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According to a July 7 report in the Washington Post, trucking industry lobbyist Bill Graves, a former Kansas governor, is considered the front runner to replace outgoing U.S. Transportation Secretary Norman Mineta.

Government and industry sources also told the newspaper that Federal Aviation Administration Head Marion Blakey is another strong candidate. Blakey headed the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration in the early 1990s.

When asked about his preference for a successor, Mineta told Traffic World magazine recently that he would prefer his former deputy Maria Cino.

A decision on the Cabinet post could come as early as this week, Bush administration officials say.