President Obama and his administration are considering Gen. David Patraeus as the next CIA director, according to CNN. Patraeus is currently the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan. Obama's administration haven't made any official announcements regarding personnel decisions yet. President Obama's national security team may see significant change in the coming year, with many top members preparing to leave their posts. Defense Secretary Robert Gates has wanted to retire for some time now and chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Adm. Mike Mullen's term is scheduled to end this year.
Current CIA Director Leon Panetta is one person high on the list to replace Gates as Defense Secretary, according to an unidentified official.
However, CIA spokesman George Little said Panetta "isn't seeking any other job and hasn't been asked by the president to take on a different role."
"There is a lot of chatter and a lot of speculation out there right now about what Gen. Petraeus may do in the future," said Patraeus spokesman Col. Erik Gunhus. "And all of it is premature, and thus we aren't commenting."
It's unusual for a military officer to acknowledge he or she is in the running for a presidential nomination, but Gen. Patraeus has commented.
"Well, again, it's probably not appropriate for me to comment on whatever might be considered down the road," said Patraeus. "I've had discussions, but again, it wouldn't be appropriate to comment."