Obama to Tap Goolsbee as Chair of Council of Economic Advisers

Sep 9, 2010 10:58pm

Administration sources tell ABC News that at the start of his press conference Friday morning, President Obama will formally announced that he is appointing University of Chicago economist Austan Goolsbee to be chair of his Council of Economic Advisers.

Goolsbee, 41, has already been confirmed by the Senate to serve as one of the three economists on the CEA; President Obama has the prerogative to appoint the chair. The former chair, Christina Romer, departed last week, returning to teach at the University of California at Berkeley. Goolsbee is also chief economist for the Presidential Economic Recovery Advisory Board.

The 1991 Yale grad is popular in the administration and appreciated for his communications skills, evidenced by his frequent cable TV bookings, his former hosting of a show on the History Channel, his former column in the New York Times and his award as Funniest Celebrity in Washington in 2009.

In a 2007 column, conservative George F. Will wrote, “Goolsbee no doubt has lots of dubious ideas — he is, after all, a Democrat — about how government can creatively fiddle with the market's allocation of wealth and opportunity. But he seems to be the sort of person — amiable, empirical and reasonable — you would want at the elbow of a Democratic president, if such there must be.”

Goolsbee’s appointment will mean that all of the president’s top economic advisers — Goolsbee, National Economic Council director Larry Summers, Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner — are white men who graduated from Ivy League schools. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

Once called "Elliott Ness meets Milton Friedman" by comedian Jon Stewart, Goolsbee considers himself a data driven economist known for his expertise in tax policy and high-tech industries. He received his Ph.D from MIT and was the youngest full professor at the University of Chicago when the university deigned to give him tenure at age 31.

Readers of this blog might remember the minor kerfuffle he was part of during the Democratic president campaign regarding just what exactly he told Canadian diplomats regarding then-Sen. Obama’s public pronunciations regarding NAFTA.  (For the record, if in fact Goolsbee told the Canadians not to sweat it, he has indeed been proven correct.)

The Daily Show With Jon Stewart Mon – Thurs 11p / 10c
Exclusive – Austan Goolsbee Extended Interview Pt. 1
www.thedailyshow.com
Daily Show Full Episodes Political Humor Tea Party
The Daily Show With Jon Stewart Mon – Thurs 11p / 10c
Exclusive – Austan Goolsbee Extended Interview Pt. 2

www.thedailyshow.com

Daily Show Full Episodes Political Humor Tea Party

-Jake Tapper

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