White House counsel Craig leaving post

The White House's top lawyer's exit had long been rumored; it's finally happening

Published November 13, 2009 3:25PM (EST)

Rumors that White House counsel Greg Craig hadn't made many friends over the months he's been on the job, and that he was on his way out, have been floating around for some time now. He and other White House officials have repeatedly denied those rumors, but on Friday they were confirmed: Craig has resigned, and Bob Bauer, who'd served as the Obama campaign's lead attorney, will be replacing him.

“Greg Craig is a close friend and trusted advisor who tackled many tough challenges as White House Counsel,” President Obama said in a statement. “Because of Greg’s leadership, we have confirmed the first Latina justice on the Supreme Court, set the toughest ethics standards for any administration in history, and ensured that we are keeping the nation secure in a manner that is consistent with our laws and our values. I’m indebted to Greg not only for leading the Counsel’s office but for his many decades of service to this country as well. He has been a huge asset in the White House, and he will be missed. I will continue to call on him for advice in the years ahead.”

Craig had come under fire for, among other things, what was seen as his mishandling of the president's efforts to close the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay.

By Alex Koppelman

Alex Koppelman is a staff writer for Salon.

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