White House top economic advisor Brian Deese to depart mid-February
White House National Economic Council Director Brian Deese will officially leave the White House later this month in a long-awaited departure.
In a statement Thursday morning, President Joe Biden praised Deese for his work on implementing his economic policies.
"Brian's work was critical to the passage of the most significant economic agenda in generations," the president said.
"Brian has a unique ability to translate complex policy challenges into concrete actions that improve the lives of American people," he added. He has helped steer my economic vision into reality, and managed the transition of our historic economic recovery to steady and stable growth."
Deese's departure leaves a hole in Biden's economic team as the president looks to implement the next steps of his economic agenda for the next two years while navigating a fragile economic landscape.
Federal Reserve Vice Chair Lael Brainard is among those being considered by the president to replace Deese, while a Politico report earlier this week said Jared Bernstein will likely be tapped to lead the president's Council of Economic Advisors.
In a statement to Yahoo Finance, White House Deputy Press Secretary Emilie Simons said there was "no decision on either of these positions and any reporting to the contrary is inaccurate."
Biden is restocking his economic team as the Federal Reserve continues to raise interest rates, the job market remains strong, and inflation is cooling, but the economy has slowed.
In a speech last week, Biden criticized House Republicans' economic plan, saying it would worsen inflation. He warned that Republicans would look to implement cuts to Social Security and Medicare.
The reshuffle of Biden's economic team also comes as the administration gears up for a protracted fight with House Republicans over the debt ceiling. Biden met with House Speaker Kevin McCarthy on Wednesday for their first one-on-one meeting on raising the nation's borrowing limit.
House Republicans are demanding spending cuts in exchange for raising the limit, while the White House has said it won't negotiate over the debt ceiling.
McCarthy told reporters Wednesday there's an opportunity to come to an agreement, while the White House said the two had a "frank and straightforward dialogue." The statement said the president looks would welcome a separate discussion with congressional leaders about how to reduce the deficit.
Previously, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen ruled out the idea of minting a trillion-dollar coin and has said it shouldn't be assumed the Treasury can prioritize debt payments.
Asked about the debt ceiling on Wednesday, Fed Chair Powell said there was "only one way forward here."
"And that is for Congress to raise the debt ceiling," he said, adding, "Any deviations from that path would be highly risky, and that no one should assume that the Fed can protect the economy from the consequences of failing to act in a timely manner."
Powell said the Fed will monitor money market conditions carefully.
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