COMPETENCE: Most of Obama’s Top Appointees Are Not in Place. “Of more than 500 senior policymaking positions requiring Senate confirmation, just 43 percent have been filled so far — a reflection of a White House that grew more cautious after several nominations blew up last spring, a Senate that is intensively investigating nominees and a legislative agenda that has consumed both. The sluggish pace has kept Mr. Obama from having his own people enacting programs central to his mission. He is trying to fix the financial markets but does not have an assistant treasury secretary for financial markets. He is spending more money on transportation than anyone since Dwight D. Eisenhower but does not have his own inspector general watching how the dollars are used. He is fighting two wars but does not have an Army secretary.”
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