BBC Homepage World Service Education
BBC Homepagelow graphics version | feedback | help
BBC News Online
 You are in: World: Americas
Front Page 
Middle East 
South Asia 
From Our Own Correspondent 
Letter From America 
UK Politics 
Talking Point 
In Depth 

Monday, 18 December, 2000, 11:31 GMT
Bush builds White House team
Dick Cheney leaving a Washington hospital after suffering a mild heart attack
Dick Cheney: Memories of the Ford administration
President-elect Bush's White House team is taking shape - and as expected, players from his father's administration together with his own campaign advisers figure prominently.

Running mate Dick Cheney is transition chairman. Although the 59-year-old suffered a heart attack - his third - and underwent bypass surgery in 1988, he has vowed to continue in the post and fulfil his vice-presidential durties.

Formerly a high-profile member of the US administration, Mr Cheney has been out of the political limelight for much of the past decade.

Considered a moderate conservative, he is credited with masterminding the US success in the Gulf War, and appears to be widely respected within the Republican Party.

Colin Powell in Saudi Arabia
Colin Powell: Top soldier during Gulf War
When Gerald Ford named him as his White House chief of staff in 1974, the 34-year-old Mr Cheney became the youngest man in history to hold the post.

Commentators have suggested that Mr Bush would quite likely be a "hands-off" president, leaving Mr Cheney a major role in shaping policy.

Click here to read full profile

African Americans

The first appointment of the new team was retired General Colin Powell, 63, as secretary of state.

At 52 he became the youngest, and first African American chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff - America's highest ranking soldier - under the presidency of George Bush senior.

He shot to world fame in 1990 when, as chairman of the Joint Chiefs, he ran the successful campaign to oust Iraqi forces which had invaded Kuwait.

Since retiring in 1993, he has dedicated himself to improving race relations, and in his frequent lectures to black children he challenges them to fulfil their true potential.

Click here to read full profile


Shortly afterwards, Mr Bush appointed Condoleezza Rice as his national security adviser, a post that usually carries cabinet rank.

Condoleezza Rice at Republican convention
Condoleezza Rice: Russia expert
Ms Rice, aged 46, a former provost of Stanford University, also served under Mr Bush's father, when she worked on Soviet and East European issues at the National Security Council.

She has advocated the pullout of US troops from the Balkans, and criticised the Clinton administration for supporting too many foreign interventions.

However she is considered less isolationist than some leading Republicans, and persuaded Mr Bush to stop Republican moves in Congress to set a date for a US withdrawal from Bosnia and Kosovo.

Ms Rice has also guided Mr Bush towards acceptance of the controversial national missile defence system, which is intended to provide the US with an anti-ballistic missile umbrella.

Click here to read full profile

In another move seen as embracing people from a variety of racial backgrounds, President-elect Bush has appointed Hispanic lawyer Alberto Gonzales to be his top legal adviser.

High profile

The Texas Supreme Court Justice was Mr Bush's legal adviser during his first term as Texas governor.

The 45-year-old originally wanted to be a pilot but after serving in the air force for two years he changed career path and graduated from Harvard Law School.

Karen Hughes who figured prominently in the Bush campaign, dealing with the media throughout the protracted legal wrangling, has also been given a leading role.

Karen Hughes
Karen Hughes: Bush's communications expert
The Bush camp says Ms Hughes, 45, will be responsible for providing strategic advice on communications, policy and legsilative matters.

A former TV reporter, she has worked for President-elect Bush since 1994 and is a former executive director of the Republican Party.

Andrew Card, a Bush adviser who was chairman of this year's Republican convention, also gets a top post.

Andrew Card: Adviser and chief of staff
Andrew Card: Adviser and chief of staff
A former lobbyist for the motor industry, he was transportation secretary for Mr Bush's father, having earlier served in both of Ronald Reagan's administrations.

This time, the 53-year-old, who has been praised for his loyalty and ability to reach across party lines, will be chief of staff.


For the post of attorney-general, two of Mr Bush's fellow Republican governors were said to be under consideration - Marc Racicot of Montana, and Frank Keating of Oklahoma.

Mr Racicot has turned down the post leaving the way open for Frank Keating.

Because of the closeness of the election result, Mr Bush is thought to be considering appointing some Democrats to his cabinet.

Sam Nunn, chairman of the Senate armed services committee
Sam Nunn: Democrat in with a chance
Republican officials have suggested that the Democratic Senator of Georgia, Sam Nunn, chairman of the Senate armed services committee, is a contender for the post of defence secretary.

However, a former undersecretary of defence, Paul Wolfowitz, aged 56, is thought to be another likely Bush appointment.

Now dean of the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, he is a former ambassador to Indonesia.

Richard Perle, aged 59, a hawkish Pentagon official for international security policy under Ronald Reagan, has also been tipped for a job in George W Bush's administration.


Mr Bush has named two prominent businessmen as key members of his economic team.

He named Paul O'Neill, the chairman of the multi-national aluminium company Alcoa, as treasury secretary.

And Mr Bush's long-time associate and chief fundraiser, oil executive Donald Evans, becomes commerce secretary.

Mr O'Neill had previously been deputy budget director in the Nixon and Ford administrations, where he worked with both Dick Cheney and Alan Greenspan

Developing a good working relationship with Mr Greenspan will be crucial as the American economy faces one of its biggest challenges as boom turns to recession.

Marc Racicot, Montana governor
Marc Racicot: Buoyed by Florida performance
Mr Bush is also thought likely to give his chief economic adviser, Lawrence Lindsey, a top economic job - possibly chairman of the council of economic advisers or chairman of the national economic council.

And Mr Bush's policy director, Josh Bolten, is also tipped for the top trade job - possibly as his domestic policy advisor.

Mr Bolten has worked on trade policy during the previous Bush administration, and then worked for Wall Street investment bank Goldman Sachs.

And Time Warner president Richard Parsons or former State department official Bob Zoellick may be named as US trade representative, a cabinet-level post.

Click here for a full economic team profile

Search BBC News Online

Advanced search options
Launch console

Florida recount


Bush presidency:


Texts and transcripts:


See also:

23 Nov 00 | Americas
Cheney 'fine' after heart attack
25 Jul 00 | Americas
Dick Cheney - Bush's elder statesman
26 Oct 00 | Americas
Bush calls in the big guns
22 Oct 00 | Americas
Candidates clash over Balkans role
Internet links:

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more Americas stories are at the foot of the page.

E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Americas stories