Obama Administration reaches out to Wall Street

Scott Tong Jan 7, 2011
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Obama Administration reaches out to Wall Street

Scott Tong Jan 7, 2011
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TEXT OF STORY

Today President Obama is expected to announce a replacement for Larry Summers, the head of the National Economic Council. And word is the new guy will be Gene Sperling. If that name rings a bell, it’s because he served in the Clinton administration. Sperling has also done some consulting on Wall Street. And some are say this move is part of a strategy to make nice with the business community.

Marketplace’s Scott Tong reports from Washington.


SCOTT TONG: With Gene Sperling’s appointment, it’s back to the past. He ran the economic council in the Clinton Administration, then spun out the revolving door to Goldman Sachs among other jobs, and now spins back. Similar story with new White House chief of staff William Daley; the ex – Clinton commerce secretary took a Beltway time out at JPMorgan Chase. Political analyst Norm Ornstein at the American Enterprise Institute thinks the White House could benefit by engaging Wall Street a bit more.

NORM ORNSTEIN: Financial institutions basically owe their very existence in many ways to what Obama has done. But they have been turned off by the rhetoric, and by a couple of the policy proposals.

The White House will need to turn things back on with the business community over the next two years: closer ties would help ratify a trade deal with Korea, boost factory jobs, and implement new bank reforms. Still, getting too close to Big Business could hurt the President’s credibility, says Ellen Miller at the Sunlight Foundation. The group pushes more open government.

ELLEN MILLER: The President has made such a big deal about limiting the influence of special interests in his administration. And he has done that.

At least, she says, for now.

In Washington I’m Scott Tong for Marketplace

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