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Vallerie Jarrett Worked with the husband of Commission on Presidential Debates executive director Janet Brown

October 5, 2012

Photo: AP

President Obama’s closest adviser — often pegged as the real power in the  White House — is tied to the presidential debate commission, providing yet another  link in the web between the two entities, The Daily Caller has learned.

Valerie Jarrett — who Ed Klein called ”Ground  Zero in the Obama operation” — is the senior adviser and assistant to the  president for intergovernmental affairs and public engagement.

She served on the board of the Joyce Foundation with Michael Brewer, the  husband of Commission on Presidential Debates executive director Janet Brown,  beginning in 2002.

Jarrett is no longer listed as a foundation board member. She is,  however, one of the Obamas’ oldest friends and closest confidantes.

The Joyce Foundation is a progressive Chicago-based charitable foundation  that funds various progressive environmental, campaign finance reform  and gun control initiatives — including New York City Mayor Michael  Bloomberg’s anti-gun initiative, Mayors Against Illegal Guns.

Obama preceded their tenure, serving on the board from 1994-2002 — a time  when the foundation’s donations to the anti-gun Violence Policy Center alone  totaled $15 million, National Review reported in 2008.

The White House and the Joyce Foundation have also worked together closely on various issues as  recent as Sept. 20, when the foundation partnered with the White House Office of  Social Innovation “to brainstorm how prizes and other tools can be used, by  working together, to help address the nation’s most pressing challenges.”

The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy hosted a similar forum in partnership with  the Joyce Foundation and the Case Foundation in June 2012.

Whether Jarrett has had any communication with Brown or Brewer about the  upcoming debates, however, is unclear. Neither the Joyce Foundation, the  Commission on Presidential Debates, nor Jarrett returned The Daily Caller’s  request for comment.

The Daily Caller previously reported on  other marital ties and family ties between the debate commission and the White  House.

Connections include the former marriage of Federal Communications Commission  Chairman Julius Genachowski and ABC senior foreign correspondent Martha Raddatz,  who will be moderating the vice presidential debate on Oct. 11.

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