The WaPo reports this morning that Cass Sunstein is going to be the OIRA Administrator. This is really terrific news and continues the remarkable tradition of the extraordinarily high talent level that has occupied that position over the past many years (Dudley, Graham, Katzen, etc.).
Given Sunstein's apparently close connections to Obama, this also suggests that President Obama anticipates a muscular role for OIRA in his administration. And the appointment of Susntein presumably also reflects commitment to cost-benefit analysis in regulation, which is exceedingly good news and may provide a brake on some more extravagant regulatory initiatives. Given Sunstein's long record of scholarship on many of these issues, it will be interesting to see how he translates his ideas into practice, especially CBA, behavioral law & economics, and discounting. For now though, the obvious point is congratulations to Cass and Obama both.