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United States Cabinet Members

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  • John Ashcroft, U.S. Attorny General
    John David Ashcroft, a Senator from Missouri; born in Chicago, Ill., on May 9, 1942; attended the public schools in Springfield, Missouri; graduated from Yale University 1964; received J.D. degree from...
  • Benjamin Civiletti, United States Attorney General
    Benjamin Richard Civiletti (born July 17, 1935) served as the United States Attorney General during the last year and a half of the Carter administration, from 1979 to 1981. He was the first Italian Am...
  • William French Smith, United States Attorney General (1917 - 1990)
    William French Smith (August 26, 1917 – October 29, 1990) was an American lawyer. He was the 74th United States Attorney General.
  • Griffin Bell, United States Attorney General (1918 - 2009)
    Griffin Boyette Bell (October 31, 1918 – January 5, 2009) was an American lawyer and former United States Attorney General. He served as the nation's 72nd Attorney General during the Jimmy Carte...
  • Richard Kleindienst, United States Attorney General (1923 - 2000)
    Richard Gordon Kleindienst (August 5, 1923 – February 3, 2000) was an American lawyer, politician, and a U.S. Attorney General during the Watergate political scandal.

The United States Cabinet (usually referred to as the U.S. President's Cabinet or simplified as the Cabinet) is composed of the most senior appointed officers of the executive branch of the federal government of the United States. Its existence dates back to the first American President, George Washington, who appointed a Cabinet of four people (Secretary of State Thomas Jefferson; Secretary of the Treasury Alexander Hamilton; Secretary of War Henry Knox; and Attorney General Edmund Randolph) to advise and assist him in his duties. Cabinet officers are nominated by the President and then presented to the United States Senate for confirmation or rejection by a simple majority. If approved, they are sworn in and begin their duties. Aside from the Attorney General, and previously, the Postmaster General, they all receive the title Secretary. Members of the Cabinet serve at the pleasure of the President, which means the President may remove them at will.

Former Cabinet departments:

  • Department of Defense. Department of War (1789–1949): subsumed into new
  • Department of the Navy (1798–1947): subsumed into new Department of Defense.
  • Post Office Department (1829–1971), headed by the Postmaster General: reorganized as the United States Postal Service, an independent executive agency.
Renamed Cabinet offices:
  • Secretary of Foreign Affairs: created in July 1789 and renamed Secretary of State in September 1789
  • Secretary of Commerce and Labor: created in 1903 and renamed Secretary of Commerce in 1913 when its labor functions were transferred to the new Secretary of Labor.
  • Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare: created in 1953 and renamed Secretary of Health and Human Services in 1979 when its education functions were transferred to the new Secretary of Education.

Cabinet departments today:

  • Department of State
  • Department of the Treasury
  • Department of Defense
  • Department of Justice
  • Department of the Interior
  • Department of Agriculture
  • Department of Commerce
  • Department of Labor
  • Department of Health and Human Services
  • Department of Housing and Urban Development
  • Department of Transportation
  • Department of Energy
  • Department of Veterans Affairs
  • Department of Homeland Security

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