Obama said he’s grateful that the two-term governor, the nation’s first of Chinese descent, has “agreed to leave one Washington for another.” He said the Commerce Department will play a vital role in helping carry out the administration’s economic recovery policies.
Gary will be a trusted voice in my cabinet, a tireless advocate for our economic competitiveness, and an influential ambassador for American industry who will help us do everything we can â€“ especially now â€“ to promote it around the world.
Of course, Locke wasn’t Obama’s first choice for the Cabinet position, or even the second. The first pick, New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson,Â bowed out in early January because of an ongoing federal investigation into one of his political contributors. Obamaâ€™s second choice, Republican Sen. Judd Gregg of New Hampshire, abruptly withdrew his nomination Feb. 12 after deciding that he couldnâ€™t work in a Democratic administration.