WH to jump start prep for next president soon

Greg Nash

The White House will “aggressively” begin planning for a transition to the next president in early spring, chief of staff Denis McDonoughDenis McDonoughObama: I curse more than I should The Hill's 12:30 Report Benghazi Report and Hillary: What it means for Philadelphia MORE said Wednesday. 

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“I would anticipate rolling out pretty aggressively by early spring,” McDonough told reporters at a breakfast sponsored by the Christian Science Monitor. “Right now, it’s really just preparation.” 

Aides are “getting a lot of the paper and process in place,” the chief of staff said. President Obama has not tapped an official to head the transition, and McDonough has yet to reach out to cabinet officials about turning over the keys to the next administration. 

McDonough’s comments offer a glimpse into the lengthy process of the transition of power at the White House; Obama still has one year and eight days left in office. Still, it’s a practical example of how little time the president will have to complete the unfinished business of his presidency. 

The chief of staff said the administration would have to work quickly to get a criminal justice reform bill passed in Congress and accomplish other goals, such as expanding the number of Syrian refugees admitted to the United States and stamping out malaria.