Deputy National Security Adviser Denis McDonough speaks at an interfaith forum at the All Dulles Area Muslim Society in Sterling, Va., Sunday, March 6, 2011. McDonough praised American Muslims for helping fight violent extremism, but said they aren't cooperating enough with law enforcement to counter the radicalization of young followers by al-Qaida-linked groups. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen) Denis McDonough welcomed White House staffers. (Cliff Owen/AP)

If Denis McDonough wasn’t so essential, he could have gotten a job as a Wal-Mart greeter.

The White House chief of staff was spotted Thursday morning (sans the red vest) welcoming staffers as they showed up to work after last night’s conclusion of the 16-day partial government shutdown. Standing inside the gate of the entrance to the grounds off Pennsylvania Ave., he shook hands with folks returning from their furloughs.

Class act. But no homemade muffins?

Looks like part of a welcome-back-to-work campaign by the White House: Vice President Biden was gladhanding federal workers this morning outside the Federal Triangle Metro station (and he brought baked goods).