posted on November 19, 2008 12:26
Barack Obama is going to fill his Cabinet with a “Team of Rivals?” Like Lincoln. This is going to be one big mistake.
Let me get this right: Obama is going to appoint people who disagree with his policies (which they will promptly torpedo) and, when they do, he can’t fire them because he’s established that inclusion (filling his government with people who disagree with him) is a bedrock principle of good government? Because it worked for Lincoln?
I guess the theory is Lincoln won the Civil War by filling his Cabinet with rivals. But Lincoln also ended up telling his Cabinet when it came to making decisions only one vote mattered – his. And his Team of Rivals didn’t do too well making progress winning the war until Ulysses Grant won so many victories it was hard not to make him General-in-Chief of all the armies. After that it was mostly a matter of keeping the “Team of Rivals” out of Grant’s hair long enough for him to take Richmond.
Of course all this Obama-as-Lincoln hyperbole and homage to inclusiveness may just be so much political window dressing – but just in case it’s not, a fine place for Obama to practice inclusiveness would be by appointing one of his rivals (say, a pro-life Republican or Democrat) to the Supreme Court.
I’ll bet Democrats aren’t that inclusive.
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