The Obama Presidency | A Transition to Power

The Trail

Vice President Cheney will meet with his successor (and critic).
Vice President Cheney will meet with his successor (and critic). (By Win Mcnamee -- Getty Images)
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Thursday, November 13, 2008

VEEP, VEEP

Bidens to Visit The Cheneys Today

Vice President-elect Joe Biden is scheduled to meet Thursday with Dick Cheney, whom he has said is probably "the most dangerous vice president we've had" in U.S. history.

The session is scheduled to take place late in the afternoon at the vice president's residence at the Naval Observatory. The two men are to be joined by their wives, Jill Biden and Lynne Cheney. In addition to the meeting, the vice president-elect and his wife are scheduled to take a tour of their new digs.

Biden, a 35-year Senate veteran with a deep knowledge of foreign policy, has said he expects to be an "adviser in chief" to President-elect Barack Obama. But his aides have emphasized that he will not run "a shadow operation" -- a pointed reference to Cheney, who is known for having a strong hand in shaping Bush administration policy.

Biden also has been critical of Cheney for what he considers excessive secrecy and for holding too much power in the Bush White House.

-- Michael A. Fletcher

LEADER-TO-LEADER

Obama Returning Lots of Phone Calls

Ever wonder what a president-elect does with all that time before actually taking over the most powerful job on Earth?

Well, according to Barack Obama's aides, he spends a lot of time on the phone.

Throughout the day Tuesday, Obama returned calls from world leaders -- including the pope and the president of Kenya, his father's homeland -- who had sent their congratulations on his victory, a spokesman said.

Aides put out the list of leaders late Tuesday night. Obama is likely to continue making calls as he hunkers down in Chicago for the rest of the week -- transition chief John Podesta told reporters they should plan to remain in the Windy City for the near future.

"I think that he's tried to return those phone calls in due order and, particularly, to our traditional partners and allies," Podesta told reporters Wednesday. "And as those calls are made, it is our intention to brief them out to the press, and subsequent calls that were also made."

The full list of those called on Tuesday included President Luiz InĂ¡cio Lula da Silva of Brazil, Pope Benedict XVI, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh of India, King Abdullah of Jordan and President Mwai Kibaki of Kenya.

-- Michael D. Shear


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