Bush may have two IT advisers at hand

President-elect George W. Bush hasn't ruled out hiring more than one topdeputy to advise him on information technology policies.

Last week, Bush spokesman Ari Fleischer said the president-elect wantsa high-level deputy at the Office of Management and Budget assigned to coordinatefederal IT matters — in addition to performing other duties. He declinedto call the position an "IT czar" and said it would be an existing slotat OMB.

On Monday, Bush spokesman Dan Bartlett said it is possible that morethan one person would be assigned to handle high-tech issues, but he didnot elaborate.

"He has not ruled out any other additional selection of a person," Bartlettsaid. "But the word "czar' has been introduced by other people, not by thepresident-elect or his staff."

When Bush met last week with more than a dozen high-tech executives,he told them he might create a top position to promote the tech industry'sagenda inside the White House.

The status of how Bush will handle IT advisers is still up in the air,Bartlett said, but the president-elect has promised to continue reachingout to the high-tech community to consider their concerns.

"We are still kicking around a lot of ideas on technology," said oneadviser who declined to be identified.

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