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But Evans really came into focus during the fight over the recent Bush economic stimulus package. While others tried to keep House Ways and Means chairman Bill Thomas and Senate leaders in line, Evans lined up businesses big and small for their support and kept the private sector backers pushing the tax cut issues with the grassroots. Evans was also responsible for pointing the White House in which locales to hold their high profile events across the country. “Those routinely led the evening news, and they played well just about every time,” says a White House political staffer. “Evans was the background doing a solid job for us.”
So it shouldn’t have been a surprise when Evans was standing behind the President at the signing of the tax cut bill. Nor will it be a surprise to see Evans playing an increasingly high profile role in the coming months. It’s expected that the White House, with support from Republicans in both houses, will attempt to make another run at tax cuts and perhaps yet another swipe at the death tax. Regardless of what they attempt to do, look for Evans to be a much more visible player on the Hill and on the stump for the president.
“Unlike Clinton, we’re not going to put our Treasury Secretary out there to raise a ton of money from Wall Street,” says the White House source. “We’re not going to be holding coffees with [John] Snow there. Evans is going to be our face and our key guy in getting businesses and businessmen behind us.”
While the Treasury secretary won’t be Rubin-esque, he won’t be totally invisible. Already, he’s been slated to appear at several fundraisers for Republican highrollers. But soon Snow will disappear, leaving Evans holding up the money bag.
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H/T to National Review Online