First day jitters?
From left: President Barack Obama; Senior Advisor Valerie Jarrett; Lew; Senior Advisor David Plouffe; Counsel to the President Kathryn Ruemmler; Director of Communications Dan Pfeiffer; Counselor to the President Pete Rouse: Press Secretary Jay Carney; Rob Nabors, Assistant to the President for Legislative Affairs; Nancy-Ann DeParle, Deputy Chief of Staff for Policy; Alyssa Mastromonaco, Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations; and Bruce Reed, Chief of Staff to the Vice President.
January 30th, 2012
05:33 PM ET

First day jitters?

It was the first day on the job for new White House Chief of Staff Jack Lew. But it wasn't actually his first day at the White House. In his former position as the Director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), Lew was responsible for overseeing the preparation of the federal budget and financial management of the Executive Office of the President.

Topics: Jack Lew • The Buzz
Why is Daley leaving the White House?
January 9th, 2012
07:55 PM ET

Why is Daley leaving the White House?

When Bill Daley departs the White House, President Obama will have had either three or four chiefs of staff in his first term – depending how you count: Rahm Emanuel, interim Chief of Staff Pete Rouse (who served briefly), Bill Daley and now Jack Lew.

It’s a lot of turnover for one term, though it probably doesn’t impact his image – voters might not really care about internal staff changes in the West Wing. The President and multiple administration officials say it was Daley’s decision to go. Multiple Democratic sources say he has been unhappy.

So why didn’t it work for Daley?  According to many Democratic sources:

Hard to Break In – Daley was a Chicago heavy-hitter but he wasn’t a campaign insider. The president was already getting advice from long time senior counselors who weren’t going to cede their relationship. Among them: Valerie Jarrett, David Plouffe, Pete Rouse and David Axelrod in Chicago.

No Staff Changes – Multiple sources tell CNN Daley never got the support from the president to make what he thought were necessary changes for the White House to function better.

Business Relations – Daley was originally brought in - in part - to improve relations with the business community. Once the campaign kicked in and the focus turned to the president as champion of working Americans, relations with the business community became less of a priority.

Finally, Jack Lew is well liked, low key, and has years-long good relations with the Hill. Think of him as a chief financial officer-type, one who can manage the White House while others worry about the campaign.

Topics: Jack Lew • The Buzz • White House • William Daley
Dir. Lew: Improper federal payments on the decline
Office of Management and Budget Director Jack Lew called a reduction in improper federal payments "good stewardship."
November 15th, 2011
04:38 PM ET

Dir. Lew: Improper federal payments on the decline

Following up on an executive order signed by the president in 2009, Obama administration officials held a conference call today to announce their progress in reducing “improper payments” made by the federal government. Totaling $116 billion in fiscal year 2011, improper payments are defined as payments made by the federal government either in the wrong amount, to the wrong person, or for the wrong reason.

“At a time when our most critical programs – economic programs, social safety net programs – are experiencing tighter and tighter budgets, it's particularly imperative that we not tolerate such errors,” Office of Management and Budget Director Jack Lew said on the call.

Today Lew announced that in FY 2011 the federal government cut improper payments by $18 billion and recaptured $1.2 billion in erroneous payments. When combined with the numbers from FY 2010, the government has prevented nearly $21 billion in improper payments and recaptured over $1.9 billion, Lew said.

Secretaries Kathleen Sebelius and Arne Duncan as well as Deputy Agriculture Secretary Kathleen Merrigan also participated in the call, outlining efforts underway at their respective agencies to reduce payments made in error.

But OMB officials urged caution in how these numbers are interpreted. The government does deem a payment improper if it has paid too much, but also if it has paid too little or even if it has simply made an error in documenting what the payment was for. Meaning that ultimately not all of the money saved or recaptured goes to paying down the deficit, or even returns to the program to which it was originally allocated. FULL POST

Topics: Jack Lew • OMB
Obama's budget plan
OMB Director Jack Lew explains the Obama budget
February 14th, 2011
08:36 AM ET

Obama's budget plan

 By Jeanne Sahadi, senior writer

WASHINGTON (CNNMoney) - President Obama on Monday will unveil a $3.7 trillion budget request for 2012 that proposes painful cuts in many government programs but fails to address the largest drivers of the country's long-term debt: Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security.

The budget takes a big bite out of domestic spending and would slash deficits by $1.1 trillion over the next decade, according to White House estimates Two-thirds of those deficit cuts would result from spending reductions, while a third would come from an increase in tax revenue, according to senior administration officials.

For the FULL STORY click here

Topics: Budget • Jack Lew • President Obama • The News
Obama on Jack Lew
November 18th, 2010
10:35 PM ET

Obama on Jack Lew

"I am pleased that Jack Lew has been confirmed, with wide bipartisan support, to serve as my next Director of the Office of Management and Budget. He brings unparalleled experience and wisdom to this important job at a critical time in our nation’s history. After years of irresponsibility in Washington, we need to make the tough choices to put our country back on a sustainable fiscal path and lay the foundation for long-term job creation and economic growth. We need to cut waste where we find it and create a government that is efficient, effective, and responsive to the American people. I am confident Jack Lew can lead us in these efforts, and look forward to working with him in the days ahead."

Topics: Jack Lew • President Obama • The News
November 18th, 2010
10:27 PM ET

Senate confirms new White House budget chief

WASHINGTON (CNN) – The U.S. Senate confirmed Jacob J. Lew as director of the White House's Office of Management and Budget by a voice vote Thursday night. Lew succeeds Peter Orszag, who headed President Barack Obama's budget team until his departure in July.

Read the complete story at

Topics: Jack Lew • President Obama • The News