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Originally published February 18, 2009 at 12:00 AM | Page modified February 18, 2009 at 10:31 AM

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UW law professor to help Obama make political appointments

University of Washington law professor Paul S. Miller has been appointed special assistant to President Obama.

Seattle

University of Washington law professor Paul S. Miller has been appointed special assistant to President Obama.

Miller, an expert in disability and employment-discrimination law, will help the administration make certain political appointments, including those in the Department of Justice, the Department of Education and a host of regulatory agencies.

"There's such enthusiasm from people throughout the country to join this administration and serve," Miller said Tuesday night from Washington, D.C.

The Bush administration was accused of playing politics in the firing of U.S. Attorney John McKay of Western Washington and eight of his colleagues, although a recent Justice Department report concluded the primary reason behind McKay's ouster was a clash with his former boss.

Miller said he won't be involved in the appointment of U.S. attorneys. He said he has no preconceived notions about whom to hire and will look for the most qualified people to serve.

He said he's been helping with the transition of power in a number of roles since the election, before agreeing to the full-time post Friday.

He is on leave from the UW.

Copyright © 2009 The Seattle Times Company

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