Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Cheney says Clinton just what Obama needs

President-elect Barack Obama's national security team got an endorsement from an unlikely source Monday: Vice President Dick Cheney.

In an interview with ABC News, Cheney called the team — to be headed by Secretary of State-designate Hillary Clinton, National Security adviser Gen. Jim Jones, and Secretary of Defense Robert Gates — "pretty good."

"I must say, I think it's a pretty good team," Cheney said in an interview that aired Tuesday morning. "I think the idea of keeping Gates at Defense is excellent. I think Jim Jones will be very, very effective as the national security adviser."

"While I would not have hired Sen. Clinton, I think she's tough," he also said of Obama's choice for secretary of state. "She's smart, she works very hard and she may turn out to be just what President Obama needs."

The comments come a day after Arizona Sen. John McCain also offered kind words for Obama's national security team, saying it was a group of people he may have chosen himself.

Cheney is praising Obama's new national security team.
Cheney is praising Obama's new national security team.

But the seeming praise from high-profile Republicans over Obama's national security team could further rile members of the liberal wing of the Democratic Party — the demographic that strongly supported Obama's candidacy throughout the prolonged Democratic primaries.

"Some on the left say, 'Wait a minute — we voted for change,'" CNN Senior Political Analyst Bill Schneider said.
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