Obama’s disregard for experience and humility

Obama’s disregard for experience and humility

I’ll admit, I was drawn into this article on President Obama by Norm Ornstein’s odd assertion that Obama has enforced “stiff restrictions on lobbyists entering the administration.” Nobody should write something like that without noting that the Obama administration has hired at least 100 ex-lobbyists, including a former Goldman Sachs lobbyist as chief of staff at Treasury.

But the rest Ornstein’s article is very revealing (Ornstein is a scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, where I serve as a fellow). As I read the piece, Obama didn’t put much stake in experience when staffing his administration:

The initial White House staff structure did not include anyone in a prominent position who knew the executive branch intimately—knew which positions among the political appointees were important for the president’s policy objectives and needed to be filled quickly by experts or managers …

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