The White House brings in Bruce Reed
I've not paid much attention to the resignation of Ron Klain, Chief of Staff to the Vice President. But now that Biden has named Bruce Reed to replace him, I'm a bit more interested.
Reed -- who is pictured at right, standing alongside Gene Sperling -- is the keeper of the flame for the Third Way technocracy that flowered in the Clinton years. He was chief executive of the Democratic Leadership Council, head of the Domestic Policy Council in the Clinton White House and executive director of the fiscal commission. He's known as one of the smartest policy minds on the center-left, but "center-left" should really be in bold type in that sentence: He's not just a policy wonk, but a policy entrepreneur, and his long-term project has been persuading Democrats to chart a more centrist, market-friendly approach.
According to the news release, Reed's full title will be "Assistant to the President and Chief of Staff to the Vice President," and it's very easy to imagine Reed having a substantial role in the White House's daily policy discussions. In fact, it's hard to imagine him not having such a role. Reed knows how to navigate the bureaucracy, he's well-respected both inside the White House and in Washington more broadly, and the administration wouldn't bring in one of the most important and experienced Democratic policy advisers of the last 30 years if it didn't plan to put his expertise to use.
Reed's role further doubles down on the decision to install Bill Daley as chief of staff. Daley, who joined the board of the DLC-esque Third Way last year, is the organizational incarnation of Reed: Where Reid was the most successful policy adviser associated with the moderate wing of the Democratic Party, Daley was one of the most successful managers associated with the moderate wing of the Democratic Party. That they've both been named to crucial positions in the past few weeks -- as has Clinton's former NEC director, Gene Sperling -- suggests that the administration has decided to make a clear shift toward the types of policy and strategic thinking that came to define the Clinton presidency.
Photo credit: By Susan Biddle/The Washington Post
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