Incoming chief of staff says Biden will begin announcing Cabinet picks this week

Allan Smith

Incoming White House chief of staff Ron Klain said Sunday that President-elect Joe Biden will begin announcing his Cabinet picks early this week.

Klain said on ABC News' "This Week" that Americans will see the first of Biden's nominees Tuesday.

"Meeting the pace — beating, in fact, the pace that was set by the Obama/Biden transition, beating the pace set by the Trump transition," Klain said, adding, "But if you want to know what Cabinet agencies they are, who's going to be in those Cabinet agencies, you'll have to wait for the president-elect to say that himself on Tuesday."

Last week, Biden told reporters that he has settled on a treasury secretary and that he would be naming the person around Thanksgiving. He gave no indication who that person might be.

Speaking on CNN's "State of the Union," Jen Psaki, a senior Biden transition official, said she expects some Cabinet secretaries to be named this week, with others to be announced the following week.

"The Cabinet and the team will look like America. That means diversity of ideology, diversity of background, and he wants to have a range of views of people at the table," Psaki said. "He wants to have a diversity of voices at the table because he fully understands that's how he's going to move an agenda forward."

In other transition news:

Klain said that because of the continued surge in Covid-19 cases, Americans can expect to see a nontraditional inauguration on Jan. 20.

"I think it's going to definitely have to be changed," Klain said. "We started some consultations with House and Senate leadership on that. Obviously, this is not going to be the same kind of inauguration we had in the past."

Klain said Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris are "going to try to have an inauguration that honors the importance and the symbolic meaning of the moment but also does not result in the spread of disease."

"I think we'll have some mix of those techniques, some mix of, you know, scaled-down versions of the existing traditions," Klain said. "People have a lot to celebrate on January 20th."