BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Gov.-elect John Bel Edwards has named his new budget chief: Lt. Gov. Jay Dardenne, the Republican who crossed party lines to lend critical support to Edwards in the runoff election.

Dardenne was announced Monday as Edwards' pick for commissioner of administration.

The commissioner is the governor's top budget adviser, the public face of an administration's financial negotiations and the overseer of the day-to-day operations of state government.

The position will be on the front lines for tackling the deep budget problems facing Louisiana, problems Edwards has pledged to address after taking office Jan. 11.

Dardenne, who failed in his own bid for governor earlier this year, had been rumored for the job even before the runoff election was over when he threw his support to Edwards over Republican David Vitter.

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