Obama’s Army Wonk

ALBANY—Every May, some school districts in central New York and the North Country hold public policy forums in conjunction with school budget votes, and elected officials often attend. When Ray Meier was still serving in the State Senate, he would run into Representative John McHugh at this event, and others like it, from time to time. “McHugh would come in with these binders filled with all kinds of material,” Meier recalled on Tuesday, “and then never have to refer to them because he knew this stuff.” When Barack Obama nominated McHugh to be Secretary of the Army Tuesday, McHugh, who is serving his ninth term, was probably already looking for a new post.