Yesterday, I speculated on some of the possible reasons why Sen. Judd Gregg would make the puzzling decision to give up his Senate seat and put Republicans in a precarious position for a meaningless cabinet post. But for President Obama, this was an absolutely brilliant political move. After Bill Richardson was forced to withdraw his nomination as Commerce Secretary due to an investigation, the post became a huge headache for the new administration. Yet somehow, Obama managed to turn the position into pure gold. By appointing Gregg, it means that in the best case scenario for Republicans, a conservative Senator will be replaced by a moderate who will be vulnerable for reelection in 2010. And Obama gets to weaken the Republican caucus in the Senate while at the same time appearing bipartisan by having appointed a conservative to fill a cabinet position. It’s stunning that Gregg would agree to this, but demonstrates once again how creative and politically savvy Obama is.