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White House chief of staff resigning

(Xinhua)

08:32, January 10, 2012

WASHINGTON, Jan. 9 (Xinhua) -- White House Chief of Staff William Daley is resigning, and he is being replaced by Jacob Lew, the White House budget director, according to the Chicago Tribune, a paper from Daley's hometown, on Monday.

The personnel change at the start of the election year is expected to be announced later in the day. The White House said President Barack Obama is to make a statement in the State Dining Room at 3 p.m.

The report said Daley gave his letter of resignation to the president in a private meeting in the Oval Office last week, recounting the administration's successes of his one year on the job and saying it was time for him to return to his hometown of Chicago.

The official leadership shift is likely to take place at the end of the month, giving Lew time to complete the administration's budget proposal while Daley leads the team through the State of the Union address this month.

The Chicago Tribune report said after winning an end-of-year victory in the extension of the payroll tax cut, Daley went to Mexico and to Chicago to celebrate Christmas and spend time with his wife and grandchildren. When he came back, he told Obama he had decided to leave, taking the president by surprise.

Officials said Daley suggested to Obama that Lew be appointed as his replacement. Lew served as budget director under former president Bill Clinton, and as deputy director of the Department of State under Hillary Clinton before taking over as the director of Office of Management and Budget at the White House, which oversees the budget.

Obama chose Daley, who came from a Chicago political dynasty, to be his chief of staff in January 2011, replacing Rahm Emanuel, who is now Chicago's mayor. Daley served as commerce secretary under Clinton and ran Al Gore's 2000 presidential campaign. He's the brother of recently retired Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley and the youngest son of former Chicago Mayor Richard J. Daley.

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