President Obama on Thursday nominated his “low-key” Chief of Staff Jack Lew to be the next secretary of the Treasury.
Obama described the Washington veteran as a master of policy and said he knew “very few people with greater integrity” in a ceremony in which he also lavished praised on Timothy Geithner, the man Lew would succeed if the Senate confirms him.
â€œWhen the history books are written, Tim Geithner is going to go down as one of our finest secretaries of the Treasury,â€ said Obama, who recalled having to convince Geithner’s wife to allow him to stay on for his full first term.
â€œThat is why, when he was considering leaving a few years ago, I had to personally get on my knees with Carol to convince him to stay on a little bit longer,â€ Obama said.
In picking Lew, Obama is elevating a trusted insider and budget expert to be his administrationâ€™s economic point man at a time when tax and spending fights are dominating Washington and financial reform is taking a back seat.
â€œJack has my complete trust, I know I am not alone in that,â€ Obama said. â€œI hope the Senate will confirm him as quickly as possible.
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