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This month is usually taken up with discussions about who will be in the next administration. A new president not only appoints a cabinet, but commands several thousand senior and middle-ranking jobs in the civil service which will also change hands from one party to another.

A great deal of lobbying goes on about who is to get which job. If Mr Bush is re-elected, he is likely to make some changes anyway.


Mon 13 Electoral college formally meets to chose the president
Tues 14
Wed 15
Thu 16
Fri 17
Sat 18
Sun 19
Source: FEC, 8 January 2004. Dates are subject to change

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