President Obama is leaning toward choosing Denis McDonoughDenis Richard McDonoughEx-Obama chief of staff: Obama's Russia response was 'watered down' Former Obama officials launch advocacy group aimed at Trump's foreign policy Obama: Bannon, Breitbart shifted media narrative in 'powerful direction' MORE, currently a deputy national security adviser, as his next chief of staff, sources told Bloomberg.

McDonough, who worked on Obama's 2008 campaign, is considered deeply loyal to the president. He was a longtime congressional aide who worked for Obama when he was a freshman senator. McDonough also served as foreign policy adviser to then-Senate Democratic Leader Tom Daschle (S.D.) and legislative director to then-Sen. Ken Salazar (D-Colo.), who is now the secretary of the Interior.

He also worked as a senior fellow at the Center for American Progress, a liberal think tank, and joined the National Security Council in 2009.

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Another leading candidate is Ron Klain, former chief of staff to Vice President Joe BidenJoseph (Joe) Robinette BidenBiden, Corker honored with Freedom House human rights awards What's wrong with the Democratic Party? Just look at California Progressive rise is good news for Sanders, Warren MORE.

Obama is looking for a successor to current White House Chief of Staff Jack LewJacob (Jack) Joseph LewTech relishes role as Trump antagonist Overnight Tech: EU investigates Apple's Shazam buy | FCC defends GOP commissioners CPAC visit | Groups sue FTC for Facebook privacy records | A big quarter for Google Treasury pushes back on travel criticism with data on Obama-era costs MORE, the president's pick to be the next Treasury secretary.

McDonough graduated from St. John's University in Collegeville, Minn., where he played football, and has a master's degree in foreign affairs from Georgetown University. The 6-foot-3 McDonough often plays basketball with the president and, Bloomberg notes, he usually rode his bike from his home in Tacoma Park, Md., to work until a recent accident.

He would be Obama's fifth chief of staff.