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Google Chairman Doesn't Want Spot on Obama's Cabinet

By - Source: BusinessWeek | B 8 comments

Google chairman Eric Schmidt has no interest in officially serving the government.

It seemingly started, at least this time around, with an article written by Paul Bedard of the Washington Examiner. He reported on a growing speculation that Google chairman and former CEO Eric Schmidt was lined up to serve either as President Obama's Secretary of Treasury, Secretary of Commerce, or to fill a brand new cabinet seat called Secretary of Business.

"Cabinet shakeup watchers have focused on Schmidt and his Yoda status in the Obama reelection campaign, Google's massive $1.9 million to Democrats in the election, and the administration's efforts to quiet a potential Federal Trade Commission investigation of Google as key signs that the president wants Schmidt in the cabinet," Bedard writes.

One Democratic strategist even chimed in with a comment saying nobody's better positioned for a Cabinet job... if Schmidt wants one, that is.

The report goes on to talk about Google and Schmidt, and their relationship with the President and the U.S. Government. Schmidt was reportedly a "cheerleader" when Obama began to push for the new round of stimulus back in 2011. The company's political action committee even dumped $1.6 million into the Democratic election in 2008 and over $700,000 to Obama's campaign in 2012.

An additional $2,1 million was reportedly generated for the Democratic party in the 2012 Presidential race thanks to Google's Super PAC campaign, and $715,000 for the Republican party.

Adding to that, Obama Campaign Manager Jim Messina reportedly said at a recent Politico breakfast that Schmidt was his "go-to guy". Thus combining that with the two campaign donations, meetings between Obama and Schmidt over the last four years, and the nomination of a GOP professor (with a record of fighting anti-trust enforcement) to fill a Republican vacancy as the FTC looks to probe Google, it looks as if Schmidt may very well take Obama's offer.

But that's not going to happen. Schmidt admits that he serves on the president’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology, but he said he has no interest in formally joining the administration. “How can I be clear?" he said. "I have the same answer. I do not want to be a federal government employee. Google is my home."

Shortly before Obama's re-election as President in November, Obama talked about creating a new Cabinet-level position called the Secretary of Business. According to President Obama, this person would oversee an agency – the Department of Business – that combined the functions of numerous smaller business-related agencies. Thus the government would save money by reducing the number of employees required to run the mega-agency by 1,000, saving an estimated $3 billion over the next decade.

Google's chairman was reportedly offered to serve on Obama's Cabinet once before, but he declined the position.

 

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  • 17 Hide
    wannabepro , December 6, 2012 3:06 PM
    Good.
  • -9 Hide
    madjimms , December 6, 2012 3:58 PM
    Sometimes I think the majority of people who comment are republicans...
  • 8 Hide
    zzz_b , December 6, 2012 4:18 PM
    I would not want to sit in it either, and I am not a republican!
  • 1 Hide
    XZaapryca , December 6, 2012 5:16 PM
    "Does not want" != "Wouldn't take a position if offered it by Obama" Can't count how many times I've heard of people doing a job they didn't want, but did it anyway out of a sense of duty or personal favor.

    /libertarian
  • -2 Hide
    Ananan , December 6, 2012 5:40 PM
    I'm sure he doesn't want the hassle of having his financial past delved into, or give up his big money job for that matter.

    Nowadays big business has more say in how the government is run than a cabinet minister anyway.
  • 3 Hide
    misterawsome , December 6, 2012 8:08 PM
    What a business man that has a right mind. IMPOSSIBRU
  • 1 Hide
    misterkay , December 6, 2012 11:55 PM
    "Thus the government would save money by reducing the number of employees required to run the mega-agency by 1,000, saving an estimated $3 billion over the next decade." I would love to see more stuff like this done. I feel for the jobs lost, but WE are paying for this.
  • -1 Hide
    Gundam288 , December 7, 2012 2:58 AM
    misterkay"Thus the government would save money by reducing the number of employees required to run the mega-agency by 1,000, saving an estimated $3 billion over the next decade." I would love to see more stuff like this done. I feel for the jobs lost, but WE are paying for this.

    Well, Gov. projects are always late and over budget and we pay for those as well. Those "savings" will be spent elsewhere given the Gov.'s track record so far.

    As for Eric Schmidt NOT wanting a Gov. job, at this point I don't blame him given the budget problem the US currently has and the pain in the butt process that it is to even work for the Gov., let alone the magnifying glass you and your past are put under. It's not always what it's cracked up to be. =/
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