Don’t denigrate her with servile titles.
Valerie Jarrett says she has “very specific responsibilities” in the Obama White House and focuses on them, rather than on an all-encompassing portfolio.
“I’m not the shadow chief of staff,” she said, responding to the use of the term by POLITICO’s Ben White at a Morning Money breakfast. She mentioned her roles in outreach to women and girls, and to the business community and local government officials.
Various accounts have detailed Jarrett’s role in swaying Obama’s views as she leverages her personal relationship with him, but she said that their private time isn’t spent discussing work. “We do compartmentalize,” she said.
Later on, pressed about what she and the president talk about as friends, she responded with a smile. “Just stuff,” she said, “just stuff.”
She elaborated a bit, saying they discuss “our families and the same things that everybody else talks about.”
Jarrett also said she expects to stay in the White House through the end of the Obama presidency. “I have the best job that I have ever had and will ever have,” she said. “I serve at the pleasure of the president … I’ll be there as long as he’ll have me.”