Sometimes photos tell the story, sometimes not. But our colleague Karen Tumulty noted a contrast in these two images that might raise eyebrows.
The first is a picture on 9/11 of Vice President Dick Cheney on the phone in the White House situation room — perhaps talking with President Bush — with several top aides standing by, including three women: National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice, Bush senior adviser Karen Hughes and senior Cheney adviser Mary Matalin. There are also two African Americans in the small group.
Then there’s the iconic photo of Obama in the situation room on the night Seal Team Six dispatched Osama bin-Laden. There’s one woman at the table, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, and another woman in the doorway, Audrey Tomason, director for counterterrorism at the National Security Council. There’s only one African American.
Obama on Monday addressed complaints that his second-term Cabinet might be lighter on women than his first, pointing out that he’s not done filling vacancies. “I would just suggest that everybody kind of wait until they’ve seen all my appointment[s], who is in the White House staff and who is in my cabinet, before they rush to judgment,” he said during a press conference.