Staff to the nominee’s future Vice Presidential candidate can mean only one thing.

Hillary Clinton will not be Vice President if Obama wins the Presidency. That should come as no surprise. However the Obama campaign obviously values the capability and potential of Patti Doyle for very sound reasons. The answer is simple. They know her and they know her standards. Apart from anything else, she knows all about the White House and how it functions. And perhaps a lot more about the Clintons.  She also feels betrayed by Clinton. With this stunning appointment the Obama campaign in one stroke of the pen, has resurrected her career. Big time. That will pay off in commitment.

They know what really happened 

Axelrod and Obama would also have fairly strong views about the attitudes of the others involved in her sidelining and an appreciation of the sequence of events involved. They obviously respect her track record and value her eight years of White House experience. As will Obama’s new VP. In the meantime Ms Doyle will be more than capable of  managing the affairs of Obama’s VP candidate during the general election campaign.

 Proven performance

A daughter of illegal immigrants, this latino lady in common with Obama and David Axelrod also hails from Chicago. After graduating with a BA from Northwestern University, Ms Doyle first worked in Chicago local mayoral politics before taking up position with Bill Clinton’s Presidential campaign working out of Arkansas as a scheduler in 1991. 

When the Clintons transferred to the White House, Patti was promoted to managing Hillary Rodham Clinton’s program in her duties as the First Lady of the United States. She carried out this senior management role for the full eight year term of the Clinton Presidency.  According to the Washington Post when Clinton’s early 2000 New York Senate campaign began to falter, Clinton bought in Doyle to resurrect and manage what turned out to be a successful campaign resulting in her election to the US Senate.

As a very experienced political professional Patti Doyle is quite a catch.  Even more significant is that she was the only senior Clinton campaign team member of interest to Obama. That says something. Also intriguing is her early appointment as the Obama VP’s Chief of staff in advance of the announcement of Senator Obama’s running mate.  As an employee of the Obama organisation Doyle does not need to know who her future boss will be just yet. Though I am sure she understands who it won’t be,  in view of the fact she has been given this position.

The only person who would know the name of Obama’s likely running mate at this stage is Obama. No one else.  Not even the highest echelon Democratic Party officials. Only the nominee can select a running mate. Not even the Obama vetting committee. They are expected to make inquiries and information available about each candidate and possibly a recommendation, but the final decision rests with the nominee – Senator Obama.

 Intellligent timing

The question remains, why would a female Chief of Staff be appointed in advance of an announcement of a VP running mate?.  I believe it was simply to allow as much time as possible to soften the blow for Clinton supporters, and the time necessary for them to accept the reality that Clinton will not be Obama’s running mate.

Clinton herself, would have been told this among other things, in the private meeting she had with Obama two days prior to her final speech. Now she has $20 million of campaign debt repayment reasons to cooperate with the Obama campaign. Notice and acceptance of Doyle’s appointment would have been signed off by all short listed candidates intending to stay in the race, before her appointment was announced publicly.

I believe Barack would have his preferred list of key appointments made out and is awaiting the results of enquiries and deliberations from his vetting crew. It is possible that Patti Solis Doyle’s appointment could signal that America will get another chance to elect a Democrat woman to the Office of Vice President, the first since the Mondale / Ferraro ticket lost to Reagan / Geo H W Bush in 1984.

My choice for Barack’s Vice Presidential running mate is Kathleen Sebelius – the Democrat Governor of the Republican State of Kansas . An outstanding personal and political history.  Who do you think Barack will choose?

Governor Kathleen Sebelius endorsing Senator Obama in Eldorado Kansas January 29th 2008 (9 min)

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