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American rescue plan

Biden reportedly taps economist Gene Sperling to oversee implementation of $1.9 trillion relief package

President Biden is hiring Gene Sperling, director of the National Economic Council in the Obama and Clinton administrations, to oversee implementation of the multifaceted $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan, The Washington Post and other news organizations report. Sperling, who also served as an economic adviser to Biden during the campaign, was also a top candidate for director of the Office of Management and Budget after nominee Neera Tanden withdrew her name, Politico reports, but that job is now widely expected to go to Biden's nominee for deputy OMB director, Shalanda Young.

Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, and their spouses are fanning out across the U.S. this week to begin promoting the ARP, which passed last week with high public support but zero votes from congressional Republicans. "Sperling's role could be crucial to the public's assessment of the relief package and ultimately the Biden presidency," the Post reports. "With a flood of nearly $2 trillion in government spending, problems and mistakes are always a possibility, and Republicans will be on the lookout for examples of misspent funds."

Biden served a similar role when he was vice president, overseeing implementation of former President Barack Obama's $787 billion economic recovery plan, the Post notes, and he "often cites that experience when discussing the importance of accountability when stimulus funds are spent."