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Report: John Bryson to be named Commerce Secretary by Obama

John Bryson, President of Edison International, smiles before speaking during a conference sponsored by The Electric Drive Transportation Association.

BOB MOON: Some breaking news out of Washington this hour: The AP reports President Obama is expected to nominate a new Commerce Secretary today. The story names businessman John Bryson as the designated replacement for outgoing Secretary Gary Locke.

For some background, let's turn to Marketplace's Gregory Warner. Good morning, what can you tell us about Mr. Bryson?

GREGORY WARNER: Well, Mr. Bryson is the former CEO of Edison International. It's a California-based energy company. He's also served on corporate boards of Boeing, and Walt Disney. But he's also got an extensive background in environmental issues. So he was the co-founder of the Natural Resources Defense Council, and served on a UN advisory group on energy and climate change.

MOON: And what kind of task is he going to be walking into?

WARNER: Well, the job of a Commerce Secretary is as much to boost trade and exports overseas as it is a means for the business community here at home to have the president's ear. So, President Obama not bucking the trend here. Like other presidents he's appointed a very business-friendly person to the job. And in that, trying to shore up his relationship with the business community. But it is significant that Brysons's expertise is energy and environmental issues because those are going to be huge issues in the coming decade. Of course, we all know about oil and oil prices, but there's also China's growing solar business. And environmental issues in China will be key to work out so, you know, Bryson's got a full plate.

MOON: Marketplace's Gregory Warner. Thanks.

WARNER: Thanks a lot.

About the author

Gregory Warner is a senior reporter covering the economics and business of healthcare for the entire Marketplace portfolio.

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