OECD Nominee Liddell Helms White House Transition Planning
Whoever wins the U.S. Presidential race – Trump or Biden – New Zealand-born Chris Liddell will be holding the keys to the front door of the White House in his role as head of the Presidential transition team.
Federal law requires both incumbent and challenger to prepare for taking office. In the event of a Republican win, this means planning its second term policy and senior appointments to Cabinet and key White House posts. If the Democrats win, an orderly transition of power is the required process.
Politico’s Nancy Cook reports that “One of the most organized and functional parts of the Trump White House these days is a surprising place — the West Wing office planning a potential presidential transition.
“Liddell is impressing business leaders, good government types and even former Obama aides with the ease of the White House’s transition planning. The former Obama transition official said he was “somewhat flabbergasted that they have maintained regular order for an administration that is not about regular order.”
“They are very, very focused on implementing the law and doing it by the book, and they are doing a good job,” David Marchick, director of the nonpartisan Center for Presidential Transition at the Partnership for Public Service, told Politico.
“Instead of on-the-fly decisions, staff infighting or governing by instinct — all hallmarks of Trump’s leadership style over the last four years — transition planning has happened quietly, efficiently and with little public fanfare,” writes Cook.
The White House has nominated Liddell to be the next Secretary General of the Paris-based Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). Liddell co-authored a manual on Presidential transitions after he headed the 600-person Romney Readiness Project in 2012.
“He knows how to run the machinery,” said Tim Adams, a former Romney transition official and a former top Treasury official to Politico. “Hopefully, they are leaving him alone and letting him do this job.”