White House Budget Director Will Step Down

Surprise departure precedes expected battle over spending
By M. Morris,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 19, 2007 3:46 PM CDT
President Bush, center, announces his choice of former Iowa Rep. Jim Nussle, right, to replace outgoing White House Budget Director Rob Portman, left, Tuesday, June 19, 2007, in the Roosevelt Room of...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – The White House budget director will leave his post this summer after just over a year in office. Rob Portman departs the OMB at an awkward time, with Congress gearing up for a bruising fight over next year's federal budget. He enjoys bipartisan support that his successor, onetime Iowa congressman Jim Nussle, can't count on, the Washington Post reports.

Majority leader Steny Hoyer set the tone, praising ex-congressman Portman as "one of the best members I have ever served with" and refusing to say much more about his replacement than "Mr. Nussle is a Dane." Portman told the Cincinnati Enquirer he'll weigh running for governor in 2010 and senator in 2012—and, yes, spend more time with his family.