The Top Unmentioned Obama Replacement: Robert Mueller

A slew of second-term cabinet speculation articles have come out (National Journal, first posted before the election, and NYT and USAT today).

And while they seem to indicate Jack Lew is likely to replace TurboTaxTimmeh Geithner and Secretary of State will be the subject of active speculation for some time (with intriguing speculation that Howard Berman, who lost to Brad Sherman in CA, might be under consideration), one key role–albeit not of cabinet level–is missing:

FBI Director.

After all, Robert Mueller is already 2 years beyond his sell by date; Obama extended his term to get past the election (he said). And regardless of rank, the FBI Director is one of the most important figures in the increasingly powerful surveillance state.

And there have been some very troubling names mentioned in discussions to replace him, including NYPD’s Ray Kelly, who would really be the second incarnation of J Edgar Hoover’s abusive power. There had been speculation that Patrick Fitzgerald wanted the job, but his decision to join Skadden Arps just before the election suggests he knew he wasn’t going to get that job.

Particularly given Eric Holder’s apparent increasing doubt that he’ll stick around, we have the possibility of seeing something worse–all the capitulation we got from Holder in the first term, plus and FBI Director who has none of the claimed measure of Mueller (though I’ve always had my doubts about those claims).

A new FBI Director (which is guaranteed), particularly if it came with a new Attorney General, could either set a dramatic new course or harden in the old course. And I fear it is most likely to be the latter.

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13 Responses to The Top Unmentioned Obama Replacement: Robert Mueller

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Emptywheel Twitterverse
bmaz @BradMossEsq And thank god he did, else this enlightenment would never had happened. Need a million more Snowdens!!
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bmaz @etuckerAP how many days has jury been out now? Seems like forever.
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bmaz @BradMossEsq @jasonleopold No evidence is contrary!
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JimWhiteGNV @PhilPerspective Not sure, but Foley stupidly extended him recently. @bmaz
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JimWhiteGNV @bmaz Wait. I thought you wanted us to hire Charlie Weis. Make up your mind.
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emptywheel RT @MikeScarcella: Obama-appointed judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers assigned to Twitter transparency suit http://t.co/vFj9PkdEL0 Earlier: http:…
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emptywheel @normative Yeah but I think that is NOT true of Bob Litt. & to some degree I think Comey's been sent out as last IC guy w/cred @mattblaze
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bmaz FISCR Used an Outdated Version of EO 12333 to Rule Protect America Act Legal https://t.co/RYRymlFhJo
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bmaz @JimWhiteGNV cause Gators can't hire Lane Kiffen until Bama season over!
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emptywheel @mattblaze Plus, who the hell is advising him he can too have Golden Keys to our front doors? Who's advising him? That non-tech Cyber guy?
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emptywheel @mattblaze I would normally say that but if he were getting good staff work they wouldn't have trotted him out w/easily debunked examples.
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emptywheel @mattblaze Also, Comey has to create something that will counterweigh real economic imperative to rebuild trust among cloud cos.
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