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CNN Today

Bush to Meet With Labor Secretary Prospect

Aired January 10, 2001 - 4:34 p.m. ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

JOIE CHEN, CNN ANCHOR: Top U.S. military leaders met with their next commander in chief today. Former Defense Secretary Dick Cheney and retired General Colin Powell joined President-elect George W. Bush for talks at the Pentagon.

The Bush team met with the outgoing defense secretary, William Cohen, and members of the joint chiefs.

A day after Linda Chavez withdrew from consideration as labor secretary, Mr. Bush may be close to filling that position again. He's expected to meet shortly with someone said to be quite high on his list.

With the latest on that, here's CNN's Major Garrett, who is following the Bush transition from Austin to D.C., and I guess back again -- Major.

MAJOR GARRETT, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Joie. Yes, some of the developments here in Austin, some in Washington. We can tell you at this hour Eloise Anderson is flying to Washington. She will meet at 5:30 p.m. Eastern Time with Bush transition officials about possibly becoming the next nominee as labor secretary for the president-elect.

Now, who is Eloise Anderson? Well, she is someone who has worked for two Republican governors: Wisconsin Governor Tommy Thompson and former California Governor Pete Wilson. She worked for both of them on welfare issues.

She was at one time in her life a single mother on welfare -- welfare. She has a good deal of experience not only personally with welfare issues, but working for those two governors. She's really considered an innovator on welfare policy and also someone very steeped in the logistics and policy of working retraining.

She's at the top of a short list Bush transition officials are looking at to fill that vacancy at the Labor Department.

Other people on that list: Former Missouri Congressman James Talent, also current Washington Congresswoman Jennifer Dunn, and Elaine Chao, who is a former transportation secretary in the president-elect -- president-elect's father's administration, and Stephen Goldsmith, who is a former mayor of Indianapolis, Indiana.

But clearly, Eloise Anderson has moved to the top of the list. Senate Democrats first heard her name yesterday. Bush transition officials talked to them about her and Dunn and Talent. They say that she looks to be like a good potential nominee. We'll all see what happens. But that's where things stand right now -- Joie.

CHEN: All right, CNN's Major Garrett, watching developments today from Austin.

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