At the dawn of a new era in American history, the important role played by the Cabinet cannot be over-emphasized. In choosing his advisers Mr. Harding has been guided by three considerations,--service to country, popularity, and politics. The last seems to have had no inconsiderable influence.
The selection of Charles Evans Rughes for Secretary of State--the first officer of the American Cabinet bodes well for the incoming administration. The new secretary, says Senator Harding, will speak for the State Department; the long public career of Mr. Hughes amply justifies his appointment. Herbert Hoover's world-wide reputation for executive ability is likewise of much greater significance than his power with the voters. But in the selection of other Cabinet members, Mr. Harding's application of his principles will have to stand the test of time. Mr. Weeks and Mr. Davis are men of unquestioned ability and experience, and their national reputation will doubtless draw to them popular support. Mr. Daugherty, Harding's campaign manager and chief political reliance, and the surprising choice for Secretary of the Navy, owe their places to obvious political considerations.
In the wise choice of his advisers rests much of the success of any President's administration, and the personnel of the cabinet as it now stands bears indications of skillful manipulation. Mr. Harding is to be congratulated in that his juggling has landed some experts. At the same time, however, it is unfortunate that a president should be compelled to juggle at all in selecting the nation's departmental heads. But it was, perhaps, too much to hope that a consistently high standard of personnel be maintained under the present political system.