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Analysis: Biden fills his West Wing. The Cabinet will wait

November 18, 2020. Summarized by summa-bot.

The transition time between one presidential administration and the next is always frenetic, fast-paced and full of some uncertainty as campaigns try to morph into governments. Doing it during a surging pandemic and an economic downturn makes it even more important to hand things over the right way.

President Donald Trump on one hand blocking President-elect Joe Biden and on the other not seeming to do much actual presidential work is not the right way.

But while Trump's denialism makes him a sore loser so far, it may not quite be time to hit the panic button about the transition.

If Georgia's election certification deadline comes and goes (it's Friday, November 20) and the Trump administration is still grasping at straws, that will be a clear indicator that this blockade could drag out.

The Senate has data on these going back to the Carter administration and only a handful of first-term Cabinet nominations were even announced in November.

We don't yet know who will control the Senate and Sen. Mitch McConnell, supreme overlord of the Senate floor schedule, could, with help from other Republicans, make it more difficult for Biden to nominate certain secretaries -- Susan Rice and Elizabeth Warren would both be potential Cabinet officials who could face difficult confirmations in a Republican-controlled Senate.

The Partnership for Public Service charts data on nominations and determined that nominations during the Reagan administration -- Cabinet-level and lower -- took 56. 4 days as opposed to 115 days during the Trump administration.

A CRS report on presidential transitions found first-year Cabinet appointments were relatively consistent between the Carter and Obama administrations, averaging between 77 and 86 days.

The president in that group who took the longest to announce Cabinet nominees was George W.

The Partnership for Public Service's Center for Presidential Transition published a new study today that showed how the delay calling Florida for Bush in 2000 slowed his effort to get a full team in national security positions.

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