Report: Geithner wanted Hillary Clinton to replace him last year

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Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, speaks as Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner listens
Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, speaks as Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner listens during a news conference about new sanctions the U.S. is taking to increase pressure on Iran, at the State Department in Washington, Nov. 21, 2011.
AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais
The Washington Post reported Thursday that in 2011, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner wanted out and he tried to convince the White House that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton should replace him.

According to officials who spoke to the Post, the White House was not keen on the idea for a number of reasons. First, according to the report, there were leftover tensions from the 2008 Democratic primary fight between Clinton's and President Obama's staffers. Another was the fact that Mr. Obama "didn't want (Geithner) to go."

The Post explains that Geithner wanted to leave his job because his family was moving to New York and he didn't want to trek up and down the northeast corridor every weekend. Geithner knew he would need to find someone who not only had experience dealing with the power brokers on Wall Street, but who the Senate would also accept as a replacement. His solution was Clinton.

"She'd never been a banker, but as a senator from New York, Clinton had cultivated many relationships within the financial sector. Some of them had been longing for the kind of attention they had received from her and her husband, former president Bill Clinton, but rarely got from President Obama," officials told the Post.

In the end, both Geithner and Clinton stayed at their respective posts, although, in January, Geithner told Bloomberg News that he does not expect Mr. Obama to ask him for a second term if elected. Last year, Clinton told CNN's Wolf Blitzer that she is also uninterested in staying at the State Department past the end of President Obama's first term.

The Post said both the Treasury Department and the White House declined to comment on the report.

  • Chris Leyden

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