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Bush names Fox News Radio's Snow press secretary

Written by: Staff

WASHINGTON, Apr 26 (Reuters) President George W Bush named Fox News Radio host Tony Snow as White House press secretary today in his latest move aimed at giving his staff a new look and breathing new life into his presidency.

Snow, 50, is the first Washington pundit to become White House press secretary and in his role as a conservative commentator he has sometimes criticised the president.

A cancer survivor, Snow is the first journalist to go directly from the media industry to the top spokesman role since Ron Nessen during Richard Nixon's presidency.

He inherits one of the toughest jobs in Washington: Trying to manage the flow of White House information in an era of 24-hour news cycles, and put a fresh face on a White House struggling to fight back from a job approval rating that dropped to 32 per cent this week in a CNN poll.

''He's going to work hard to provide you with timely information about my philosophy, my priorities, and the actions we're taking to implement our agenda,'' Bush said in the White House briefing room with Snow and the long-time Bush loyalist he is replacing, Scott McClellan.

Snow, who starts his job in early May, worked as a speech writer for Bush's father when he was president and has a lengthy resume in print, radio and television journalism, usually in a role as a conservative commentator.

''One of the reasons I took the job is not only because I believe in the president, because believe it or not I want to work with you,'' Snow told reporters.

In his role as pundit, Snow has sometimes found fault with Bush's policies, particularly on government spending and even the president's sometimes tortured grammar.

Democrats gleefully circulated by e-mail a sampling of Snow's commentary about Bush in recent years, such as a November.

11, 2005, column after Democratic electoral gains in which he wrote that ... ''George Bush has become something of an embarrassment.'' More Reuters SHB BST2212

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