Decoding the Administration’s Power and Rice shuffles
The President is doing the second term shuffle with one “new” hire (Samantha Power as U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations) and one existing Administration member (Susan Rice) being recycled from the UN gig into the national security advisor’s role.
Rice is replacing Tom Donilon, the suspected source of critical (and yet mysteriously non-persecuted) national security leaks to the media. For the President, Rice’s desk change is 1) an attempt to burnish her resume for future government/lobbying work while 2) rewarding her loyalty for propagating the Administration’s post-Benghazi disinformation campaign, and 3) an obvious attempt to again snub Republicans.
And yet the President couldn’t bear the burden of nominating Rice for a position which requires a confirmation hearing as Rice—and perhaps Obama—could have been toast.
Power, on the other hand, is most famous for calling Hillary Clinton a monster during the 2008 presidential campaign. Team of non-rivals and all that.
It’s unlikely either Rice or Power will carry much weight within the Administration as they are both “prominent advocates of liberal interventionism, a foreign-policy credo that calls for the United States to act aggressively to defend human rights – by military means, if necessary.”
Decoded, this means their ideas may be honored if they advocate for things like the Navy delivering bottled water after an Indonesian earthquake, but not so much the use of U.S. troops for the civil war in Syria. In the second example, the President’s lead from behind philosophy will rule the day.
Or in other words, meet the new boss, same as the old boss.