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Obama Rolls Out Econ Team, Dings Dow Rally

The only semi-surprise from President-elect Barack Obama's just-concluded news conference on his economic team is the nomination of Melody Barnes to be the director of the Domestic Policy Council, advising the president on matters such as Social Security reform.

Barnes, a lawyer, formerly of the liberal Center for American Progress, was chief counsel to Sen. Ted Kennedy (D-Mass.) on his Judiciary committee. She's also a member of the D.C. bar.

Here's a C-Span Q-and-A with Barnes.

We know from this that Barnes likes to shop for clothes in her hometown of Richmond, which is the first entry that pops up when you Google Barnes.

If the press conference were a baseball game, Obama would have been what is known as a "rally-killer:" The guy who strikes out with two outs and the bases loaded. As a White Sox fan, Obama would ruefully appreciate this reference.

When Obama began the presser, the Dow was trading up about 314 points.

By the time he was done, it had shed nearly 100 points, trading up about 226 points .

Why? One theory: He refused to put a dollar figure on the big economic stimulus plan he and Congressional Democrats want to enact, despite the fact that Obama said he wanted it "enacted right away."

Obama was asked what he thought about the heads of Detroit's Big Three automakers coming to Washington last week to ask for aid: "I was surprised they did not have a better plan when they came before Congress," he said.

-- Frank Ahrens

The Ticker is Twittering!

By Frank Ahrens  |  November 24, 2008; 12:37 PM ET
Categories:  The Ticker  | Tags: Obama, economic team, stocks  
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