White House Counsel Bob Bauer will resign at the end of June to focus on Obama’s reelection bid, the White House announced Thursday. Principal Deputy Counsel Kathryn Ruemmler will take over as the administration’s top lawyer.
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Bauer will return to his former law firm Perkins Coie, and he will serve as general counsel for the 2012 campaign, general counsel to the Democratic National Committee, and Obama’s personal lawyer.
“Bob is a good friend and has served as a trusted advisor for many years,” Obama said in a statement. “Bob was a critical member of the White House team. He has exceptional judgment, wisdom, and intellect, and he will continue to be one of my close advisors.”
Ruemmler joined the administration when Obama took office in 2009 as the principal associate deputy attorney general at the Department of Justice. In January 2010, she moved over to the White House Counsel’s Office to serve as Bauer’s deputy.
“Kathy is an outstanding lawyer with impeccable judgment,” Obama said in the statement.
Before joining the administration, Ruemmler was a litigation partner in the Washington, D.C., office of the law firm Latham & Watkins for two years. She came to Lathan & Watkins after six years as a federal prosecutor, including a co-lead role in the prosecution of former Enron executives. She previously worked in the White House Counsel’s Office from 2000 to 2001 as associate counsel to President Clinton.
Ruemmler received her J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center and her B.A. from the University of Washington. She clerked for Timothy K. Lewis on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit.