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Hillary's Wing-men

The Times nails down Hillary's deputy at State--and the news is that it's not one deputy but two:

Mrs. Clinton is recruiting Jacob J. Lew, the budget director under President Bill Clinton, as one of two deputies, according to people close to the Obama transition team. Mr. Lew’s focus, they said, will be on increasing the share of financing that goes to the diplomatic corps. He and James B. Steinberg, a deputy national security adviser in the Clinton administration, are to be Mrs. Clinton’s chief lieutenants.

The other interesting nugget in the piece, related to Lew's somewhat unexpected emergence at State, is that:

[Hillary] is also trying to carve out a bigger role for the State Department in economic affairs, where the Treasury has dominated during the Bush years. She has sought advice from Laura D’Andrea Tyson, an economist who headed Mr. Clinton’s Council of Economic Advisers. ...

Mrs. Clinton’s push for a more vigorous economic team, one of her advisers said, stems from her conviction that the State Department needs to play a part in the recovery from the global financial crisis.

It's not entirely clear to me how that would play out given the strong personalities and rich talent pool on Obama's economic team. But my hunch is that Lew could have something to do with it. Lew was one of Bill Clinton's OMB directors, as the article points out. More recently, he was rumored to be Obama's choice to run the National Economic Council until being nudged aside for Larry Summers. That might suggest the makings of an institutional rivalry, except that Lew is by all accounts one of the nicest, least sharp-elbowed guys you'll ever meet. Likewise, Tim Geithner, the incoming Treasury Secretary, has never been particularly turf-conscious.

--Noam Scheiber