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Liberals Split on Gates

So far, liberals have nodded in agreement with most of President-elect Obama’s appointments. But the retention of Robert Gates as the Secretary of Defense is a source of some friction. Chris Bowers at Open Left makes the case against Gates: “If there was one message that Obama ran on loudly, clearly, and indisputably, it is that he was going to bring ‘change’ to Washington, D.C. If Gates were kept on as Secretary of Defense, it apparently would also mean that all of his top advisors would also stay on... Keeping the same guy and all of his advisors at the behest of old establishment types is about as far from change as possible.” Another liberal commentator, Steve Clemons at The Washington Note, says he originally opposed Gates, but has come around, citing Gates’ support for an Iran-U.S. dialogue, a re-thinking of our Afghanistan strategy, and a push for Israel-Palestine peace.