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Tom Daschle: A Creature of the System

The problem with Tom Daschle's nomination as health and human services secretary and health czar wasn't just that he failed to pay income tax on the use of a car and the services of a driver. That's what forced him to withdraw, but the more fundamental issue was, or should have been, that he had the free use of a chauffeured limousine in the first place. The real problem was that Daschle's post-Senate career so vividly illustrates the back-scratching culture that Barack Obama has pledged to change.

Daschle, who is not a lawyer, was being paid a million dollars a year by a law firm. As what? Not a lobbyist -- at least, not officially. But it's safe to say that he wouldn't have been offered that sinecure if he hadn't been such a powerful senator. Daschle has juice. He could talk to people, take positions, speak authoritatively. He was an important man who, it goes without saying, needed to have a car and driver at his disposal. In just two years after leaving the Senate, he made something like $5.3 million.

This is not corruption, but neither is it change we can believe in. Tom Daschle is a good guy, but he's a creature of the system that Obama campaigned against -- the system that works discreetly, in back corridors and at cocktail parties, for monied special interests. It's not that all special interests are evil (even the health industry). It's that this system, according to Obama, has thwarted the nation's repeated attempts to deal with fundamental issues, such as health care. Daschle looked more like part of the problem than part of the solution.

By Eugene Robinson  | February 3, 2009; 2:54 PM ET
Categories:  Robinson  | Tags:  Eugene Robinson  
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Comments

Daschle juice is partly what got Obama the nomination, and the presidency. I'm assuming Obama also thought Daschle was "a good guy" and otherwise would not have nominated him for the position. Certainly not as payback for helping to get him elected. No. That would be "old Washington."

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

Don't blame Daschle for taking advantage of the system we've collectively built. In other words, blame the message (the system is broken)not the messenger Daschle.
The circle of money has wrapped around everyone and every process thwarting all attempts to unseat it.
We appear captive to the ride.

Posted by: steveandjanereed1 | February 3, 2009 3:42 PM | Report abuse

Thomas Daschle was a leader in "the system" for 30 years.

His wife has been an influence peddler for special interests -- airlines and defense industry -- for 25 years. The Daschles made millions gaming the system WHILE HE WAS THE SENATE DEMOCRATS' LEADER!

He has now paid the price for his hubris.

Poetic justice.

Posted by: DagnyT | February 3, 2009 3:51 PM | Report abuse

According to Politico (see: http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0209/18336.html ), it was a private equity fund, not a law firm, that paid Daschle a $1 million salary. You don't have to be a lawyer to work for a private equity fund. Check your facts, please, Mr. Robinson.

Posted by: Dan4 | February 3, 2009 4:19 PM | Report abuse

Another good article with one exception. Good guys don't know about issues in June and bring them up and deal with them in January

Posted by: alexarmac | February 3, 2009 4:26 PM | Report abuse

Robinson wrote Three Paragraphs and didn't slag Republicans. Well done, Eugene!

Posted by: Tupac_Goldstein | February 3, 2009 4:29 PM | Report abuse

And precisely why isn't this corruption? No, it's not blatent like selling Senate Seats or bags of money in the freezer, but just because he's smooth doesn't mean at some depth it isn't corruption.

Consider George Bailey accepting Mr. Potter's job offer. Nothing wrong with that eh? Excepting, everything was wrong with it. Ditto Mr. Daschle.

Posted by: jhtlag1 | February 3, 2009 4:31 PM | Report abuse

Hey Dan4-STOOOPID-you don't get it do you? Alston and Bird (from which most of your former DOJ officials under the Bush Admin. hailed, btw) PAID DASCHLE'S A $$ TONS OF MONEY TO BE, AN "INFLUENCE PEDDLAR"-SOLELY FOR THAT REASON! HE WASN'T A SENATOR GOING BACK INTO PRIVATE PRACTICE-HE DIDN'T DO ANYTHING FOR A & B except BE TOM DASCHLE-WHO CARES WHAT THE AMOUNT WAS-IT'S THE THOUGHT THAT COUNTED HERE! THAT IS NOT CHANGE, DASCHLE IS PART OF THE PROBLEM-IT'S OUTRAGEOUSLY OBSCENE THAT HE AND LINDA HAVE MILKED THE BELTWAY FOR ALL ITS WORTH ALL THESE YEARS-NO WONDER SOUTH DAKOTANS TURNED HIM OUT!

NO NOT CHANGE WE CAN BELIEVE IN! NOW-TIM GEITHNER, WHO HAS LOST ALL CREDIBILITY NEEDS TO DO THE RIGHT THING AND RESIGN-BECAUSE THAT PURE TAX CHEAT HAS NO BUSINESS, NO BUSINESS WHATSOEVER BEING HEAD OF TREASURY-THAT TOO, IS OBSCENE!

Posted by: Spring_Rain | February 3, 2009 4:31 PM | Report abuse

Tom Daschle is one problem. Another one is Mr. Obama; So, Mr. Robinson,what happens to his good judgment that all his blind followers, including yourself, boast about?
Obama backed him up all the way until Daschle decided to step down.
So much for Obama's judgment and 'the change we can believe in".
Looks like he's much better as a community organizer because he didn't have to make any decisions then.

Posted by: Veridico | February 3, 2009 4:44 PM | Report abuse

@dfan4

Daschle ALSO worked at a law firm...and was paid $2 million in 2008 for his "work" there...

Posted by: squatty2 | February 3, 2009 4:48 PM | Report abuse

So Geneie, how does it feel to find out your guys are as bad as my guys. Come on, put the pen to the paper and just admit it...Emperor Obama is out of his league, because people like you did NOTHING to vet the guy. Thanks a whole lot for nothing.

Posted by: mmourges | February 3, 2009 4:58 PM | Report abuse

Daschle was cut loose, he didn't back out.....Obama will run a clean house eventually by weeding these guys out the door...just wish he'd not let them in that door in the first place....he's learning....

Posted by: seakeys | February 3, 2009 5:02 PM | Report abuse

I am with Tupac_Goldstein all the way! Congratulations to Mr. Robinson, maybe his medication is working and he's able to string some sentences together which do not mention former President Bush or any other Republican!

Posted by: solson1 | February 3, 2009 5:18 PM | Report abuse

Gene, I agree with you completely. I didn't give a darn about the taxes, but I really cared greatly that he was providing 'expert advice', [not a 'registered' lobbyist], which is precisely what a lobbyist does for a living. Obama promised [and was elected predicated on those promises] he would get rid of lobbyists - none would work in his WH - and we believed him. Had he accepted Daschle, we all would have been very hurt and known he was no different than any other politician, including W. God what a wretched feeling!

Posted by: MadasHelinVA | February 3, 2009 5:21 PM | Report abuse

No. the problem isn't that Daschle didn't pay his taxes or that he ran around town in a free limo. The real problem is that Barack Obama, after all his campaign rhetoric about change, judged Daschle through the tired old prism of senatorial privilege and protocol. He took the lead in supporting Daschle "absolutely" even after so much excellent analysis of why he should go. He picked a good ole boy insider to grease Congressional wheels, instead of relying on his own ethical vision and leadership to move the people to move Congress. President Obama has a very small window of time to get back in the saddle and LEAD TOWARD CHANGE.

Posted by: farhorizons | February 3, 2009 5:22 PM | Report abuse

Here's to you Mr. Robinson,

Even an extreme left liberalist apparently can write a honest article. You are fair for once and do not have your blinders on. By George there may be hope for you yet. Here Here Mr. Robinson!

Posted by: rasman | February 3, 2009 5:24 PM | Report abuse

What I find amazing is the ridiculousness of your arguments, Mr. Robinson. I usually agree with you, but I think this is the case of the press just following the herd instead of providing thoughtful coverage of an issue.

Are we now saying that people who work in public office for decades and are VOTED out of office should only make a living at or below some amount we set? What should this amount be to be considered proper? Minimum wage? Look, this wasn't a case of someone who left their public office to "cash in." He was voted out and I don't see what is wrong with him making as much money as he possibly can as long as it is legal and proper. That is the American way.

With respect to paying back taxes for something he came to recognize as income...isn't that what amended tax returns are for? There is nothing improper or fraudulent about that. Are we now saying that anyone that files an amended tax return because of an error they recognize has done something wrong?

In fact, we should encourage people who make such mistakes to correct them and not the other way around. Maturity is clearly not something that has grown much in the press.

Posted by: ZnanaB | February 3, 2009 5:30 PM | Report abuse

"Daschle, who is not a lawyer, was being paid a million dollars a year by a law firm. As what?"

Rhetorical question. Mr. Robinson knows full well that DC law firms are not your small-town lawyer's office.

I have no problem with Daschle leaving office after 30 years and going to work for the highest bidder - it's the American Way, no? The problem is he thinks he can just come back and not be tainted by those millions.

Posted by: cpwdc | February 3, 2009 5:31 PM | Report abuse

I admit Daschle's behavior is a lapse and looks bad for him and Obama. It surely doesn't seem to usher in the era of responsibility. But I fear the perfect has become the enemy of the good. After reading Ceci Connelly's piece this morning about how well connected Daschle is, I was hopeful he would last the coming storm because he seemed uniquely positioned to accomplish health care reform. Now that dream might be completely dashed. I only hope that the next point person on health care is as well suited to make things happen in Washington. A squeaky clean Washington neophyte is not likely to succeed (the greater good) where Daschle seemed poised for success.

Posted by: otabenga | February 3, 2009 5:34 PM | Report abuse

"Here's to you Mr. Robinson," for always elucidating the essence of the argument. Ah, forgive those bloggers who accuse leftist sympathies.
Their movements have been hardened to the right of the political spectrum.

Posted by: flcat | February 3, 2009 5:56 PM | Report abuse

I dunno, I think the back taxes ARE the issue. People understand the desire to make lots of money. People get that influence is often traded for lots of money.

But not many people can relate to owing $140K in TAXES on a freaking LIMO. Instead we think, man, for what all that chauffeurage cost, we coulda bought a goddamn mansion.

It's not that the gross income was too large, or that the taxes were paid belatedly--it's the crossing of that line between mere avarice and unpardonable gratuitousness. He fits right in there with the fat-cat Lemon Socialists on Wall Street who are throwing Roman orgies for themselves with the bailout money.

It's like that guy down the street who seems pretty OK until he proudly shows off his rhodium-plated weed whacker. After that you think, who the ***k is that guy, anyway?

Posted by: youarestillidiots | February 3, 2009 6:08 PM | Report abuse

All I know is, I didn't cast my ballot in order to be having this kind of national conversation. Then again...

Posted by: martymar123 | February 3, 2009 6:14 PM | Report abuse

For me, voting for Obama was a statement that the old ways would just not do. Daschle represents those old ways. Its time for some youthful exhuberance, new faces and for HHS, that means someone who understands the need to build a new system of healthcare without the waste and corruption we've been paying for with the insurance industry these last 30+ years. We need doctors and hospitals that operate under the Hippocratic oath - not ICD-9 codes and ridiculous pandering to the drug/insurance companies.

Posted by: cmaexecutive | February 3, 2009 7:21 PM | Report abuse

I am so disappointed over this whole process. Avarice clings to our elected officials like poison oak.
I think you just have to look at the mentality it takes to (in most cases) want to become a politician. In order to put oneself in the public eye, one certainly must have a great deal of self confidence, to the point of being egotistical in order to make it.
With such an ego there surely follows a sense of entitlement. Hell the people voted for you and they listen to your speeches! Enjoy your limo rides you are the best thing ever. Furthermore, enjoy kickbacks from all sorts of interests-you're an important person and your office doesn't pay you enough.
In essence, I can't stand this crap and the level of mistrust I, and I'm sure many other Americans feel towards politicians is reaching a dangerous level.

Posted by: CypressTree | February 3, 2009 7:24 PM | Report abuse

I am so disappointed over this whole process. Avarice clings to our elected officials like poison oak.
I think you just have to look at the mentality it takes to (in most cases) want to become a politician. In order to put oneself in the public eye, one certainly must have a great deal of self confidence, to the point of being egotistical in order to make it.
With such an ego there surely follows a sense of entitlement. Hell the people voted for you and they listen to your speeches! Enjoy your limo rides you are the best thing ever. Furthermore, enjoy kickbacks from all sorts of interests-you're an important person and your office doesn't pay you enough.
In essence, I can't stand this crap and the level of mistrust I, and I'm sure many other Americans feel towards politicians is reaching a dangerous level.

Posted by: CypressTree | February 3, 2009 7:26 PM | Report abuse

I am so disappointed over this whole process. Avarice clings to our elected officials like poison oak.
I think you just have to look at the mentality it takes to (in most cases) want to become a politician. In order to put oneself in the public eye, one certainly must have a great deal of self confidence, to the point of being egotistical in order to make it.
With such an ego there surely follows a sense of entitlement. Hell the people voted for you and they listen to your speeches! Enjoy your limo rides you are the best thing ever. Furthermore, enjoy kickbacks from all sorts of interests-you're an important person and your office doesn't pay you enough.
In essence, I can't stand this crap and the level of mistrust I, and I'm sure many other Americans feel towards politicians is reaching a dangerous level.

Posted by: CypressTree | February 3, 2009 7:27 PM | Report abuse

i think about the past history lessons..why
tossing the tea in the harbor.
it is always about taxes.
our tax system is complex, perhaps that is a quest for Obama.
make it simple, simpler.
like Obama said....we put a man on the moon.
surely, we can develop a tax system that is fair, and transparent, w/o years going by ...having to admit ...
what really is not a sin.
look inside your own tax statements. look what the oil companies have done to us and are still doing.
everything is so corrupt, health care, cost of drugs.
well.
if you have a daughter, why not think about having 10 fertile embryos ...
implanted........you can become a freak millionaire.
shows you what our lives have denigrated to.

Posted by: jelizbooki | February 3, 2009 7:44 PM | Report abuse

Does anyone remember what Al Capone did to get put in Prison. A lot less that Obama's Sect. of Treasury, and Tom Daschle.

Posted by: bobmart | February 3, 2009 8:20 PM | Report abuse

I agree with you, Mr. Robinson, that Daschle is too much in bed with the health care industry to have led any meaningful reform effort. Yet Obama picked him, which confirms my impression that Obama is not serious about real health care reform. He avoided the issue as long as he could during the campaign, then came out with a watered-down version of the Edwards and Clinton plans. Those of us hoping for real change are not going to get it under this Administration.

Posted by: lydgate | February 3, 2009 8:39 PM | Report abuse

you people donot understand. Obama did not want this nor had a clue that this would happen. Be calm, cool....everything in life .....
takes time.
WE ALL HAVE MADE MISTAKES.
SOMETIMES. ONE DID NOT REALIZE.
sit back, have faith.
let us all walk forward.
life is going to be ok..you have to believe.

Posted by: jelizbooki | February 3, 2009 8:53 PM | Report abuse

Contrary to what some people may think we the people did not create this system.

Daschle and his fellow "good friends" (although I prefer "creature") did.

Every one of these bozos think they are making extraordinary sacrifices to "serve" the people. They use this bs to craft a system where they enter into lobbying and influence peddling and make enormous sums of money from "doing" the people's business.

Good riddance to Daschle. Now lets move on to the rest of them.

Posted by: krankyman | February 3, 2009 8:55 PM | Report abuse

Ok people, calm down. Some facts that make Daschle different than the Republican scumbags who have been running the show for the past 8 years:

1. Daschle did not quit to join a lobbying firm so he could make more money. He was voted out of office after 25 years.

2. Isn't it possible that after being voted out of office and needing a job, Daschle decided to take their money even if he didn't believe in everything his employers did. I mean come on people. We all have jobs. Do you agree with everything your boss or your company does? I sure as hell don't but what is the alternative?

3. Given the chance, he wanted to jump back into public service. Does anyone really think he would give preferential treatment to his former clients and employers even if such actions would go against the principles of the administration. I seriously doubt it.

Posted by: dsk097 | February 3, 2009 9:08 PM | Report abuse

Beholden to his patron$, there no way he would regulate them properly.

Posted by: Thinker1 | February 3, 2009 9:27 PM | Report abuse

And he's white.

Posted by: kdfal | February 3, 2009 10:12 PM | Report abuse

Hang on, PBO voters. Your captain doesn't know how to steer this contraption. It's going to be a bumpy ride!

Posted by: waterfrontproperty | February 3, 2009 10:20 PM | Report abuse

Not to excuse TD erroneous filings but the pique against him and others is that they get a car and driver or can afford a housekeeper or nanny. America is consumed by the politics of ENVY.

Posted by: jasonfelton1 | February 4, 2009 12:13 AM | Report abuse

I strongly disagree. The problem with Daschel is that he failed to pay taxes. Same as Tim Geithner and Al Capone.

Posted by: XLiberalJack | February 4, 2009 7:45 AM | Report abuse

Daschle is a symptom of a culture of corruption in both parties, even though he is truly concerned about the little man.

However, The GOP pretend to care so deeply about the stimulus, when it is patently obvious and a derelict of their duty to the public, that the GOP are working furiously for the next elections and not the peoples' economic crisis looming so large at this time. Some Republican Pundits charged with this task, call the Stimulus a stinking corpse, before it is even born, instead of what it is -- a valuable work in progress for this country. Like any creation, in the early stages, it is chaos and not fully formed, such as a fetus, a painting, any work of art, and yet the artist ploughs on knowing the beauty to be eventually created. Why in the world, would some Pundits criticize the early form instead of giving support, is beyond the pale, especially when they know to publically criticize it is to get the ball rolling to derail it. May be they do not love this country more than their party affiliation! These pundits sit in their high-paying jobs, so lofty, and pick apart every little thing someone says or does, Wears...., with nothing good to say, like their word is God or gold -- as they no longer report the news but give their Opinions about the news. There was a time when we were taught as Americans, if you have nothing good to say about anyone, say nothing at all. We have lost that. These Pundits are a part of the problem and not the solution.

At this critical stage in our rapidly-crumbling economy, it would seem that the Republican Senators would do everything they can to do something, to tell the American people, I am on your side, and not always to quickly say no to the middle class and the little people; no to schools, education, infra structure, green jobs, all of which have too long been denied and neglected and Yet, always yes to the Special Interest Groups, to wars, to big oil and their tax breaks.

It is a sad fact that for average American citizens, the GOP is becoming the party of NO! We can not depend on the GOP to help us, they never have. In 2010, we will know what to do.

Posted by: dsoulplane | February 4, 2009 7:50 AM | Report abuse

Seems to me that Mr. Robinson nailed the dilemma right on the head. Daschle is doing exactly what too many former politicians have been doing for years. And that made him a test case for the Obama administrations real resolve to change the revolving door problem in Washington, DC.]

Still Trent Lott deciding to exit the senate to enter the lucrative lobbying (I'm sorry, "advise giving") industry strikes me as a much more blatant recent example of the need to change the buisness as usual problem in DC.

Posted by: ChokoChuckles | February 4, 2009 8:03 AM | Report abuse

All these words, every paper, across the land...

..........and not a single outraged citizen or opinion about the bailed out banks that have off shore headquarters to avoid paying US taxes.

SHAME ON THEM

SHAME ON THE PRESS

SHAME SHAME SHAME

Posted by: dutchess2 | February 4, 2009 9:56 AM | Report abuse

Come on, Gene. When did it become a mark of "back-scratching culture" to take your experience and accomplishments out for a ride? I probably can't convince the speakers bureaus to book me for lucrative speaking engagements (expenses paid) but it doesn't bother me that you can -- you've earned it through your mostly balanced writing. But if you are going to exempt a certain segment of accomplished individuals, then you ought to rethink http://www.washingtonspeakers.com/speakers/speaker.cfm?speakerid=5963 .

Posted by: MHRudolph | February 4, 2009 11:02 AM | Report abuse

The thing that sticks in my craw is that people like Daschle and the corporate leeches have nannies, drivers, maids. They have servants!

I struggle through parenting, working, being a husband, and taking care of elderly parents and in-laws, and these slime balls are rich and corrupt enough to have people wait on them. And I understand that Daschle and his family jetted off on a great vacation. What is a "vacation"?

Am I bitter? Oh, no more bitter than I am at seeing my carefully-nurtured retirement funds go into Wall Street bonuses -- along with a substantial portion of my son's college savings. I literally cannot retire, since too many people depend on me.

Daschle had a Cadillace limo? My car is 16-years-old, and it really needs new tires.

Oh yeah, and I do my own taxes -- honestly and accurately, because I naively thought that that is what Americans are supposed to do.

Posted by: cthehill | February 4, 2009 11:09 AM | Report abuse

Eugene, you are right but the problem is that Obama is a product of this exact same culture. Most of Obama's line on curbing the influence of lobbyist's has not been true from the beginning.

Remember the article on security at some event for Obama a couple of weeks a ago. The article was a boor but it did point out that the people at the event had all raised campaign donations for Obama of more than $300,000 each!!!!!

Where do you think this money came from? Sure companies could not contribute directly, but CEOs could send in donations in the name of their children, their dogs, their mistresses, etc.. etc.... Fact is Obama financed his campaign in the same way everyone always has, and is beholden to the same people the president is always beholden to.

Why the press let it all slide to page A6 I will never know, but they did the public a disservice by not telling them the truth.

Posted by: DCDave11 | February 4, 2009 11:22 AM | Report abuse

Daschle epitomizes the out of control power our federal government has become. His "lobbying" work is not illegal, but it should be unecessary. The feds develop onerous rules and regs, and then law firms make millions helping companies comply. The law firms hire Daschle types to help interpet the rules. This is government run amok.

It needs to be ended. Let's start with term limits. End an overbearing federal government and all the corruption and waste that comes with it.

Posted by: rwyoung | February 4, 2009 2:39 PM | Report abuse

Well atleast President Obama has the option to choose another person for this post. What's the issue? Look at what happened to John McCain with the "Sarah Palin" V.P. pick. Dude should have dumped that chick...lol. Vetted? It's not like President Obama is naming people like "Joe the Bumber" to any post'ers! Ma'aaaan, what a poster child. Behind me Satan...

Posted by: opp88 | February 4, 2009 3:21 PM | Report abuse

Plenty of good Americans to choose from...

Posted by: opp88 | February 4, 2009 3:36 PM | Report abuse

Americans should be voicing their opposition against scum like Sean "Hates America" Hannity, Rush Limpballs and alike. Republicans stop your yada yada yada and start being Americans...

Posted by: opp88 | February 4, 2009 3:42 PM | Report abuse

I have a good idea lets audit all the Washington politicians by statue, let see how many Republican holier than though Senators pass the muster, how many have off shore bank accounts and how many have stock in the companies that their legislative activities has an effect on. Then we will get somewhere, lets investigate all of them. Then lets levy a tax increase on all billionaires in this country, and get some of our money back they stole over the last few decades.

How about the requirement that if a company moves its labor and manufacturing to China, then management and all its top employees have to live there. And we levy a 100 per cent tariff to bring the goods back, like other countries in the world have done to us.


Our large corporations, wall street bankers and most politicians have committed economic treason to our country, supporting a repressive regime so they could get rich using cheap labor, they need to be held accountable.

You wonder why the economy is really bad, besides the treasonous fools on Wall street, look at what has been allowed to happen for the last twenty years, and especially the last 8 with the Republicans. Somebody needs to get up and say it . Class war ? My friends the middle class has already lost it.


Hold them accountable and tax them again ......

Posted by: oldwave | February 4, 2009 8:19 PM | Report abuse

Well I like the idea of not paying taxes, but that should be given to everyone. Problem is that Biden thinks paying taxes is patriotic which set the Obama administration up for being the hypocrits that they really are. The change Obama promised does not look like change. It looks like more political sleeze.

Posted by: BettyM47 | February 4, 2009 10:57 PM | Report abuse

Isn't it funny that Obama has to pick people from the GOP to fill his cabinet when the Dems mess up?

Posted by: BettyM47 | February 4, 2009 11:00 PM | Report abuse

The US dodged a bullet. The NCCAM was created by Daschle to explore "non-traditional" medicine with Federal funds that might have sponsored real research. NCCAM studies of milk thistle and other health care frauds clothe pecuniary abuses of the sick with Federal approval. The NIH should limit aggregate funding for NCCAM studies to $2.00.

Posted by: Martial | February 5, 2009 9:08 AM | Report abuse

"But it's safe to say that he wouldn't have been offered that sinecure if he hadn't been such a powerful senator. Daschle has juice. He could talk to people, take positions, speak authoritatively. He was an important man who, it goes without saying,..."

So how is using one's past professional experience (which includes your connections, past stature, and power) any different than we all use to get a job in any profession? Its a matter of degree, not if it occurs. So dinging Daschle on this point seems a bit disingenuous. But saying that the way he and others conduct backroom business is the same old DC politics has some truth to it, but all professions work in that mode at some level, albeit national politics has a far greater effect on the entire US than say an engineer or a state legislator. Reporters do the same, as do commentators, as do_______(fill in the blank).

Posted by: CapHillDC | February 5, 2009 11:12 AM | Report abuse

Get real folks! Daschel was nominated because he was the single person in the country who had a chance of marshaling radical health care reform through Congress. The discovery of his post-Senate peccadilloes negated that potential. Sadly, because his failure is a loss to us all.

Go team!!! Let's continue to pay more for worse health care than any other "developed" nation - even Fidel's broken, impoverished experiment does as well. Waste on brothers and sister!!!!!

Posted by: fr3dmars | February 5, 2009 11:17 PM | Report abuse

Gotta' love the GOP's rants and aversion to the tax snafu's of this administration's appointees . . .all the while the entire nation (and world) witnessed the GOP's overt braggadocio and efforts to avoid paying taxes.

One would think the current tax dodgers and/or tax mistakes (which CPA's make themselves) would make these Dem appointees heros of the very GOP talking heads who are ranting and protesting during the vetting process.

GW's got nothing to do, he can pin medals on the very people who didn't pay taxes and/or made mistakes for helping flush the nation down the drain.

Posted by: spritey | February 6, 2009 5:45 PM | Report abuse

I have yet to understand why it is such a sin for a Democrat to work hard and make a lot of money. Most of them get that money for supporting issues that HELP those who have less. I for one think you should reap what you sow. If you sow good, you should reap good. If sometimes that means you make money, it's good with me.

Posted by: lynettema | February 9, 2009 4:12 PM | Report abuse

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