Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner plans to stay until early next year to help the Obama administration forge a deal with lawmakers to avert the looming fiscal crisis, the White House said on Friday.
The Obama administration and Congress has less than two months to soften the blow from the "fiscal cliff" or $600 billion worth of tax hikes and spending cuts that will be sucked out of the economy next year if Washington fails to act. "Geithner has indicated that he will stay on through inauguration and he will be, obviously, a key participant in the negotiations around the so-called fiscal cliff issues," a White House spokesperson told reporters.
Geithner has long said he planned to step down if President Barack Obama won a second term, after spending grueling time dealing with the 2007-09 financial crisis first as the head of the New York Fed and then as Obama's Treasury chief. After helping the White House negotiate last year's budget deal to raise the debt limit and cut the deficit, Geithner won over many Republicans who viewed him as reasonable and willing to listen to their concerns.