This means that current counsel, Gregory Craig, must be on his way out the door. Strangely, however, the New York Times ran a piece just two days ago in which Craig tried to dismiss rumors that he'd be leaving, saying that he wasn't planning to go anywhere. But does Obama have other plans? Why would Obama want to get rid of Craig?
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According to the New York Times piece, Craig has been a pivotal figure in the White House's Guantanamo Bay, interrogation and detention policies. Apparently these contentious policies have created friction inside the White House and many have speculated that Craig might be on his way out:
According to Beck, Robert Bauer is likely to fill the White House counsel position once Craig is out. Robert "Bob" Bauer has a long professional career working with Obama. Bauer chairs the political law group Perkins Coie and has served in Obama's presidential campaign, the Democratic National Committee and currently serves as the top lawyer for Obama's Organizing for America. Bauer also served as counsel to the Democratic Leadership during the trial of President Clinton in 1999. So far this year, Obama for America has paid Perkins Coie $600,000 and over $1 million since last October.
Mr. Craig said he had no plans to leave, and White House officials said the president still had faith in him. But colleagues and Democrats close to the White House said they expected him to move on around the end of the year, and they have been talking about possible replacements. Whether Mr. Craig leaves or not, the discussion of his fate has grown so persistent and the situation so awkward that one supporter calls it “the Greg Craig watch.”It is a classic and not particularly savory Washington story. When an administration stumbles, whispers begin and fingers point in search of someone to blame. At a certain point, assumptions can become self-fulfilling, and an official in the cross hairs finds it harder to do the job. In Mr. Craig’s case, friends said he was unfairly being made a scapegoat for decisions supported across the administration.
Bob Bauer has also testified in the investigation of former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich on Obama's behalf. In addition, Bauer serves as Barack Obama's personal representative in a number of legal matters, including defending the president against legal challenges to his "natural born" citizenship status. Bauer has also represented the embattled ACORN group on more than one occasion:
So if Beck's source is right, is Obama just giving another one of his friends a job in the White House? Or is there another motive in bringing Anita Dunn's husband on board? Is the Obama White House planning to use Craig as a scapegoat for its failing policies in keeping America safe?
We'll keep an eye on this one as it develops....