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For immediate release: Nov. 5, 2004
Media contact: Eric Quiñones, (609) 258-5748, quinones@princeton.edu

Media advisory: Scholar comments on Bush's transition to second term

PRINCETON, N.J. -- Now free of the constraints of a re-election campaign, President Bush needs to move quickly to reorganize his cabinet heading into his second term, according to presidential scholar David Lewis of Princeton University.

"If he delays, this could hinder his ability to focus on his legislative and administrative agenda," said Lewis, who noted that likely positions for change include the key cabinet posts of secretary of state, secretary of defense, secretary of homeland security and attorney general.

"He does not need to take his re-election into account when making personnel decisions. Remember, appointments are not always given to the most competent and most loyal. They are often given to people to satisfy an interest group, pay off a political debt or another reason. If the president is not getting along with an appointee or an appointee needs to be removed because he or she is not doing a good job, the president is now freer to ask that person to leave," he said.

Lewis, an assistant professor of politics and public affairs and the author of "Presidents and the Politics of Agency Design" (Stanford University Press, 2003), is available to comment on Bush's transition to his second term and other matters related to the presidency. He can be reached at (609) 258-0089 or delewis@princeton.edu.

Judicial appointments and the development of the next generation of Republican leaders are also major items on Bush's second-term agenda, Lewis noted.

Lewis, who joined the Princeton faculty in 2002, focuses on the presidency, executive branch politics and public administration. He has written numerous articles on American politics, public administration and management.

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