New Delhi (NVI): President-elect Joe Biden has named Ron Klain, a veteran Democratic operative and a decades-long confidant, to be his White House chief of staff, taking the first step towards putting in place his administration’s senior leadership.
Klain is one of Biden’s most trusted campaign advisers and was long seen as the most likely pick for the top job. He previously served as chief of staff to Vice President Al Gore during the Clinton administration and Biden during his tenure as President Barack Obama’s vice president.
“Ron has been invaluable to me over the many years that we have worked together, including as we rescued the American economy from one of the worst downturns in our history in 2009 and later overcame a daunting public health emergency in 2014,” Biden said in a statement.
“His deep, varied experience and capacity to work with people all across the political spectrum is precisely what I need in a White House chief of staff as we confront this moment of crisis and bring our country together again,” he added.
Klain said, “It’s the honor of a lifetime to serve President-elect Biden in this role, and I am humbled by his confidence.”
He also tweeted, “I’ve seen so many kind wishes tonight on this website. Thank you – and I’m sorry I can’t reply to each of you. I’m honored by the President-elect’s confidence and will give my all to lead a talented and diverse team in a Biden-Harris WH.”
I’ve seen so many kind wishes tonight on this website. Thank you – and I’m sorry I can’t reply to each of you.
I’m honored by the President-elect’s confidence and will give my all to lead a talented and diverse team in a Biden-Harris WH.
— Ronald Klain (@RonaldKlain) November 12, 2020
Notably, Klain brings unique expertise to this moment defined by the ongoing coronavirus crisis. The Democratic operative was appointed by then-President Obama to lead the response to the Ebola crisis in 2014.
Klain’s experience leading the Obama administration’s response to that public health threat is seen as an asset.
Meanwhile, advisers have said that the president-elect will announce other top White House staff in the coming days.