If Obama wants someone who has been openly critical of President Bush, Krugman would be it. Plus, he just won the Nobel Prize for Economics, which is not a bad resume builder. "He has clearly shown that he is looking after the public interest," says Weisbrot.
What's more, many of Krugman's policies are centrist, even though he is considered a liberal economist. He has written in favor of sweatshops [i.e., exploitation trumps starvation] and against rent control. That might match up well with Obama, who favors market based solutions, when possible, over strict government mandates.
But since he has been such a harsh, outspoken critic of Bush, particularly in his role as a New York Times columnist, Krugman would come off as a politically charged pick. Some Republicans might find it tough to work with Krugman, who has relentlessly hammered away at their policies for the past eight years. Lastly, not all of Krugman's policy stances match up with Obama. Krugman, for instance, is against ethanol mandates, while Obama plans to increase the use of the biofuel. So put Krugman on the long-shots list.