It’s well known in Washington that outgoing White House Chief of Staff Bill Daley had a dysfunctional relationship with Capitol Hill — particularly with Democrats there. And early signs suggest the new Chief of Staff — Jack Lew, who has run the Office of Management and Budget for over a year — will by comparison receive a warm welcome.
“Folks up here will view Lew as a big improvement,” says one highly placed Democratic Hill aide. “It’s hard to see Lew making the same mistakes his predecessor did. Lew understands the way this place works.”
Regular readers won’t be surprised by this. Back in November, when news broke that Daley had been quasi-demoted at the White House, Congressional Dems were all too aware, and all too pleased.
A big question now is: Who will replace Lew as OMB director. That’s a Senate-confirmed position. And with Senate Republicans still furious about President Obama’s recent recess appointments — and with budget season now upon us — it’s easy to imagine a big fight over this vacancy…and possibly another recess appointment.
Brian Beutler is TPM's senior congressional reporter. Since 2009, he's led coverage of health care reform, Wall Street reform, taxes, the GOP budget, the government shutdown fight, and the debt limit fight. He can be reached at email@example.com.