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Political Notebook

3 nominees named for senior jobs at Treasury

Reuters / March 9, 2009
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WASHINGTON - The White House named three nominees yesterday for senior jobs at the Treasury Department, which still is trying to fill out its top ranks while dealing with a financial crisis.

The three nominees were announced just days after two contenders for more senior posts withdrew their names from consideration.

A Treasury spokesman said the Obama administration nonetheless was ahead of prior administrations in getting its top Treasury officials in place and said a perception that its work was being hindered was incorrect.

The nominees were:

  • Lawyer David S. Cohen, for assistant Treasury secretary, terrorist financing. Cohen, who worked at Treasury previously, was until recently a partner in the law firm WilmerHale

  • Economist Alan Krueger for assistant secretary, economic policy. Krueger taught at Princeton University and is widely published on a variety of economic issues;

  • Financial specialist Kim Wallace for assistant secretary, legislative affairs. Wallace previously was a managing director for the Washington research group at Barclays Capital and before that spent 14 years at now-defunct Lehman Brothers Group.

    The positions require Senate confirmation.

    Defending US voting rights is top priority, Holder says
    SELMA, Ala. - The US government must make a top priority of defending the Voting Rights Act, which guarantees the right of ethnic minorities to cast ballots, Attorney General Eric Holder said yesterday.

    The Supreme Court is reviewing a ruling that upholds a provision of the act under which 16 states and some counties, mainly in the South, are prevented from making changes to their voting laws without federal approval.

    Plaintiffs challenging a renewal of the act say times have changed, blacks are no longer excluded from voting, and the act amounts to unwarranted interference in state affairs.

    "We must commit ourselves to continue to defend the Voting Rights Act that is under attack," Holder said.

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