Ending one of the biggest suspense stories inside the Beltway, Erskine Bowles bowed to pressure from President Clinton and said he would remain as White House chief of staff rather than return to the business world.
Bowles announced his decision at a Tuesday meeting of the White House senior staff, where many feared he was about to announce he was leaving. “There was dead silence in the room,” one official said later, and then Clinton’s top aides jumped up with a standing ovation.
Bowles is a multimillionaire investment banker and conservative Democrat credited with maintaining order and focus in a White House where confusion once reigned.
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