National political correspondent Lois Romano interviews the Washington power players who are defining the Obama presidency.

Carl Levin

Sen. Carl Levin

December 10 | Sen. Carl Levin (D-Mich.), chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, hopes any troop surge in Afghanistan mainly focuses on training Afghan soliders.Watch »
Senator calls for a different troop surge »
Full Q&A Transcript »
Melanne Verveer

State Dept.'s Melanne Verveer

November 19 | Melanne Verveer, an old friend of Sec. of State Clinton, has taken the lead in pushing for women's rights as the first ambassador at-large for global women's issues.Watch »
An advocate for the world's women »
Full Q&A Transcript »
John Rother

AARP Policy Director John Rother

November 12 | John Rother, policy director for AARP, has been in the thick of the health-care debate, especially after the AARP endorsed the House version of the reform bill.Watch »
Health care? He's got it covered. »
Full Q&A Transcript »
Additional Video
Drew Altman, Kaiser Family Foundation
November 2 | Drew Altman, President and CEO of the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation, has revitalized the grant-making organization into a vital resource in the health-care debate. Watch »
Health care? He's got it covered »
White House Cabinet Secretary Chris Lu
October 22 | Chris Lu discusses his past with President Obama and his task of keeping Cabinet agencies focused and on message. Watch »
Full Q&A Transcript »
Sen. John Rockefeller (D-W.Va.)
October 16 | Sen. Rockefeller discusses his bottom line on health care reform. Watch »
Full Q&A Transcript »
Congressional Oversight Panel Chair Elizabeth Warren
October 8 | Elizabeth Warren describes the stresses still facing the middle class and the legacy of "too big to fail." Watch »
Full Q&A Transcript »
Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.)
October 1 | Sen. John Kerry hopes Congress can hammer out a climate-change bill soon despite the many challenges facing Washington. Watch »
Full Q&A Transcript »
White House Economic Adviser Austan Goolsbee
September 24 | Austan Goolsbee is one of Barack Obama's top economic advisers, and the former University of Chicago professor isn't afraid of speaking his mind. Watch »
Full Q&A Transcript »
HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius
September 15 | Health and Human Services Sec. Kathleen Sebelius discusses swine flu preparedness and the rift over abortion among Catholics in her home state of Kansas. Watch »
Full Q&A Transcript »
Homeland Security Sec. Janet Napolitano
September 10 | Sec. Napolitano discusses the challenges of her department, including emergency preparedness, cybersecurity and swine flu planning. Watch »
Full Q&A Transcript »
Rep. Mike Ross
July 30 | Rep. Mike Ross (D-Ark.) has emerged as a leader of the conservative Blue Dog Democrats in the House during the push for health-care reform. Watch »
Full Q&A Transcript »
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi
July 24 | In the pursuit of health-care reform, Speaker Pelosi says industry contribution is needed to defray costs. Watch »
Full Q&A Transcript »
House Minority Whip Eric Cantor
July 17 | As a rising voice in the GOP, House Minority Whip Eric Cantor of Virginia leads the Republican charge pushing against President Obama's agenda. Watch »
Full Q&A Transcript »
Special Advisor to the President Van Jones
August 11 | Van Jones of the White House Council on Environmental Quality talks about the administration's plans to foster a green economy. NOTE: Van Jones resigned from the White House on September 5, after detractors unearthed politically damaging comments he made before joining the adminstration. Watch »
Full Q&A Transcript »
Labor Secretary Hilda Solis
June 30 | Labor Secretary Solis knows her priorities, as unemployment in the U.S. nears 10% and the labor unions' power lags behind that of business. Watch »
Full Q&A Transcript »
White House Communications Director Anita Dunn
June 19 | Interim White House communications director Anita Dunn couldn't refuse President Obama's plea for her to rejoin him after a hardfought campaign. Watch »
Full Q&A Transcript »
White House Adviser Valerie Jarrett
June 1 | Longtime Obama family confidant Valerie Jarrett continues her close relationship with the president as senior White House adviser. Watch »
Full Q&A Transcript »
Secretary of Treasury Tim Geithner
May 26 | Secretary of Treasury Tim Geithner discusses the struggling auto industry, his connections with Obama and being the national fall guy for a weak economy. Watch »
Full Q&A Transcript »
Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack
May 21 | Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack wants to make clear: the USDA is about more than farming. He discusses food safety, swine flu and his native Iowa's same-sex marriage ruling. Watch »
Full Q&A Transcript »
Secretary of Interior Ken Salazar
May 19 | Interior Secretary Ken Salazar on his reversal of Bush policies including mountaintop mining regulations, the opening of the Statue of Liberty and the confirmation of his deputy. Watch »
Full Q&A Transcript »
Secretary of Commerce Gary Locke
April 24 | Commerce Secretary Gary Locke describes his full plate: contributing solutions to the economic recovery and the swine flu response, and ensuring the 2010 census will not be politicized. Watch »
Full Q&A Transcript »
Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood
April 24 | Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, the only Republican in Obama's cabinet, relays his optimism for the economic stimulus and the administration's plans to revamp transportation for the 21st century. Watch »
Full Q&A Transcript »
Secretary of Energy Steven Chu
April 16 | Energy Secretary Chu says there can be such a thing as clean coal, he comments on Al Gore's anti-coal campaign and he explains the bumpy Cap and Trade road to Capitol Hill. Watch »
Full Q&A Transcript »
Secretary of HUD Shaun Donovan
April 9 | Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan explains the government's plan to stop foreclosures while taking all solutions to the housing crisis seriously. Watch »
Full Q&A Transcript »
Secretary of Education Arne Duncan
April 1 | Obama’s new Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, on why Obama picked him, what is he expected to accomplish and the secret location where Obama and Duncan play basketball. Watch »
Full Q&A Transcript »
White House press secretary Robert Gibbs
March 27 | President Obama's press secretary talks about his relationship with the president, the press strategy, and being prepared for the podium. Watch »
Full Q&A Transcript »
D.C. Mayor Adrian Fenty
March 20 | Mayor Adrian Fenty discusses the unique challenges of being the chief executive of the nation's capital and how he feels a "special kinship" with the president. Watch »
Q&A Excerpt »
White House social secretary Desiree Rogers
Feb. 27 | White House social secretary Desiree Rogers is making the president's house a place where "East meets West" and where business meets social. Watch »
Q&A Excerpt »
Obama Senior Adviser David Axelrod
Feb. 13 | David Axelrod, one of President Obama's closest aides, praised former president George W. Bush for his handling of the transition while sharply criticizing some of the former president's advisers. Watch »
Q&A Excerpt »
Energy 'Czarina' Carol Browner
Jan. 15 | As the first-ever assistant to the president for energy and climate change, Carol Browner will wield broad influence over environmental policies. Watch »
Q&A Excerpt »
Obama Campaign Manager David Plouffe
Jan. 13 -- David Plouffe, 41, who walks through Washington nearly unrecognized despite his accomplishments in the campaign, described the presidential race as a "two-year war." Q&A Excerpt »
Meet The Reporter
[Photo of Lois Romano]

Lois Romano, a national political reporter for the Washington Post, has covered seven presidential campaigns, wrote a daily column and served as a regional correspondent based in Tulsa, Okla. » More

About Voices of Power

"The Obama Era: Voices of Power" is a series of video interviews by Lois Romano with top officials in the Obama administration, and other important players on both sides of the aisle that are influencing this historic presidency. Launched in January, the interviews take measure of the people surrounding Obama and aim to provide insight into the policies and governing style he has brought to Washington. It also features those whose opposing views are impacting the process.

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