Obama sends Leach to G-20 Summit

Former Iowa Congressman Jim Leach, a Republican, endorsed Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama in AugustLeach also spoke at the Democratic National Convention

President Bush made it clear before the election that the president-elect would be invited to the G-20 Summit which meets in Washington this weekend. Obama has decided to send Leach and former Secretary of State Madeline Albright as his envoys.

Leach was in congress for 30 years, rising at one point to become chairman of the House Banking Committee.  Leach was also a member of the International Relations Committee and attended several international conferences featuring the finance ministers of other countries, as well as heads of state.  (It was at one of these international meetings that Leach met Bono. The two share a love of rugby and have become friends.)

G-20 Summits of the past have been gatherings of the finance ministers from the world's 20 leading economies, folks Leach likely has met.  Now, for the first time since its creation in 1999, the heads of state from the G-20 countries will gather to discuss the global financial crisis.

Leach is currently a professor at Princeton, his alma mater. Perhaps Obama's decision to dispatch Leach to the G-20 Summit in D.C. is an indication Leach may be invited to leave academia and return to the political realm in an Obama administration.

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About O.Kay Henderson

O. Kay Henderson is the news director of Radio Iowa.