Well, it’s official — Clinton will be brought on for State, Gates will be retained, and Jim Jones will be the national security adviser. Not much more for me to comment, other than this encouraging report in the New York Times:
Yet all three of his choices — Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton as the rival turned secretary of state; Gen. James L. Jones, the former NATO commander, as national security adviser, and Robert M. Gates, the current and future defense secretary — have embraced a sweeping shift of priorities and resources in the national security arena.
The shift would create a greatly expanded corps of diplomats and aid workers that, in the vision of the incoming Obama administration, would be engaged in projects around the world aimed at preventing conflicts and rebuilding failed states. However, it is unclear whether the financing would be shifted from the Pentagon; Mr. Obama has also committed to increasing the number of American combat troops. Whether they can make the change — one that Mr. Obama started talking about in the summer of 2007, when his candidacy was a long shot at best — “will be the great foreign policy experiment of the Obama presidency,” one of his senior advisers said recently.
The adviser, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak publicly, said the three have all embraced “a rebalancing of America’s national security portfolio” after a huge investment in new combat capabilities during the Bush years.
Even during the campaign, Obama never made overtly political moves — he opposed the gas tax holiday, he didn’t tap Hilary for VP — so it’s not really surprising that the so-called “team of rivals” represents far more comity than dissonance. This will surely also be encouraging to progressives who have expressed some concern that Obama was likely to eschew liberal internationalism entirely.