Missing, Not Missed: CEOs in Obama Cabinet

Prez keeps Wall Street at arm's length, leans on pols, academics
By Gabriel Winant,  Newser User
Posted Feb 20, 2009 10:02 AM CST
Treasury Secretary and former Goldman Sachs chief Henry Paulson participates in a discussion about markets and climate change with "Resources for the Future" in Washington, Monday, Jan. 12, 2009.    (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)
camera-icon View 2 more images

(Newser) – To the multitude of differences between the Obama administration and its predecessors, add the absence of corporate CEOs from Cabinet meetings. The reason is simple, reports Politico: There aren't any. Recent Wall Street-to-Washington catastrophes such as the Bush Treasury Department aren't the only reason, either. "Obama’s more academic, intellectual and political," an exec at the conservative Heritage Foundation says of the president. "He comes from a whole different tradition."

The absence is especially notable given the current economic climate, but the administration isn't operating in a vacuum, says the head of the right-leaning Business Roundtable: "They’ve been very aggressive in reaching out to the business community." And longtime Democratic operative Terry McAuliffe says of the president, "It’s not like the business community can’t get to him and give him ideas. He’s very open."