There have been a series of items of note this past week or so. Not all connected, but with transition as the common theme:
Federal Times’ July 14th issue (hard copy, not on-line) had several pieces on the transition at Defense. One article by John Bennett: “Experts: Gates, Young, Vickers May Survive the Transition,” speculated on whether a series of high-level Defense officials who have bipartisan appeal will survive the transition. The officials include: Secretary Robert Gates, Deputy Secretary Gordon England, Dep. Undersecretary for Acqusition John Young, and Asst. Secretary for special operations Michael Vickers. However, later in the same issue, an interview with Senator Obama quotes him as saying: “I do think Secretary Gates has brought a level of realism and professionalism . . . But whether that means that he continue in that position, or would even want to, I with I have a little more work to do before I have to make those decisions.”
In the following week’s issue of Federal Times (July 20), an Op-Ed by Steven Katz reviewed the successes and challenges of the management agendas of the past two administration, and speculated on the management priorities of either Senators McCain or Obama. He observes: “They instinctively want to know the impact of federal agencies and programs on their constituents, and this could lead to a presidency where a nation of constituents becomes a priority in how agencies are managed.”
The Partnership for Public Service has posted a couple items of interest. First, it summarized a forum it co-sponsored with Young Government Leaders on “surviving a presidential transition,” at which Dr. Martha Kumar and I were invited speakers. And second, it helpfully posted draft party platform language on improving government performance.
And finally for today, I was invited to post short book reviews on books related to the presidential transition on an interesting website that was new to me: FlashlightWorthy.com . This site is an aggregation of book recommendations by various readers. Here’s what I posted on transition books! If you’ve got favorite books you’d like to share, here’s the place to do it.