Obama needs a ‘phalanx of political and policy power’

Updated
Let me finish tonight with a plan to strengthen America’s ability to solve its problems. It’s tough and it’s watertight. President Obama has many strengths as this country’s head of state. He is clear-minded, gifted in intellect, artful in presenting issues and his vision of leadership. However, these past two years have been a shakedown cruise. We have seen the weaknesses in the ship of state. It’s come time for the shake-up. This president needs to put a firm Democratic brand on U.S. defense policy. He was smart to keep Robert Gates at the Pentagon, but Gates is a holdover from the Bush era. There’s no real connection between what the country voted for in 2008 and what we’re getting in terms of security policy. Obama needs to bridge that gap. He needs to pick a Democrat ally of his as Defense Chief. That Democratic ally is Hillary Clinton. With her at the Pentagon, he’d forge confidence on Middle East policy. Friends of Israel would know we have someone in charge of America’s military forces who has an instinctive concern for the Jewish state, a proven track record of support. It will help get the deal cooked - and getting that deal is the very stuff of American greatness. Now to the tough one: the economy. There is one person in the country with the track record, the communications pizzazz to help make, carry out and market the historic recovery program that is still needed. His name is Michael Bloomberg. Look, you can say this is outlandish, that he’d never take the job or Treasury Secretary or White House chief of staff, but there’s a precedent. James Baker. He made Reagan a success. And Barack Obama needs a Jim Baker, someone to focus the energies of the administration on economic reconstruction period, someone to lay down the same strong chain of command on domestic front that Hillary Clinton will define on the national security front. This is the answer. Enough of the solo act. President Obama needs to build a team - a phalanx of political and policy power that takes his idealism and makes it deliver in strength abroad, jobs and renewed economic confidence at home. Okay. I have a dream.

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Ronald Reagan, George W. Bush and Barack Obama

Obama needs a 'phalanx of political and policy power'

Updated