Gene Sperling, who was the Treasury Department's point person during negations on the proposal for raising the cap on member business loans, was named by President Obama today to be director of the National Economic Council (NEC).
Obama, who made the announcement at a manufacturer of energy efficient home products in Landover, Md., said that "few people bring the level of intelligence and work ethic that Gene has brought to every assignment he has been given.''
Sperling is currently the Treasury Department Counselor and has been one of the Democratic Party's key economic voices since the 1990s.
Last May, Sperling, who ran the NEC during the Clinton administration, announced last May led the Obama administration's support for a proposal that would have raised the cap on member business loans to as much as 27.5%. The proposal wasn't brought up in either the House or Senate but credit union industry officials promise to try again last year.
Sperling was also the administration's point person in negotiations over the extension of the Bush administration's tax cuts that Congress passed last month. He was also heavily involved in the small business lending bill, which included a fund that community banks can tap into for business lending that passed in October.
Sperling will succeed Larry Summers, who has returned too the Harvard University faculty.
Obama also named Jason Furman, currently one of the NEC's deputy directors, to be the council's principal deputy director.
Obama also named Katharine Abraham, a professor at the University of Maryland, to be a member of the Council of Economic Advisers.