Obama To Nominate Economic Adviser Deese As Deputy Budget Director

by
Reuters
President Barack Obama will announce on Monday he has chosen White House economic adviser Brian Deese to be deputy director of the Office of Management and Budget.

President Barack Obama will announce on Monday he has chosen White House economic adviser Brian Deese to be deputy director of the Office of Management and Budget.

Deese, now deputy director of the White House's National Economic Council, would join Sylvia Mathews Burwell, a former Clinton administration official who later became president of the Walmart Foundation, whom Obama tapped to be director of OMB.

"From helping to navigate our rescue of a financial system on the brink of collapse to retooling a flatlining auto industry to crafting a policy to put our nation on a fiscally sustainable path, Brian Deese has proven an indispensable member of my economic team," Obama said in a statement, given to Reuters.

"He has a deep and intuitive understanding of economic and budgetary policy, and I am confident he will serve America well in this new role," Obama said.

Reuters reported last month that Deese was a leading candidate to be nominated for the job.

Deese is a young, popular member of the president's economic team who was closely involved with the administration's bailout of the auto industry.

He currently coordinates policy at the White House on taxes, financial regulation, clean energy and manufacturing.

If confirmed by the Senate, Deese and Burwell would be key players in executing the president's budget goals of reducing the U.S. deficit while investing in areas that would spur U.S. competitiveness such as early childhood education and clean energy technology.

Prior to his time in the White House, Deese served as economic policy director to then-Senator Hillary Clinton's 2008 presidential campaign.

He then became one of the rare Clinton staffers who landed in Obama's orbit after her loss in the Democratic nominating contest that year, serving as deputy economic policy director in Obama's campaign.

"Brian Deese is one of the brightest economic minds in government today," former Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said in a statement to Reuters.

U.S. Senator Patty Murray, chairman of the Senate Budget Committee, called Deese's selection a "strong choice" and in a statement noted that he had played a key role in the Obama administration's economic policy in the past six years.

Deese will help navigate the contentious between Republicans and Democrats over fiscal issues.

Maya MacGuineas, president of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget who describes herself as a political independent, said Deese - even with his close connection to Obama and Clinton - was more oriented toward policy than politics.

"He's not a political thinker, which I think will certainly serve him well and will serve the position well," she said.