Chicago Sun-Times
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Bill Burton, Sean Sweeney (former Rahm Emanuel staffer) leaving White House

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WASHINGTON--With the arrival of Jay Carney, the new White House press secretary, one of the top deputies to former press secretary Robert Gibbs--Bill Burton-- on Wednesday announced he was leaving.

Carney briefed the press for the first time on Wednesday--taking questions for 53 minutes.

Burton, a Deputy Press Secretary, said in an e-mail to colleagues he will leave the White House Friday, to start a firm with Sean Sweeney, the top staffer to former White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel, now running for Chicago mayor.

Burton, who was with the 2008 Obama presidential campaign from the beginning was on the short list to replace Gibbs; he is also expecting his first child.

"And while I have felt a real fulfillment in this position -- from the walls of this building to the shores of Honolulu -- painting the new baby's room this past weekend gave me clarity about a house I might want to spend a little more time in," Burton said in the note.

Sweeney was chief of staff for Emanuel. His last day will also be Friday. The two are forming a firm "focused on political and strategic consulting."

Sweeney's and Burton's connections with Emanuel goes back years. Sweeney was Emanuel's staff director when he was in House leadership and was the political director of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee when Emanuel was the chair. Burton was Emanuel's communications chief at the DCCC at that time.

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Lynn Sweet

Lynn Sweet is a columnist and the Washington Bureau Chief for the Chicago Sun-Times.

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This page contains a single entry by Lynn Sweet published on February 16, 2011 3:09 PM.

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