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In Transition: William J. Bratton

(Stuart Ramson - AP)
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Monday, November 17, 2008

WILLIAM J. BRATTON

Current job: Chief, Los Angeles Police Department.

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Credentials: Only person to head both the Los Angeles and New York police departments; also served as Boston police commissioner, where he began his career; founded a management consulting company and wrote an autobiography on police reform. U.S. Army Vietnam veteran.

What he offers: Bratton, 61, leads counterterrorism efforts in the nation's third-largest police department and has expanded information systems, intelligence-sharing and police terrorism training. He is a skilled communicator and innovator credited with helping lower crime rates in the nation's two biggest cities.

Vetting: Bratton's outspokenness led to clashes with his former boss, then-New York Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani (R), and as with Raymond W. Kelly, his "top cop" image runs counter to some Democrats' vision for DHS. He was an early supporter of Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) for president, but recorded an audio message for Obama after Giuliani did so for Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.)

Quote: "Fighting terrorism is not just the responsibility of the federal government. . . . Local government has got significant responsibilities as well as capabilities, as well as ideas."


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