Obama nominates ‘low-key master of policy’ Lew for Treasury

January 11, 2013

Jack Lew
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.

“When the history books are written, Tim Geithner is going to go down as one of our finest secretaries of the Treasury,” said Obama, who recalled having to convince Geithner’s wife to allow him to stay on for his full first term.

“That 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,” Obama said.

In picking Lew, Obama is elevating a trusted insider and budget expert to be his administration’s economic point man at a time when tax and spending fights are dominating Washington and financial reform is taking a back seat.

“Jack has my complete trust, I know I am not alone in that,” Obama said. “I hope the Senate will confirm him as quickly as possible.

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