Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Surgeon General Gupta? Who's Next, Campbell Brown?!?

Another day, another puzzling Obama appointment. Yesterday, Barry appoints a guy with zero intelligence experience to head the CIA. I'm guessing this means Jack Ryan (the spy, not Barry's former opponent) was booked.

Today, in a move that shows he prolly watches CNN as much as I do, he chooses everyone's favorite TV doctor as Surgeon General.
President-elect Barack Obama has offered the job of surgeon general to Dr. Sanjay Gupta, the neurosurgeon and correspondent for CNN and CBS, according to two sources with knowledge of the situation.

Gupta has told administration officials that he wants the job, and the final vetting process is under way. He has asked for a few days to figure out the financial and logistical details of moving his family from Atlanta to Washington but is expected to accept the offer.

The offer followed a two-hour Chicago meeting in November with Obama, who said that Gupta could be the highest-profile surgeon general in history and would have an expanded role in providing health policy advice, the sources said. Gupta later spoke with Tom Daschle, Obama's White House health czar and nominee for Health and Human Services secretary, and other advisers to the president-elect.

The Michigan-born son of Indian and Pakistani parents, Gupta has always been drawn to health policy. He was a White House fellow in the late 1990s, writing speeches and crafting policy for Hillary Clinton. His appointment would give the administration a prominent official of Southwest Asian descent and a skilled television spokesman.

Gupta, who hosts "House Call" on CNN, has discussed the job offer with his bosses at CBS and CNN to make sure he could be released from his contractual obligations, the sources said.

His role as journalist and physician have sometimes overlapped. During the 2003 Iraq invasion, Gupta was embedded with a Navy unit called Devil Docs and, while covering its mission, performed brain surgery five times, the first of which was on a 2-year-old Iraqi boy.
I suppose this should shut everybody (including me) up who's been on Obama's case about appointing flunkies and Clinton retreads. Gupta, if nothing else, represents change. But damn, if we're scouring the cable news world for appointees, why stop there?!?
Secretary of Defense : Bill O'Reilly - Seriously, he might have a brain full of cream cheese, but I doubt he'd back down from any challenger. Bring it on, Pinhead!

Chief of STAFF!!! : Julie Banderas - I'm just sayin'.

Press Secretary : Jamaal Simmons - You know dude was angling for this job all year long. Give him a run.

Secretary Of Commerce : Ali Velshi - Dude knows about as much about the economy as I do, but he rocks some nice suits.

Secretary of Homeland Security : Keith Olbermann - See O'Reilly.

Director of National Intelligence : Anderson Cooper - I don't even know what this job entails, but this has to be the smartest cat on all cable TV, which isn't saying much given the numbskulls he's up against, but still. Give him a gig.

Secretary of the Interior : Erica Hill - Because Anderson Cooper needs a beard weedcarrier.

Secretaries Of Offense : The Cast Of Fox And Friends - What a deplorable collection of d-bags. I know this ain't technically a real gig, but what a better way to clear out room?
Seriously, I don't know how to feel about this one. I'd imagine there are literally thousands of more qualified candidates for this job out there, but Barry went the celebrity route which may or may not be a good idea. I suppose I could reprise my "where the black folks at?" argument here (Clinton had Elders and Satcher) but that's getting old to even my ears. If ya'll don't care, why should Barry?

Question: What do you think about Obama's appointment of Kal Penn Dr. Gupta as Surgeon General? Is there another cable news personality who deserves a gig?

Obama Wants Journalist Gupta for Surgeon General [WashPost]

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