Alexis Simendinger

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Senate confirms seven Cabinet-level nominees

January 20, 2009 The Senate acted swiftly just hours after President Obama's inauguration ceremonies to confirm six of his Cabinet nominees as well as his budget director. By unanimous consent, the Senate confirmed at 3:42 p.m. Tuesday the nominations of Obama's picks to lead the departments of Energy (Steven Chu), Education (Arne Duncan),...

Agency heads get guidance on top hires

January 13, 2009 Obama transition officials are making it clear to incoming Cabinet secretaries and agency heads that they'll be handed a slate of perhaps five or six pre-screened candidates for the top jobs in their departments and encouraged to interview and hire from among those candidates. If the secretaries want to reach...

Obama expected to name Peter Orszag OMB director

November 18, 2008 President-elect Barack Obama is preparing to tap Congressional Budget Office Director Peter Orszag, once a veteran economic adviser in the Clinton White House, to become his budget director, according to several National Journal sources. The Office of Management and Budget job -- seen as a key post to help Obama...

Transition team wastes no time

November 7, 2008 President-elect Obama hosted an economic summit in Chicago on Friday, to make the most of his short metamorphosis from candidate to world leader and to get his administration off to a quick, confident start on January 20. The meeting with a group of government, academic, financial, and business experts was...

Election results will influence the regulatory climate

October 6, 2008 Editor's note: This article is excerpted from a National Journal story exploring how much of a difference the next president will be able to make in a number of policy areas. The Bush era, which ushered in business-friendly federal regulation and enforcement, would end if Barack Obama wins in November...

For GOP, a second chance at disaster management

September 1, 2008 John McCain could eventually decide that Hurricane Gustav was a wind from heaven, at least from the perspective of his convention messaging. Although the GOP political festivities in Minneapolis-St. Paul may shed some of the long-planned glitter, and McCain may be forced to drop the sharp jabs he had intended...

Bill would give National Archives greater reach in electronic records management

May 16, 2008 Officials at the National Archives are conflicted about new powers that the House is poised to give them to ride herd on the electronic messages, records, and e-mails of future presidents. The National Archives and Records Administration is already tasked with capturing, preserving, and cataloguing the records of presidents and...

Wall between political operatives, agencies crumbling

June 4, 2007 Monica Goodling learned everything she needed to know about screening candidates for Justice Department jobs during her year as an opposition researcher at the Republican National Committee. If President Bush's critics were looking for a simple testimonial to illustrate how the White House managed to push GOP-centered political considerations deep...

Executive branch courts Hill staffers left jobless after elections

December 19, 2006 President Bush and the Iraq war spelled defeat last month for Republicans on Capitol Hill, but the party's losses are giving the administration a rare chance to pour new blood into key executive posts during the president's seventh year. History suggests that administrations at the end of their second terms...

White House chief's notebook raises question: What's a 'record'?

October 10, 2006 Former White House Chief of Staff Andrew Card sought to circumvent the Presidential Records Act -- which has governed the ownership of presidential and vice presidential records since President Nixon's shootout over the White House tapes -- by keeping a secret record of top government jobs paired with running lists...

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