Just a few days into his new/old job as the head of the Office of Management and Budget, Jacob “Jack” Lew said he was “happy to be back.”
Writing on the OMB White House blog, Lew, who previously served as the director of OMB from 1998 till 2001 during President Bill Clinton’s second term, said he and the “talented” OMB team were already hard at work on the 2012 budget.
He said the economic climate today is very different from the one the U.S. faced when Lew last left the Old Executive Office Building.
“A series of policy choices and the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression present us with a very different set of challenges than those posed by the forecast of surpluses at the end of the 1990s,” he wrote. “Now, we must put our nation back on a sustainable fiscal course in the medium-term and shore up our fiscal position for decades to come while spurring job creation and boosting the competitiveness of the U.S. in the global economy.”
Lew was most recently deputy secretary of state for management and resources, and the Senate finally confirmed him after a months-long stall by Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.), who placed a hold on his nomination.
On the OMB blog, Lew said managing the federal government is “particularly important during lean times. That is why we must make sure every dollar we spend has the desired impact and makes a difference.”
And, while he acknowledged is new to blogging, he said he expects to keep up the regular writing schedule.