Oberstar In The President's Cabinet?

By KBJR Manager

November 9, 2010 Updated Nov 9, 2010 at 7:47 PM CDT

Representative Jim Oberstar is back in Washington and back to work. until January.

The 35 year veteran congressman lost his bid to retain his seat during the elections Tuesday night. He'll be replaced by political new-comer Republican Chip Cravaack.

But the sun might not be setting on Mr. Oberstar's political career just yet.

In Washington Oberstar is known as "Mr. Transportation".

On Wednesday, the morning after the loss was confirmed, Oberstar received a phone call from President Obama who expressed disappointment about the loss while saying how important Oberstar has been in the area of transportation.

John Schadl was with the congressman when the president called.

"Jim said to him Mr. President I want you to know that while my service to my Congressional district has ended my commitment to public service has not."

Congressman Oberstar told the president he was ready to assist the Obama administration in any way he could.

That's when the president said let's let the dust settle and then we'll talk about that.

Oberstar aide John Schadl says many in Washington are speculating that it isn't a far leap from "Mr. Transportation" to "Mr. Secretary of Transportation".

Currently Republican Ray LaHood holds that position but the president has the right to replace him at any time.

Schadl pointed out that Congressman Oberstar has already drafted a comprehensive Federal Surface Transportation bill that's been stalled for the past 18 months in Congressional discussion.

President Obama supports this bill and wants it to pass and with Congressman Oberstar out of the immediate political arena, he might be in a stronger position as Transportation Secretary, to get the bill approved bi-partisanly.