Maybe it’s an election-year maneuver crafted for maximum voter appeal, but President Barack Obama’s proposed merger of six large agencies seems like a prudent cost-cutting move in financially trying times.

The White House proposal could eliminate 1,000 jobs and save $3 billion over a decade.

Obama’s proposal would fold six major business and trade operations into one agency. It also would elevate the head of the Small Business Administration to a Cabinet-level position.

The plan is designed to give businesses, large and small, better access to government. It is intended to help U.S. businesses export more goods and to grow the economy.

The power the president is seeking also would allow him to propose other government consolidations to federal lawmakers, who would vote them up or down within 90 days. The commerce and trade proposals are supposed to be the first of a series of consolidations.

That all sounds pretty good to us.

Whether it’s political opportunism should hardly matter so long as it’s good policy.

— The Denver Post, Jan. 14

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