By Sabrina Siddiqui and Tarini Parti 

WILMINGTON, Del. -- President-elect Joe Biden formally introduced his picks for key economic positions in remarks on Tuesday, emphasizing their experience and diverse backgrounds as the country weathers the economic fallout from the coronavirus pandemic.

Flanked by the people he has chosen for top economic roles, Mr. Biden said during the appearance in Wilmington, Del., that his team was working on a plan to revitalize the U.S. economy and help the nation recover from what he dubbed "the worst jobs crisis in history."

The president-elect called on Congress to pass a robust coronavirus relief bill but said a larger stimulus effort would be necessary in his administration to address the long-term impact of the pandemic.

"Any package passed in lame-duck session is, at best, just a start," he said.

Mr. Biden named former Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen as his Treasury secretary nominee and Neera Tanden, head of the center-left think tank Center for American Progress, as his pick for director of the Office of Management and Budget. Ms. Tanden's nomination has already drawn disapproval from some on the right and the left because of her criticism of several GOP lawmakers and allies of Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont. If confirmed, she would be the first woman of color and the first South Asian woman to oversee OMB, while Ms. Yellen would be the first female Treasury secretary.

The former vice president also announced Cecilia Rouse, a Princeton University labor economist, as his choice to be chairwoman of the Council of Economic Advisers, and Adewale "Wally" Adeyemo, a former senior international economic adviser during the Obama administration, to serve as Ms. Yellen's top deputy at the Treasury Department.

Jared Bernstein and Heather Boushey, Mr. Biden's campaign economic advisers, will serve as members of the CEA alongside Ms. Rouse.

Ms. Rouse, Mr. Bernstein and Mr. Adeyemo played key roles in the aftermath of the financial crisis during the Obama administration.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D., Calif.) and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin planned to speak Tuesday afternoon about coronavirus relief, and a group of lawmakers from both the House and Senate unveiled a $908 billion aid proposal, seeking a middle ground between Democratic and Republican leaders' stances.

Mr. Biden said there was a consensus around the need to provide more resources to businesses and workers to adapt to the virus, and to shore up the production of personal protective equipment for health-care workers. He also stressed the importance of giving additional aid to small businesses and entrepreneurs "who form the backbone of the communities that we live in that are teetering on the edge."

The president-elect wore a boot during the event. He fractured his ankle over the holiday weekend after he slipped while playing with his dog.

Write to Sabrina Siddiqui at and Tarini Parti at


(END) Dow Jones Newswires

December 01, 2020 14:22 ET (19:22 GMT)

Copyright (c) 2020 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.