When Tim Geithner mulled leaving his job as Treasury Secretary last year, he already had a successor in mind: the Secretary of State.
Geithner argued Hillary Clinton would make the perfect replacement, the Washington Post reports, citing two current and one former administration official. The reason was twofold: Clinton could clear through the confirmation hearings easily enough, and her time as a New York Senator meant she already had the relationships necessary to win the approval of Wall Street.
Clinton reportedly showed “cautious interest” in the position too, but the talks fell apart once the debt ceiling debate intensified.
High-profile officials in need of replacements often look to the Clinton. Before President Obama ultimately nominated Jim Yong Kim to head the World Bank earlier this year, Hillary Clinton was reportedly considered a candidate.
Geithner, a key figure in the debt ceiling negotiations, signaled to White House officials last June that he planned to leave his post once the debt limit debate was resolved, citing the difficult commute between Washington and New York where his son planned to finish high school, Bloomberg reported at the time. He ultimately decided to stay on for the time being.
If Geithner's to be trusted, his days at the Treasury may be numbered anyway. The Treasury Secretary told Bloomberg’s Trish Regan in January he didn’t expect to stay on even if Obama wins a second term. Perhaps Clinton has loftier goals in mind; the Secretary of State appeared the clear frontrunner for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination during a recent Iowa caucus poll.
Geithner is the only member of Obama’s original economic team still in place and the president reportedly fought hard to keep him. Obama went to such great lengths as to even pull Geithner’s wife aside at his birthday party to try and convince her of the need for her husband to stay on, according to a November New York Times report.