CNN's Dr. Sanjay Gupta backed out of consideration for the post of Surgeon General this week. Though not yet formally nominated Gupta was widely understood to be the choice for the post within the Obama administration. Gupta sited family related priorities as his reason for withdrawing from consideration. I haven't heard yet if there are any rumors surfacing as to any deeper issues or anything relating to his vetting process. It may be that with a new baby on the way he simply doesn't want to uproot things with his family. The larger issue is that losing nominees is becoming the mark of the Obama presidency.
In related news Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner's expected pick for his Deputy has withdrawn her name from consideration as well. Annette Nazareth a prominent former high level staffer at the SEC, has withdrawn for personal reasons as well. There's no indication that policy disputes or vetting related issues are involved in these 'personal reasons'.
With so many high level positions sitting vacant and a seemingly non-stop stream of legal and tax issues for those that have been chosen, its hard to imagine how things are getting done. There is a concern floating around that the Obama admin. is making sweeping policy decision in areas like the economy and health care in a time when it seems impossible for them to have the kind of advice structure in place to truly examine the potential risks in their strategy. The Bush admin. took heat repeatedly for a cowboy-like shoot-from-the-hip policy mentality but nothing they did comes close the wild swings in policy coming out of this admin. and it boggles the mind to think that there really aren't very many experts on board yet. And it's not just the blogosphere that notices. A great many people on Wall Street are sitting up and taking note of the fact that while the credit window is wide open there doesn't seem to be anybody minding the store.