Clinton Picks Obama Veterans to White House Transition Team

The Democratic Presidential candidate, Hilary Clinton is looking to put in some groundwork for her presidency in case she emerges victorious in the elections in November. This became apparent when she announced names for her transition team, which comprised of several veterans of President Barack Obama’s administration. US Senator from Colorado and a former interior secretary, Ken Salazar will be leading a team of four co-chairs, which includes Tom Donilon, one-time national security adviser and a former Obama aide, Neera Tanden who is now leading the progressive Center for American Progress think-tank.

The campaign also named other co-chairs, which included the director of Harvard’s Institute of Politics, Maggie Williams and Jennifer Granholm, the former Michigan governor. The announcement was made amidst news that Clinton has gained ground in opinion polls against her Republican rival Donald Trump. Trump won his party’s nomination in the previous month, but his campaign began to struggle when he made a string of controversial remarks. In a poll released on Friday, Clinton is leading Trump in the November 8th presidential elections by 5 percentage points. The average poll points indicate that she is ahead of her opponent by 6.7 points.

Clinton has served as a US senator, the former secretary of State and also the first lady. Her transition team comprises of some old names from her long tenure in Washington and some of them have also worked for the Obama administration. Tanden is Clinton’s longtime friend and adviser who worked on her Senate campaign and she also played an important role in shaping the healthcare overhaul of President Obama. When Clinton became first lady, Willian served as her transition director in 1992 and he also worked as her chief of staff in the White House when her husband, Bill Clinton was serving as president.

Ann O’Leary and Ed Meier, two policy advisers of her campaign will also move to her transition team full time. The job of chief economist will be done by the executive director of the Washington Center for Equitable Growth, Heather Boushey. He has given advice to the campaign concerning economic policy. The job of a transition team is to oversee personal appointments and assist in the development of an administrative framework during the time between the November election and the inauguration in January. This makes it easier for a new president to start implementing policy agendas.

Chris Christie, the New Jersey Governor was chosen by Trump, who has never held elected office, to serve as head of his own transition team in May. Alarmed by the New York billionaire’s unwillingness or inability to put a stop to his provocative remarks, more establishment Republicans have distanced themselves from Trump in the past few weeks. He engaged in a prolonged spat with parents of a US army captain who was a Muslim and was killed in Iraq. That garnered him a lot of criticism. He also called Obama and Clinton the ‘co-founders’ of Islamic State, which he later claimed was a sarcastic remark.