Obama’s Top Economic Adviser To Leave The White House

Gene Sperling, President Barack Obama’s top economic adviser, will leave his post at the end of the year, the White House announced Friday.

Sperling has served as the director of the National Economic Adviser and will be replaced in January of 2014 by Jeffrey Zients, a former director of the Office of Management and Budget. 

Obama praised Sperling in a statement Friday.

“Gene’s relentless work ethic, sharp intellect and ability to work across the aisle have been instrumental in our efforts to build a better bargain for the middle class and reduce the deficit while also protecting the most vulnerable,” Obama said. “I want to thank Gene and his family for their service and I look forward to having his counsel for the rest of the year.”

The adviser found himself at the center of a contentious story earlier this year when famed journalist Bob Woodward suggested that Sperling had threatened him over the course of his reporting on a story. Politico ultimately published the email exchanges between Woodward and Sperling, revealing the actual contents of the messages to be quite tame.