Obama Names Cabinet-Level Posts - WSPA.com

Obama Names Cabinet-Level Posts

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President Barack Obama is announcing his picks for three Cabinet-level jobs Monday. Those nominees will head up the Energy Department, Environmental Protection Agency and budget office.

Obama says energy secretary nominee Ernest Moniz is a "brilliant scientist" who knows how the U.S. can produce more energy and grow the economy. The 69-year-old oversees MIT's Energy Initiative, a research group that focuses on innovative ways to produce power while curbing greenhouse gas emissions. Unlike outgoing Energy Secretary Steven Chu, he is also well-versed in the ways of Washington, having served as the Energy Department's undersecretary in the Clinton administration.

Moniz will work with EPA nominee Gina McCarthy, whom Obama calls a "straight-shooter." McCarthy has served under both Republicans and Democrats, and is known for a matter-of-fact approach appreciated by both businesses and environmental advocacy groups.

Since coming to Washington in 2009, McCarthy has been the most prominent defender of EPA policies. As the head of the air pollution division, she has been behind many of the agency's most controversial new rules - from placing the first limits on greenhouse gases on newly built power plants to the first-ever standard for toxic mercury pollution from burning coal for electricity.

The President also lauded Sylvia Mathews Burwell, his nominee for budget chief, as someone who not only knows how "to make the numbers add up" but also understands the need for strengthening the middle class.

Burwell is Washington veteran, having served in several posts during the Clinton administration, including deputy OMB director. She currently heads the Wal-Mart Foundation, the philanthropic arm of the retail giant, and previously served as president of the Gates Foundation's Global Development Program.

All three cabinet picks must now be confirmed by the Senate.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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