More than a month before he takes the oath of office, President-elect Barack Obama already is testing the loyalty of his liberal base.
On Monday, he is expected to announce his national security team, which will include Robert Gates as his defense secretary, a carry-over from the Bush administration, and retired Gen. Jim Jones, who supported John McCain for president, as his national security adviser.
Liberal blogger Chris Bowers of The Open Left says the message sent by the selection of Gates undermines Democrats.
"The message would be clear," he writes in his blog. "Even Democrats agree that Democrats can't run the military."
Obama's outspoken opposition to the Iraq war before he became a U.S. senator was one of the reasons he was embraced early in the presidential race by the anti-war faction of the Democratic Party's base, so his apparent decision to keep a Bush adviser as defense secretary for at least a year has raised some eyebrows within that faction.
Bowers, a member of the Pennsylvania state Democratic committee, argues that Gates provided support and cover for practices from waterboarding to the use of psychotropic drugs on terror detainees. The blogger isn't as negative toward Jones but still called it "very disappointing."
"It is just so very frustrating," Bowers writes. "It seems like the only place progressives are making any gains is in the House. We are being entirely left out of Obama's major appointments so far. I guess everyone gets to play in Obama's administration, except progressives."
Democratic blogger Brent Budowsky, who served as a congressional assistant in the 1970s and 1980s, said he would have preferred to see Republican Sen. Chuck Hagel of Nebraska or former Democratic Sen. Sam Nunn of Georgia get the nod for defense secretary.
Budowsky said he fears that Obama's national security team will steer him toward a longer military commitment than the one he made on the campaign trail.
"It is unfortunate that on an issue so momentous as who runs the Pentagon at time of war, the views that were stated in the campaign, and supported so deeply by the base of the Democratic Party and the new voters and small donors who were the heart of the Obama campaign, are sacrificed so quickly, for Bob Gates," he writes in his blog.
GOP strategist Dave Winston told FOX News that some pushback was to be expected.
"The base is clearly going to say, where are you headed in terms of this policy?" Winston said. "And I think it will cause him some headaches with the base, although for the overall country, I think they will see it quite favorably."
Democratic consultant Bob Beckel told FOX News that objections from liberals over Obama's Cabinet selections isn't all bad.
"Not so sure, from Obama's standpoint, it's bad politically," he said. "It helps him in his negotiation with Congress."
Obama's national security team also will include several former members of Bill Clinton's administration, eliciting some complaints about recycling people from the Clinton White House. And Obama is expected to pick Hillary Clinton to be his pick for secretary of state.
But Beckel says Obama needs experience from the last Democratic White House.
"If he went to a Democratic administration before that, he'd have to go to the nursing home," he said.
FOX News' Wendell Goler contributed to this report.