Obama Taps Daschle for Cabinet

Policy working groups also announced

President-elect Barack Obama has tapped former Senate majority leader Tom Daschle as his nominees for Secretary of Health and Human Services, NBC News reported on Wednesday.

Daschle, a former senator from South Dakota, is currently an advisor to the law firm of Alston and Bird, where he provides strategic advice on public policy issues such as climate change, energy, health care, trade, financial services, and telecommunications, according to a news release.

In 2007, he joined with former Majority Leaders George Mitchell, Bob Dole, and Howard Baker to create the Bipartisan Policy Center, an organization dedicated to finding common ground on public policy challenges. Daschle is also co-chair of the ONE Vote ’08 Campaign, along with former Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, to address health and poverty in the developing world, according to the release.

Daschle was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1978, and served eight years. In 1986, Daschle was elected to the U.S. Senate. Two years later, he became the first Co-Chairman of the Senate Democratic Policy Committee and the first South Dakotan to be elected to a leadership position in the U.S. Congress, according to the news release.  In 1994, Daschle was elected by his colleagues as their Democratic Leader. Daschle is one of the longest-serving Senate Democratic Leaders in history and the only one to serve twice as both Majority and Minority Leader.

In addition to the Daschle announcement, the Obama-Biden transition team announced leaders for a series of policy working groups for the transition, which will focus on developing policy proposals and plans from the Obama campaign for action during the administration. The groups will focus on the economy, education, energy and environment, health care, immigration, national security, and technology, innovation and government reform.

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