With the possible exception of Redskins-Monday-Morning-Quarterbacking and the Veep stakes, few DC parlor games attract more interest than guessing who will fill a new president's cabinet. Towards that end, we'll be feeding the frenzy (chumming the waters?) these next few weeks by passing along pundit speculation; paying special attention to the position of Energy Secretary. From a Washington Post online chat earlier today, Energy Wire's Steve Mufson weighed in.Click here for more NNN coverage on who will be in the Obama Cabinet.
At the Energy Department, a lot of people have mentioned to me Gov. Ed Rendell from Pennsylvania. I’m not sure why he would want to do that, but there it is. The department mostly handles nuclear weapons and waste issues. The energy policy bit is smaller and largely about setting appliance standards. One new task it will have: Promoting carbon capture and storage so that coal plants won’t emit huge amounts of greenhouse gases. That might create a desire for an expert in that area to be deputy secretary, maybe someone like Ernie Moniz at MIT. Skill in helping negotiate cap and trade might be a plus.
Another possibility might be a national security type or Republican businessman. Retired Gen. David Jones has done a lot of work with the Chamber of Commerce promoting energy plans. [Edit: Mufson likely was referring to Retired Gen. James Jones.] FedEx ceo Fred Smith has also been active on energy issues.