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Washington Highlights

President Nominates Treasury Secretary, Labor Secretary Resigns

January 13, 2013—President Barack Obama Jan. 10 announced the nomination of current White House Chief of Staff Jacob Lew as the next Treasury Secretary, stating that he “cannot think of a better person” to continue outgoing Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner’s work.

Previously, Lew served as budget director for both Presidents Clinton and Obama. Lew also led 2011 talks with Congress that preceded approval of an increase in the debt ceiling. Before joining the Obama administration in 2009, Lew served as chief operation officer of Citigroup’s Global Wealth Management and Alternative Investments divisions.

Lew’s nomination is subject to Senate confirmation, which may come amid another battle to raise the debt ceiling. After the current debt limit was reached in Dec. 2012, the Treasury deployed “extraordinary measures” to create about $200 billion in headroom under the limit, allowing approximately two months — estimated between Feb. 15 and March 1 — before the U.S. defaults on its legal obligations [see Washington Highlights, Dec. 28, 2012]. Secretary Geithner announced his intent to step down by the end of January, whether or not Congress reaches a deal on raising the debt ceiling.

Opening another slot in Obama’s second-term Cabinet, U.S. Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis Jan. 9 also announced that she will be resigning.

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Washington Highlights, a weekly electronic newsletter, features brief updates on the latest legislative and regulatory activities affecting medical schools and teaching hospitals.

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Jason Kleinman
Sr. Legislative Analyst, Govt. Relations
Telephone: 202-903-0806