WASHINGTON — President-elect Joe Biden is nominating Denis McDonough, that was chairman Barack Obama’s White house chief that staff, as secretary of the room of Veterans Affairs, a sprawling firm that has actually presented organizational difficulties for both parties end the years.

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Biden is proceeding to to make reservation his incoming administration with prominent members that Obama’s team, and McDonough is the latest choice, follow to a person familiar with the selection. This person was not authorized to talk about the nomination prior to the official announcement and also spoke on condition of anonymity.

Biden was intended to do the official announcement Friday, along with his nominations the Ohio Rep. Marcia Fudge to run the room of Housing and also Urban Development, Katherine Tai as U.S. Profession representative and Tom Vilsack as agriculture secretary. Vilsack filled that same role during Obama’s 2 terms.


Although Biden has insisted his management will not simply be a retread the Obama’s presidency, he is bringing ago numerous acquainted faces. His team has protected the moves together a nod towards experience and also the should hit the ground running in tackling the pressing issues facing the country across many fronts.

McDonough is an proficient manager who was cook of staff throughout Obama’s 2nd term. McDonough was previously Obama’s deputy nationwide security adviser, including during the navy SEAL raid in 2011 that killed al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden, and was a longtime conference staffer.


McDonough was credited with helping Obama shot to leg divides on Capitol Hill, including roughly one of his most substantial second-term legislative branch achievements: the Veterans choice Act. The legislation, because that which president Donald Trump tries to take it credit, gave former company members more options to seek care and also the VA secretary much more authority come fire underperforming staffers.

The bill came around following exposes throughout the Obama administration into mismanagement at some VA hospitals and mounting complaints through advocacy groups. As chief the staff, McDonough was additionally deeply involved in an review of VA leadership after the scandals, which resulted in the ouster that the department’s secretary.

Biden is balancing plenty of priorities as he fills out his Cabinet, consisting of making an excellent on his pledge to have a diverse group of optimal advisers. That’s created some tensions over peak jobs, including agriculture secretary.

Allies the Fudge made no secret of their desire for she to lead the department, offered its monitor of food stamps and also other programs intended to deal with food insecurity — one of her longtime priorities. Instead, Biden went with Vilsack, a longtime friend and also advocate for Democrats paying an ext attention come rural America.

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A transition official said Vilsack and also Fudge spoke Wednesday to lay the groundwork because that cooperation in between their two agencies on those and other initiatives.