Sunday, January 04, 2009

Bill Richardson Out Of Obama Cabinet

Another one bites the dust...

New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson, tapped in December by President-elect Barack Obama to serve as secretary of Commerce, has withdrawn his name for the position, citing a pending investigation into a company that has done business with his state.

"Let me say unequivocally that I and my Administration have acted properly in all matters and that this investigation will bear out that fact," he said Sunday in a report by NBC News' Andrea Mitchell. "But I have concluded that the ongoing investigation also would have forced an untenable delay in the confirmation process."


What Richardson is accused of is a a 'pay to play scheme' involving a California company that contributed to Richardson's campaign and just happened to wind up with a no-bid and very lucrative New Mexico state contract.

Richardson, Blago, Rezco, Jefferson, Dodd, Jesse Jackson Jr.....I wonder...can we call it a 'culture of corruption' yet?

As you know, Hispanics wanted their piece of the action for supporting Obama during the general election and were demanding a minimum of three cabinet seats. With Richardson out, the only one they've gotten so far is Ken Salazar, who penciled in to become Secretary of the Interior.

Richardson, of course is a mediocrity with a remarkably undistinguished record as a congressman, governor, and a Secretary of Energy and UN Ambassador during the Clinton years. And as the American people were able to observe during the debates, he's not exactly the sharpest tool in the shed.However,he did help Obama by turning on the Clintons and helping to deliver the Chicano vote, so this was his reward.

It will be interesting to see if Obama picks another Hispanic for the job. Aside from the opportunity to make lucrative personal contacts in business, the Secretary of Commerce overseas the upcoming census, a gig with a great deal of political clout in determing the apportionment of congressional seats, how districts are drawn, electoral votes and federal dollars.

Given the ongoing debate as to who qualifies as 'Hispanic', it's an influential post.

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