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Podesta redux: guiding a second-term president

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NEDRA PICKLER | February 26, 2014 03:21 AM EST | AP


WASHINGTON (AP) — Longtime Washington insider John Podesta (poh-DEST'-uh) is developing a bit of a specialty for the presidents he's served — as a second-term problem solver.

Podesta was the last chief of staff in the Clinton White House and now he's helping shake President Barack Obama's West Wing out of its doldrums after a bruising 2013.

He has a one-year assignment as Obama's senior counselor, trying to turn things around before this year's midterm elections.

Podesta was described initially as specializing in implementation of the troubled health care law, along with White House organization and climate change. But his hand is being felt more broadly in a quickened pace in the West Wing, a push for executive action by the president, and his focus on the big picture of politics and policy.