TIMOTHY NOAH JANUARY 9, 2012
Two weeks ago I wondered whether Pete Rouse had Bill Daley, the chief of staff to President Obama who'd been disemboweled in November (ahem, I mean, relieved of some day-to-day duties so he could focus on the big picture) bound and gagged in the White House basement. If Rouse did, he let Daley out for a Christmas holiday in Chicago and Mexico with his children and grandchildren. When Daley came back he apparently took one look at the chair and the rope and the duct tape and decided this gig really wasn't for him. President Obama announced his resignation today. He will be replaced by White House budget chief Jack Lew. President Obama says he was surprised to hear that Daley wanted to leave. I would be distressed about the president's political smarts if I thought this were true, but I don't. Except for the president's recess appointments the other day, which I think were unconstitutional, the Obama White House has done better lately by being more confrontational than it did before by being more conciliatory, which was the Daley approach. He's a nice man, but he won't be missed.