President Obama formally nominated Sen. Judd Gregg (R-N.H.) to become Secretary of Commerce, citing the desire for a bipartisan approach to the nation's economic problems.

"With the stakes this high, we cannot afford to get trapped in the same old partisan gridlock," Obama said in remarks announcing Gregg's appointment. Though noting the obvious political differences in the past between the New Hampshire Republican and the president, Obama hailed Gregg as "one of the Republican Party's most respected voices."

"This is not a time for partisan," Gregg said in a Tuesday morning appearance alongside Obama and Vice President Biden. "This is not a time when we should stand in our ideological corners and yell at each other."

Gregg, who thanked New Hampshire Gov. John Lynch (D) for agreeing to name a Republican successor to the Senate (ensuring stability in the body's partisan balance), said that he felt an obligation to say "yes" to Obama.

"I can think of no finer stewart of our nation's commerce," Obama added.