Biden picks Jewish advisor Jeff Zients as new chief of staff

Despite constant praise by Biden and proven skillset, other progressive members of the Democratic Party not satisfied with appointment

i24NEWS|
U.S. President Joe Biden tapped Jewish advisor Jeff Zients to replace outgoing White House Chief of Staff Ron Klain, according to multiple reports.
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  • Zients has previously held multiple government positions for both the Biden and Obama administrations, including heading Washington's response team from 2021 to 2022.
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    Jeff Zients
    Jeff Zients
    Jeff Zients
    (Photo: AP)
    The advisor won "internal praise for his cross-government management skills" during his time with the pandemic response team, according to Politico.
    Zients is also known in Washington as one of the people who helped start the chain Call Your Mother, which is known for its Jewish deli-style food, serving Jewish favorites such as smoked salmon, bagels, and black-and-white cookies.
    The Call Your Mother founder is replacing Chief of Staff Ron Klain, who has been open about his Jewish identity and is an avid tweeter on Jewish issues and the fight against antisemitism.
    Zients and Klain have held close ties since their days in the Obama Administration, where Zients worked at the National Economic Council and Office of Management and Budget.
    Biden, who sees his new chief of staff as a “master implementer,” is likely to task his new right-hand man to manage the day-to-day workings of the White House, as other staffers begin to shift focus toward a possible 2024 reelection campaign.
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    Jeff Zients
    Jeff Zients
    Jeff Zients
    (Photo: AP)
    Despite being a Washington insider and admired by Biden, progressive members of the Democratic Party are not as satisfied with the appointment of Zients to his new role.
    “We have long argued for a ‘corporate crackdown’ on behaviors that violate federal laws and harm the American people in order for corporations to become richer. Those are the practices that have made Zients rich,” the Revolving Door Project's founder and director, Jeff Hauser, said in the statement.
    “We’re deeply worried that Zients will prevent the administration from exercising power righteously on behalf of an already cynical populace.”
    Other Democrats see the appointment as a missed opportunity to hire a more diverse candidate for the position, such as a woman or person of color.
    Klain had held the post since the inauguration of Biden, had previously acted as Biden’s Chief of Staff during Barack Obama’s first term, and has worked with Biden since he ran for president back in 1987.

    Reprinted with permission from i24NEWS.
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