What do you call three lobbyists and a Daschle pal? Obama's short list 

Howard Fineman, citing "a very highly placed administration source," reports on the short list for White House chief of staff. The names are Peter Rouse, Bill Daley, Tom Daschle, and Tom Vilsack.

Aside from Rouse, those men are all K Street veterans -- a fact that hardly fits Obama's anti-rhetoric talk.

Daley, in addition to being a Wall Street banker and sitting on the board of Boeing, was a lobbyist for Fannie Mae.

Tom Vilsack, when tapped by Obama for Agriculture Secretary, was a lobbyist for the National Education Association. Also, as I've reported, he has a "very, very close friend" and donor in Des Moines lobbyist Jerry Crawford.

Daschle, while not registered as a lobbyist, is a paid consultant for a lobbying firm (he's on his second K Street firm now), and he has represented health-care companies -- taking their money even while advising Obama on health-care overhaul. He also gave speeches (at "five-figure sums" according to Time) for GE Healthcare, Daschle's wife Linda is a lobbyist for the likes of GE and Boeing.

Rouse wasn't a lobbyist -- or even an unofficial one like Daschle -- but he was a top aide to Daschle.

But those lobbyists, Obama said, "they're not going to work in my White House"!

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Timothy P. Carney

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