Monday, November 24, 2008

A Progressive in the Cabinet!

I have been unabashedly unimpressed with many of the Clinton folks now appointed to work for Obama, but this morning the Obama appointed Melody Barnes to head the Domestic Policy Council. She is a front and center progressive who has worked for Ted Kennedy (the lion of the Senate and a lion for progressives) on the Judiciary committee. She has also worked for the Center for American Progress for the last few years. An African-American woman, she will coordinate the mega-board of the Cabinet secretaries of Health and Human Services, Justice, Labor, Education, Housing and Urban Development, Commerce, Energy, Treasury, Agriculture, Transportation, Interior and Veterans Affairs. Basically, she'll be domestic policy czar. More on Barnes. She also penned an essay at the Washington Post, "What a Progressive President Might Say." Here is part of what she said:

Here at home there is urgent work to do to fight the historically high -- and growing -- gap between our richest and poorest citizens. While the mean income of households on the low end of the income spectrum -- the bottom 20 percent -- is just $10,655 a year, the income of the top twenty percent of households averages almost $160,000. That's 15 times as much. At the same time, according to the latest census figures, the middle class, beset with stagnant wages and mountainous debts, is shrinking. The sad fact is that one of our most cherished values as a society, namely equality of opportunity, is fading as a reality for far too many people...

Here is a small interview with her on C-SPAN:

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