DiIulio Leaves White House Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives

John J. DiIulio, head of President Bush's Office of Faith-based and Community Initiatives, has announced that he is stepping down after only seven months, according to the Washington Post.

DiIulio had originally intended to stay in the position only for six months or so, to get the president's faith-based initiative off the ground. But DiIulio, a registered Democrat, often butted heads with conservatives who wanted to move more quickly on President Bush's effort to make it easier for religious social service programs to apply for federal funding. DiIulio preferred to move the legislation slowly, to allow the controversial initiative to build broad bipartisan support in Congress.

While conservatives appeared pleased at DiIulio's resignation, a spokesman for Sen. Joseph Lieberman (D-Conn.), the Democrats' chief supporter of the faith-based initiative, called DiIulio a "great advocate."

DiIulio will be resuming his teaching post at the University of Pennsylvania.

Dana Milbank. "Faith-Based Initiative Head Leaves" Washington Post 08/17/2001.