Sen. Olympia Snowe (R-Maine) called on President-elect Obama Monday to raise the Small Business Administration to a cabinet-level position, as it was under the Clinton administration.
Snowe's request raises an interesting scenario: If Obama raised the SBA and then named Snowe as the secretary, Maine Gov. John Baldacci -- a Democrat -- would be in position to appoint a Democrat to the Senate, giving the party at least 59 members. That'd leave them one short of a filibuster-proof majority. If Al Franken pulled out a victory in the Minnesota recount, Democrats would be at 60.
Snowe is the ranking member on the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship. A moderate Republican, she may end up supporting Obama on a range of issues anyway. In the past, she has said she intended to serve in the 111th Congress when other opportunities have been raised.
Last week, Snowe met with "a key member of the Obama transition team" to talk about his support for small businesses and the federal agency that serves them, she said in a statement.
A Snowe spokeswoman said that she would check with the Senator to get comment on the possibility of a cabinet appointment.
The full statement and letter after the jump...
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