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Obama Picks Foreign Policy Aide as Chief of Staff

7:18 PM, Jan 25, 2013   |    comments
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Denis McDonough with President Obama

ASHINGTON (AP) - President Barack Obama's pick of Denis McDonough to be his next chief of staff means a longtime confidant and unflappable ally of Obama will be his gatekeeper during his second term.

Clinton-era chief of staff John Podesta, who worked with McDonough in the Senate, says Obama trusts McDonough implicitly - perhaps more than anyone else in the White House.

McDonough has served as the president's deputy national security adviser. Obama's aides describe him as a hard and loyal worker with vast foreign policy expertise. Former co-workers say he's skilled at both policy and politics, known for putting a human touch on a demanding job.

But McDonough has little experience with domestic policy. High on the agenda for the start of Obama's second term are fiscal showdowns, immigration and gun control.

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