Simas heads up new office at White House

The White House on Friday announced David Simas, a senior adviser to President Obama who managed the healthcare rollout, will head up a new post at the White House: Office of Political Strategy and Outreach. 

The White House created the role on the heels of an outcry from Democrats in recent months that there was no political point of contact at the White House, especially as midterm elections draw nearer. 


It also comes amid restructuring in the West Wing after a lackluster year for Obama with very few legislative wins, a disastrous healthcare rollout and controversy with the National Security Agency's surveillance program.

Recently, the White House brought in John Podesta, who served as chief of staff to former President Clinton, along with Phil Schiliro, a trusted hand who ran the White House office of legislative affairs at the start of Obama's presidency. 

The new office, headed up by Simas, will coordinate the White House political strategy and outreach activities. It will also serve as the main point of contact for national, state and local political groups, according to a senior administration official. The office will also work with constituent and political groups as well as plan and craft big-picture strategies to achieve White House goals, the senior official added. 

Simas will also be the voice of reason on what administration officials are allowed to do on the campaign trail. 

Additionally, the office will "advise and assist" Obama and keep him informed about "the current political environment," the official said.