DC's 50 Most Powerful People
Eric Cantor, Mitch McConnell top the list
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 22, 2012 4:39 PM CST
Hillary Clinton listens to a question during a press conference with Algerian Foreign Minister at the State Department in Washington, DC, on January 12, 2012.   (Getty Images)
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(Newser) – Who are the real power brokers in Washington? GQ names the top 50 in its biennial list of the most powerful people in DC—although, the magazine notes, "People with the last names Obama and Biden not included." The top five:

  • Eric Cantor: The House majority leader is definitely the Democrats' least favorite Republican; you can thank him for Washington's hyper-partisanship and inability to compromise. GQ notes that he is widely expected to follow—or even push aside—John Boehner as speaker of the House.
  • Mitch McConnell: "Even Cantor has to go through this guy eventually," thanks to his position as Senate minority leader.

  • David Plouffe: He's come a long way—from manager of Obama's long-shot campaign to the president's senior adviser—and is now the guy Obama goes to whenever he has to make a tough decision.
  • Leon Panetta: Obama convinced the semi-retired Panetta to run the CIA, then made him secretary of defense after the successful Osama bin Laden raid.
  • Hillary Clinton: She had a hand in the Arab Spring and Anwar al-Awlaki's killing, all while traveling to almost 50 countries last year. Even those who are the most loyal to Obama respect her, an aide says.
Click for the full list.