Chicagoan Bill Daley is stepping down as White House chief of staff and budget director Jack Lew is taking over the president’s team as it heads into a tough election year, senior administration officials say.
Daley gave his letter of resignation to the president in a private meeting in the Oval Office last week, recounting the administration’s successes of his one year on the job and saying it was time for him to return to his hometown of Chicago.
Obama plans to announce the change in leadership in a public event this afternoon. The official shift will take place at the end of this month, giving Lew time to complete the administration’s budget proposal while Daley leads the team through the crafting of the State of the Union address due in two weeks.
“No one was more prepared and more in tune with the numbers than Jack Lew,” House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, whose walkout brought the talks near collapse Thursday, told POLITICO. “He was always very polite and respectful in his tone and someone who I can tell is very committed to his principles.”