WASHINGTON (Reuters) - White House press secretary Robert Gibbs is leaving his position to work as an outside adviser for President Barack Obamas re-election campaign, an administration official said on Wednesday. Gibbs is to depart in early February. A successor is to be announced within the next two weeks, the official said. Gibbs , a close confidant of Obamas going back to his time as a US senator from Illinois, has for many Americans been one of the most public faces of the White House staff while holding near-daily news briefings. A veteran of Obamas 2008 presidential campaign, Gibbs would bring an experienced hand to Obamas bid for a new term.