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Obama Stands By Daschle, 'Absolutely'

By Anne E. Kornblut
President Obama repeated his support on Monday for Thomas A. Daschle, whose failure to pay more than $146,000 in back taxes until last month has raised concerns about his nomination to head the Department of Health and Human Services.

During a White House photo op, Obama was asked whether he still stands by Daschle. "Absolutely," Obama said. He was joined by the Vermont governor, Jim Douglas, a Republican.

Daschle sent a letter to the Senate Finance Committee apologizing for the mistake, saying he was "deeply embarrassed" by his tax oversight. The committee plans to meet with Daschle later on Monday.

By Web Politics Editor  |  February 2, 2009; 1:21 PM ET
Categories:  B_Blog , Cabinet  
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Next: Obama Plans Visit to Illinois for Lincoln's 200th


I was golfing yesterday. Maybe I should do that more often and Hillary Clinton will resign?

Posted by: JakeD | February 4, 2009 11:54 AM | Report abuse

Su-weet! Daschle dodges $140,000 in income taxes and penalties, doesn't pay his Medicare taxes, claims more charitable deductions than he made, looks really dirty for some of his "advisor fees" and payments from health ins. companies, but the "democrats" don't see any problems with any of that, nothing to disqualify him for the Health and Human Services job. Oops, I forgot, they're democrats, no ethics, morality, honesty, or honor to get in their way! Daschle probably doesn't have a clue why there is any uproar about it! Don't expect Sharpton or Geithner think he did anything wrong! The Messiah doesn't see any problem! There's your "Change", allright! The jackals are breaking into the henhouse!

Posted by: lightnin001 | February 2, 2009 11:19 PM | Report abuse

I have a definate problem with the way these infractions by individuals nominated by the President is being handled. The standards he holds ordinary citizens, who want to work in his White House are not the same he holds his cabinet members to. They are forgiven for everything, the only one who seemed to have the actual country and the business of the White House in mind was Richardson. But wht cant the President hold these people accountable?

Posted by: temperance05 | February 2, 2009 9:30 PM | Report abuse

Did O'Bomba's Bus run out of gas?

Or, is it because NOW he is in Power, and as such is no longer worried about having his cohorts criticized?!

The Election is OVER! Now, the REAL Barack Hussein O'Bomba-Nation can get in that "Empty Suit".

WHY? Why did the GOP stick us with McAmnesty and his Cheerleader?!

God Bless or Damn America?

Try: God HELP/SAVE America!

Posted by: SAINT---The | February 2, 2009 5:42 PM | Report abuse

Indeed, ethics in the Obama administration ARE different. He is making these appointees, all of whom have previous government service, walk a straighter line than they were previously accustomed to.

People of all stripes make tax mistakes, or more likely try to test the limits, and then they pay it later, with or without penalties depending on how good their tax lawyer is.

At least they are paying it now, in some cases after the statute of limitations has passed. They could have declined the nomination and stayed in their current (often better-paying) gigs. They want to serve their country, and their president. Let's see how they do.

Posted by: mikeinmidland | February 2, 2009 4:26 PM | Report abuse

This is pretty darned appalling. The fact that President Obama appointed him, okay that's fine. But standing by an admitted TAX CHEAT instead of demanding his resignation sounds like typical Washington politics as usual. Some CHANGE, Mr. Obama. I guess this means come April 15th I can "forget" to pay MY taxes and I'll get a pass, too, right?

Posted by: linguist64 | February 2, 2009 4:18 PM | Report abuse

It's obvious that Obama's administration defines "ethics" differently that the rest of the country. Or in the words of William Jefferson Clinton, "that depends on what your definition of 'is' is."

Posted by: hakjr | February 2, 2009 4:04 PM | Report abuse

Maybe now George Bush can say if all these pols had paid their taxes the economy would not be in such a bad shape.How is Obama appt. going to run the gov when they cant even take care of their own self

Posted by: yankeenana2 | February 2, 2009 3:20 PM | Report abuse

And how come those mistakes were not mistakes until last month? So if he was not nominated - we would NEVER have seen his money.

Posted by: candida1 | February 2, 2009 3:04 PM | Report abuse

Will Daschle have to pay a penalty for his "I am so sorry" back taxes? We normal citizens do not receive any leniency when we make our "I am so sorry" mistakes. Can't believe people's eyes are still shut so tight that two cabinets members with legal issues are going to run two very important branches. Incredible!!!

May as well nominate John Edwards, at least the only illegal thing he did was not obey his marriage vows!

Posted by: candida1 | February 2, 2009 3:01 PM | Report abuse

First, Obama is not legally President. Second, he "stood by" the TREASURY guy not paying his taxes, so why would this be a surprise? If these nominations had been made by GWB, what would the MSM reaction?

Posted by: JakeD | February 2, 2009 1:25 PM | Report abuse

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