While it’s well known that Obama senior adviser Valerie Jarrett is (after President Obama himself) Rice’s biggest supporter to be nominated as secretary of state, self-interest has created a coalition of strange bedfellows who are also backing her, despite the deepening opposition from Republicans in Congress.

(Warning: This may require a scorecard.)

Now here’s the lineup: Tom Donilon , the current national security adviser, is said to want to keep his job for two more years.

If Rice gets the nod for SecState and Obama rolls the GOP opposition, the feeling is that Donilon is safe. If she doesn’t get the nomination, she would be a logical choice to replace Donilon as national security adviser.

Now, if Donilon stays in his job, the word is that his current deputy, Denis McDonough, has been promised the top spot in two years when Donilon would leave.