September 22, 2020

The battle to define the Biden economic team, explained

The Biden team’s planning for a hypothetical administration is already well underway. And on questions of economic policy, the transition effort is already becoming a locus of a fight about what a Democratic White House should look like. 

On one side stand progressives, urging the creation of something like an ideological social democratic party. They want to draw a firm line between Democrats and the business community — leaning sharply against selecting personnel who’ve spent the Trump years working in the private sector in favor of career public sector and public interest workers.

On the other side are the forces of business as usual in the Democratic Party, which has traditionally been a big tent, with plenty of participation by people with close ties to industry. Here you have people like Steve Ricchetti, who worked in the Clinton White House, then became a lobbyist, then went back to the White House then went back to lobbying then became chief of staff in Biden’s vice presidency, then went back to lobbying before becoming chair of Biden’s 2020 campaign.

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