Obama asks for patience on Cabinet makeup

Jan. 14, 2013 at 3:09 PM
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WASHINGTON, Jan. 14 (UPI) -- Don't judge the breadth of his second-term Cabinet's diversity by the nominations of just four people, Obama urged Monday.

Concern has been raised about how diverse Obama's Cabinet during the second term will be, based on his picks of four white men for secretaries of State, Defense and Treasury -- Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass.; former Sen. Chuck Hagel, R-Neb., and John Lew, currently Obama's chief of staff -- along with CIA director nominee John Brennan.

"I'm very proud that in the first four years, we had as diverse, if not a more diverse, a White House and a Cabinet than any in history," Obama said during the last news conference of his first term. "And I intended to continue that, because it turns out when you look for the very best people, given the incredible diversity of this country, you're going to end up with a diverse staff and a diverse -- a diverse team, and that very diversity helps to create more effective policymaking, and better decisionmaking for me, because it brings different perspectives to the table."

During his first term, Obama said, the key players on his major domestic initiative, healthcare reform or foreign policy were women.

"My two appointments to the Supreme Court were women," Obama said. "And 50 percent of my White House staff were women."

He asked folks not to judge until "they've seen all my appointments."

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