So Gore is secretly telling people that Clinton is the true number two while Clinton is whispering to members of his administration like Mineta that Gore will retain them once elected. I guess those two are on the same page.
So who's right? Well, those like Mineta who are hoping to be kept on will most likely be disappointed. Presidents far more influential than Clinton have tried and failed to extend their presidential influence after their terms ended. It never worked. Teddy Roosevelt, one of the most popular Presidents ever, practically handpicked his successor Taft. Once in office, however, Taft ceased to be the former-President's pawn and replaced all of Teddy's people with lawyers. Of course, Teddy was livid and journeyed back from his African safari to run for President again. He lost.
You can't take it with you.
Secretary Norman Mineta, however, still has reason to hope. Many former VPs have kept the former president's cabinet when the president died or was deposed during office. Mineta can always pray for Clinton to catch a sudden case of pneumonia as Harrison did from making a speech without a hat on. Or, since Ford did keep all of Nixon's cabinet, he can hope for a second impeachment.
If Mineta would rather not harbor such macabre illusions there is always another chance. According to Brett Flehinger, Professor of History, there are cases of members of the cabinet going on to be elected President (like President Hoover). So if Gore is elected and decides to ask for Mineta's resignation, he can always run to become the big cheese himself in 2004. Here's to hoping.
Christina S. Lewis '02, a Crimson executive, is a history and literature concentrator in Leverett House.