It's official: former first lady, New York senator and Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton is President-elect Barack Obama's choice for Secretary of State. It's an interesting one for a whole host of reasons but, since USAID is controlled by the State Department, let's concentrate on what Clinton's pick may mean for the development community.
Any development priorities in a new administration will come from the White House. But of course it's foolish to believe that the president is the only one influencing policy. Clinton will bring her own agenda to the table and leave her own distinct mark on the State Department.
Last December, Clinton released her "global development agenda." Highlights included:
1) A $50 billion investment in HIV/AIDS prevention, treatment and care.
2) Commitment to end deaths in Africa from malaria.
3) Commitment to free basic education.
4) Empowering women in the political, economic and social sectors.
5) Investments in childhood vaccines.
6) Canceling debts of poor nations.
7) Commitment to spend 1 percent of the U.S. budget on foreign assistance.
In addition, as first lady, Clinton was a strong supporter of microfinance efforts and entrepreneurship.
Clinton clearly has made development-related issues a priority during her years of working in government. It remains to be seen whether her development priorities are in line with those of the Obama administration.
The One Campaign's Chris Scott has compiled more on Clinton's development priorities on his blog.