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More Bad News For Geithner

The Associated Press reports that Annette Nazareth, Timothy Geithner's not-yet-official selection as deputy Treasury secretary, has withdrawn from consideration. Given that she used to be the chief enforcement official* at the SEC, her selection would have signaled a get-tough regulatory approach at Treasury--and make the case for giving the department added regulatory powers under the inevitable, impending SEC/CFTC/OCC/alphabet soup restructuring. (Though, if he's smart, he'll go after Stephen Cutler, Nazareth's predecessor at the SEC and an absolutely brilliant regulatory enforcement mind.)

The AP also notes, again, that Geithner has yet to make nominations to fill even one of his top 17 deputy posts. This anecdote is particularly frightening:

 At a Senate hearing Thursday about failed insurance giant American International Group Inc.--which has received four separate bailouts totaling more than $170 billion--Sen. Chris Dodd said he had asked Treasury for someone to appear, but that no one was available.

"I am not pleased that we don't have someone here from Treasury to explain what their role in this is," Dodd said.


--Clay Risen

* Ruh-roh again. Nazareth wasn't head of enforcement. She was director of market regulations. My apologies.