August 04, 2011

Almost No Comment, Except for the Vomiting

NYT, August 3, 2011:
Timothy F. Geithner, the Treasury secretary and dean of President Obama’s economic team, is expected to stay through the president’s term after intense White House pressure, according to officials familiar with the discussions.

But Mr. Geithner has not yet notified the White House of his intentions, and family considerations could still win out, advisers say.


Mr. Obama and his chief of staff, William M. Daley, have been urging Mr. Geithner to stay, administration officials say, not only for continuity when the economy has weakened and to avoid an all-but-certain confirmation fight in the Senate over a successor, but also because Mr. Obama has developed a close rapport with Mr. Geithner. [Vomiting.]


Mr. Geithner has been working at a breakneck pace since the early days of the financial crisis in 2007. Formerly president of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, he has been among the three top stewards of the economy, along with Ben S. Bernanke, the Federal Reserve chairman, and the Bush administration Treasury secretary, Henry M. Paulson.

“He’s had a tough job during a tough time, and I think he’s really slogged through and made some really tough choices,” said Senator Mark Warner, Democrat of Virginia. “I can understand why he might want to cash it in." [More vomiting.]


From the start, Mr. Geithner’s biggest critics have been on the left. But Jared Bernstein, a former member of the administration’s economic team and a liberal economist close to some of the critics, said: “To the extent people vilify Tim as only caring about banks, they’re way off. He’s always understood that Main Street depends on credit from Wall Street, and I know for a fact that he advocated the steps we took for that reason, not to preserve anyone’s capital or profits. I’ve actually heard him say some pretty nasty stuff about those guys." [Vomiting of such violence that it is life-threatening.]

The prospects of being drawn into an election-year confirmation brawl could deter some who might be considered as Mr. Geithner’s successor. Among those named by people familiar with administration thinking are Jamie Dimon, the chief executive of JPMorgan Chase; Jeffrey R. Immelt, the chairman of General Electric and of Mr. Obama’s Council on Jobs and Competitiveness; Roger Altman, a deputy Treasury secretary in the Clinton administration; and Erskine Bowles, a former White House chief of staff to President Bill Clinton and co-chairman of Mr. Obama’s fiscal commission in 2010.

Terminal vomiting.

Then, dea