Yesterday, we finally got confirmation that Rahm Emanuel would be Obama’s first Chief of Staff. I say “first” because these guys never last more than a couple of years. It’s a tough, demanding job. As more positions are announced, I’ll write these “Staff Update” posts to keep you up to date.
Press Secretary: Robert Gibbs
Gibbs was the voice of Obama during the campaign and on Obama’s Senate staff, beginning as communications director and ending as a senior strategist. I like Gibbs’ southern roots: born in Alabama and graduating from NC State. One of Gibbs’ finest moments on the trail, in my opinion, was his take down of Sean Hannity after the second debate.
Senior Adviser: David Axelrod
Axelrod has been with Obama since God was a boy and is fiercely loyal. He and Rahm Emanuel are also good friends, which should allow for a sort of short hand among this triumvirate that can only help in the frenetic pace of a White House facing as many crises as this one will. It should also give insight as to why Emanuel was chosen for the job.
Economic Crisis Team:
These folks are not White House staff, but are a team of economists, business leaders, and politicians who will help Obama deal with the eocnomic crisis during this transition time. The members of the Transition Economic Advisory Board (TEAB) announced yesterday are (in no particular order):
Paul Volcker, Fed Chairman under Carter and Reagan
Eric Schmidt, Google CEO
Lawrence Summers, Treasury Secretary under Clinton
Robert Rubin, Treasury Secretary under Clinton
William Daley, Commerce Secretary under Clinton
Anne Mulcahy, Chaiman of Xerox
David Bonior, Former member of the House
Roel Campos, SEC Commissioner under W.
William Donaldson, SEC Chairman under W.
Roger Ferguson, former Vice Chair of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve
Gov. Jennifer Granholm, Michigan
Richard Parsons, Chairman of the Board, Time Warner
Penny Pritzker, CEO, Classic Residency by Hyatt
Robert Reich, Labor Secretary under Clinton
Antonio Villaraigosa, Mayor of Los Angeles
Laura Tyson, Former Chairman National Economic Council & President’s Council of Economic Advisors under Clinton