Obama Nominates Former Citi Hedge Exec. For Treasury

Jan 11 2013 | 12:04pm ET

President Barack Obama yesterday formally nominated a former Citigroup hedge fund executive to serve as the next U.S. Treasury Secretary.

Obama sent Jacob Lew's name to the Senate as his pick to succeed the outgoing Timothy Geithner, who served as the Treasury's top man for Obama's entire first term. Lew is currently White House chief of staff, but served as chief operating officer at Citi Alternative Investments prior to joining the Obama administration in 2009.

"Over the past year, I've sought Jack's advice on virtually every decision that I've made, from economic policy to foreign policy," the president said at a White House press conference.

Lew took over as chief of staff last January. During Obama's first term, he's also served as director of the Office of Management and Budget and as deputy secretary for management and resources at the State Department. Lew also served as head of OMB under President Bill Clinton.

"One reason Jack has been so effective in this town is because he is a low-key guy who prefers to surround himself with policy experts rather than television cameras," Obama said. "And over the years, he's built a reputation as a master of policy who can work with members of both parties and forge principled compromises."

Unlike his fellow recent nominees, former Sen. Charles Hagel for the Defense Department and John Brennan for the Central Intelligence Agency, Republicans are not expected to put up much of a fight against Lew, despite their belief that he's overly rigid and despite his clashes with Republicans over the debt ceiling in 2011. Lew has been confirmed by the Senate four times previously for other posts.


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