Jay Carney to be new White House Press Secretary

In this image released by the White House, Vice President Joe Biden jokes with his Communications Director Jay Carney and White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs in his outer office in the West Wing of the White House in Washington, Tuesday, Oct. 13, 2009. (AP Photo/The White House, David Lienemann)
David Lienemann,AP Photo/The White House
Vice President Joe Biden jokes with Jay Carney, center, and Robert Gibbs in his outer office in the West Wing of the White House on Oct. 13, 2009. Chief of Staff Bill Daley announced Carney will replace Gibbs as White House press secretary.
AP Photo

Updated 4:59 p.m. Eastern Time

President Obama has chosen Jay Carney, a former Time magazine journalist and the communications director to Vice President Biden, to replace Robert Gibbs as White House press secretary.

Chief of Staff Bill Daley announced the appointment in an email to White House staff.

Carney, who will take over for Gibbs in holding press briefings with reporters at the White House, will be the administration's chief liaison with the public.

Gibbs, who announced he was stepping down on January 5th, is expected to leave in early or mid-February. While he is technically leaving the White House, Gibbs plans to serve as an outside adviser to the administration and to Mr. Obama's reelection campaign. Carney will likely have as close a relationship with the president as his predecessor, who first began working for Mr. Obama in 2004.

The ascension of Carney, 45, comes with other personnel changes, including the promotion of a pair of White House officials, scheduling and advance operations director Alyssa Mastromonaco and health care legislation liaison Nancy-Ann DeParle, to deputy chiefs of staff. Among the other personnel announcements was the appointment of veteran Democratic communications aide Stephanie Cutter as Deputy Senior Advisor.

Among those who are believed to have been in the running to replace Gibbs are Deputy Press Secretaries Bill Burton and Josh Earnest, Democratic strategist Karen Finney and Deputy Communications Director Jen Psaki.

Carney, who joined the White House in 2009, is a former Washington bureau chief for Time and is well acquainted with many members of the White House press corps. His appointment comes amid a number of changes in White House personell, including the replacement of chief of staff Rahm Emanuel with Bill Daley and the replacement of White House adviser David Axelrod with David Plouffe.

During a 2006 interview on C-SPAN, Carney said of the White House Press Secretary position: "it's a tricky job. I'm sure I wouldn't be any good at it."