[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/12/01/clintonsmiling2.jpg caption="Barack Obama's cabinet choices reflect a centrist approach in the tradition of former President Bill Clinton."]
Julian E. Zelizer
Author of "Rightward Bound: Making America Conservative in the 1970s"
Many observers use historian Doris Kearns Goodwin's term, "A Team of Rivals," to describe the cabinet that President-elect Barack Obama is assembling.
They use the term to characterize choices like former Obama opponent Sen. Hillary Clinton - expected to be nominated Monday as Secretary of State - and current secretary of defense Robert Gates who is being asked to stay on by Obama.
But a more useful term might be a team of centrists. The most striking characteristic of the current lineup is how the personalities reflect the centrist vision of the Democratic Party promoted by Bill Clinton and his colleagues at the Democratic Leadership Council in the 1990s.
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