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White House Taps Emling for Senate Liaison Post

The White House has tapped John Emling, a veteran Bush administration and Capitol Hill staffer, to serve as its new top Senate liaison, sources confirmed Wednesday.

Emling, now a special assistant for legislative affairs, replaces Sean O’Hollaren, who left the administration earlier this month to return to the private sector, at the liaison operation. The move is expected to be announced as early as Thursday.

Emling’s résumé includes both Hill and White House experience, including having served as the chief of staff to now-House Chief Deputy Minority Whip Eric Cantor (R-Va.) and as a policy analyst for the Senate Republican Policy Committee. Emling has held several administration posts, including deputy assistant secretary for legislative affairs at the Treasury Department and assistant secretary of commerce for legislative and intergovernmental affairs.

“John’s appointment demonstrates the White House is serious about engaging with the Hill in a productive manner,” said a senior Republican Senate aide. “He is capable, and easy to work with.”

Emling joins a White House legislative affairs shop led by chief liaison Candida Wolff. The office serves as the primary link between the administration and Congress.

— Erin P. Billings