I've got a poll in the extended, asking what Daschle should do, continue or pull himself out of the nomination process, because of his unpaid taxes.

If he does step out, Howard Dean should be the HHS Secretary, but that's just me.

Tags: Tom Daschle (all tags)



Re: Daschle?

Agreed, in fact we are on the same wavelength - I made an extended case for why Dean is better for HHS than Daschle on the merits.

by azizhp 2009-01-31 07:58AM | 0 recs
Re: Daschle?

Thanks for adding more targets to my ad blocker (feedproxy.google.com).  Please remove this garbage from your signature.

by username 2009-01-31 10:12AM | 0 recs
Re: Daschle?

Dean is far better than Daschle, and obviously pretty well vetted.

by lojasmo 2009-01-31 08:05AM | 0 recs
Excellent solution! n/t

by bobswern 2009-01-31 08:16AM | 0 recs
Re: Daschle?


by spacemanspiff 2009-01-31 08:23AM | 0 recs
Re: Daschle?

agree. I think both would be good inteh role, but if not Daschle, then dean

by bruh3 2009-01-31 08:27AM | 0 recs
Re: Daschle?

I disagree.  Daschle brings to the table something Dean doesn't, in that Daschle knows the Senate like the back of his hand, and has worked with Senate Democrats for years.  I don't know that there's anyone better at this point to shepherd comprehensive health care reform through Congress than Tom Daschle.

Now, if Obama could get him in a less formal role doing just that, it might be easier politically for him to drop out of nomination for HHS.  But we need him on health care.

by mistersite 2009-01-31 08:34AM | 0 recs
Re: Daschle?

I disagree - remember that Sec. of HHS is an executive position, so Dean's primary role would be to manage that huge bureacracy. Dean's executive experience is superior to pretty much anyone else in the White House - and he knows how to balance a budget as well as promote progressive policy. Take a look at the full case I've laid out.

by azizhp 2009-01-31 08:37AM | 0 recs
Re: Daschle?

That depends on what you're using your HHS secretary for.  If it's just an administrative post, you're right in that Dean might be good for the job.  But it appears that the Obama administration wants HHS taking the lead on health care reform - which is a job that will require someone who knows how to work the U.S. Congress.  Dean quite simply doesn't have that experience, and his public image is such that he'd be a lightning rod for the reform effort.  Daschle is the anti-Dean in that respect... he knows Congress really well, and has a really unassuming public image.

Like I said, if the Obama admin wants to decouple comprehensive health care reform from the HHS secretary, Daschle could bow out and still be in the lead on health care - leaving someone like Dean to step into the now completely administrative role.  But if Obama wants HHS on point for health care reform, Daschle's the guy he wants, without a question.

by mistersite 2009-01-31 08:51AM | 0 recs
Re: Daschle?

his public image is such that he'd be a lightning rod for the reform effort

Not necessarily. He isn't running for president anymore. He isn't chairman of the Democratic party anymore.  His isn't attacking W anymore.

He brings with him the background of having been a family doctor in private practice, of having a wife who is still a family doctor in private practice, and of having been a governor who was widely known for being a good steward of public dollars (read: a penny-pincher) while at the same time practically universalizing healthcare coverage for children in Vermont.

This is an issue he's an expert on. He wouldn't be able to work Congress as a Daschle or a Biden might be able to. But I think he would do an outstanding job of presenting the case to the American people.

And that's ultimately what matters. Making the case to the people. If Obama (like Reagan did) will get on TV and appeal to the citizens to call and write their Congressfolk (especially Republicans), I believe they will, and that's what's going to move Congress.

by Rob in Vermont 2009-01-31 09:41AM | 0 recs
Re: Daschle?

And Franken is no longer writing books calling people big fat idiots.

Still a lightning rod.

by Trowaman 2009-01-31 09:50AM | 0 recs
Re: Daschle?

Right, he's no longer calling people big fat idiots. And the citizens of his state have just elected him to represent them in the U.S. Senate.

Careful, you may be helping me to make my case!


But seriously, not all analogies are sound. I think Dean isn't the lightning rod you think he is, and, for the reasons I stated, would be a very good advocate for the administration's healthcare policy, whether or not he's a part of the administration.

by Rob in Vermont 2009-01-31 11:26AM | 0 recs
Re: Daschle?

in fact, arguably you could let Biden take point on schmoozing Congress for major legislation.

by azizhp 2009-01-31 03:01PM | 0 recs
Re: Daschle?

I think Dean really needs to be involved somewhere in the Obama Administration, but I think the "no drama" rule will keep him out until after a health care reform bill is passed (soon, please!). Daschle has the Senate inside connections, but he also has a soft image, so there'll be no "Daschle-care" branding. No one really has a negative opinion about Daschle-- at least, not yet.

Dean, on the other hand, brings baggage as an established GOP punching bag. If Obama is still popular but Dean is heading the health care initiative, then the GOP will bypass Obama and jump right into, "Look, Howard Dean, the ultra-liberal, latte-drinking, Volvo-driving socialist from VERMONT wants to socialize health care!"

I think that's probably the reasoning for Dean not having a high spot in the health care fight. I don't agree with it-- I think having a strong advocate like Dean would be helpful, GOP be damned-- but I think that's probably how the administration is reading this.

If Daschle makes it through and we pass a health care reform bill this year, I'll say that by summer 2010, Dean will already be serving on some important commission, and as a logical choice to step into the cabinet in the future. That's my prediction for today.

by Fitzy 2009-01-31 08:46AM | 0 recs
Re: Daschle?

I like your crystal ball.

by NvDem 2009-01-31 08:59AM | 0 recs
Re: Daschle?

Daschle should fight on.  First, they let Geithner have a pass on his tax issues.  My understanding was that he was aware of the issue and ignored it until his name came up for nomination, at which point he rectified it.  Unlike Geither, it seems that Daschle's issue was one of those judgment calls that could have gone either way, On review, Daschle decided to err on the conservative side and paid up. People make mistakes, this is why the IRS allows you to file amended returns.  Daschle fessed up with his amended his return & paid before it became public knowledge.

Daschle brings to the table an almost unmatched influence in the Senate to get real reform going.  IMHO, at this point in this fight, he is the most able general that Obama can put out there.

On Dean, I really like your suggestion of Dean.  However, there is no guarantee that the Obama administration will pick Dean.  In fact, there are many voices at Obama's ear that just HATE the name Howard Dean (such as Emanuel and Clinton to start with).  

Face it, Dean broke barriers and pushed a lot of the current gatekeepers the wrong way in doing it.  They still don't understand how successful he was, or why.  But they still control who gets picked.  There is going to be a lot of push back to any suggestion that Howard Dean be HHS head.  Yes, Dean would be my choice, but I realistically don't see it happening.    

by NvDem 2009-01-31 08:57AM | 0 recs
reluctantly, I agree

I like Dean a lot better than I like Daschle, and this huge amount of unpaid taxes should be disqualifying.

However, Daschle is a lot more likely to get health care reform through the Senate than Dean. It's a fact, and life ain't fair.

by desmoinesdem 2009-01-31 10:47AM | 0 recs
Re: reluctantly, I agree

I think thats backwards. Daschle is the one with ties to the health insurance companies, whereas Dean is a fighter. And getting a bill through Congress is not the Secretary's job, its the White Houses job, and the Dem leadership. Dean's job as Sec of HHS would be to actually run HHS and make it better.

by azizhp 2009-01-31 12:09PM | 0 recs
Re: reluctantly, I agree

Not really...   Not in how Obama is using his cabinets and advisors.   I worked for HHS... It, like most departements, runs it self... the Secretaries set policy, but the nuts and bolts are run by the entrenched gov lifers in place now.    

Obama is using the secretaries whose departments fall under important legislation he wants to pass as lobbyists.  Its one of the reason so many house and senators were vetted in key departments as well as why Rahm emanuel is chief of staff.

by yitbos96bb 2009-01-31 01:30PM | 0 recs
Re: Daschle?

politico says daschle got loads of insurance indsutry money. so no-dashle wont step down. the insurance companies need him to screw the people on healthcare.

by art3 2009-01-31 09:17AM | 0 recs
Re: Daschle?

I've always been opposed to Daschle. The source of his income is very troublesome, not just his tax issues. He wouldn't be a lightning rod but a sucker just waiting to be pounced on to completely derail health care reform efforts that are not anything more than yet another gift to the insurance industry.

by Jeter 2009-01-31 10:44AM | 0 recs
Re: Daschle?

He wasn't the best choice--an establishment figure, an and old Washington hand.  This is what you can get when nominate someone as a political reward.  Did Obama know about this when Daschle was picked?

As for Dr. Dean, could he sell the health care plan to Congress and to an American public, while supportive of health care reform in general, is still skeptical of big government, post-stimulus?

Can he get some GOP support, however small?

by esconded 2009-01-31 09:32AM | 0 recs
Re: Daschle?

what is it with Obama appointing tax cheats?  

Geitner was bad enough.  I pay the self employment tax every year.  it's no big secret.  it isn't hard to understand.  yet the treasury secretary gets a pass and I'm supposed to believe he's going to fix the economy?

and now daschle, cheating more than 100K in taxes for a free car and driver from a Dem contributor?  nice.  why should he get a pass for this?  what the F does he need a car and driver for?  what is he, p. diddy?  imagine what we'd all say if he was repuke appointment?  and if you are going to suckle at a contributor's teat, at least pay the taxes.  and by the way, the back taxes he paid is two times the average wages of a family of four in this country.  I'm sure he's very tuned in to the struggles people are experiencing with helthcare.  

He was a terrible senate leader, a milquetoast who compromised at every turn, typical for a red state Dem, not to mention the insurance industry money he's taken.  for gods sake, he was a paid consultant to an insurance company and worked for a firm that lobbied for insurance industry.  He's the best HHS secretary?  Dean would be a brilliant choice.

who ever said above is absolutely right that this is what happens when playing quid pro quo with those that endorsed him instead of choosing the best person for the job.  just like caroline kennedy, this another bad appointment that should be stopped.  

by not a fan 2009-01-31 10:42AM | 0 recs
Re: Daschle?

It cracks me up when people think Geithner's tax issue was like a failure to pay a 1099.

by Jess81 2009-01-31 12:17PM | 0 recs
I bet if you audited 50 high paid consultants in

the lobbying business, you would probably find a high percentage of tax cheating to one extent or another.

The tax laws are squishy about expenses and other deductions for self employed consultants...

Not justifying it, I would love to see Dean instead of Daschle...just not going to happen.

Unlike Geither, it seems that Daschle's issue was one of those judgment calls that could have gone either way, someone said above, that is very true.
Rich self employed people really stretch it, right up to the line on taxes.

And, what really makes it prevalent is, very few people get caught?

Republican admin after Republican admin have gutted the IRS, starting way back with those show trials in the 80s in congress.

Read "Perfectly Legal"

http://www.amazon.com/Perfectly-Legal-Ca mpaign-Benefit-Everybody/dp/1591840198

By David Cay Johnston, the chapter on the IRS is amazing...

So, while I would as most prefer Dr. Dean (Daschle is a wuss..never liked him) Obama is going with a familar...

I think Dean might not play with the inner circle.

And, I think they are wrong, but Daschle will be confirmed anyway.

by WashStateBlue 2009-01-31 11:54AM | 0 recs
Re: Daschle?

One thing I haven't heard talked about that could be an issue - it's well known that Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-MT) and Daschle don't get along. At all. I believe Reid wrote about that in his book, didn't he? Anyways, even if he doesn't throw up any new stumbling blocks, Baucus probably won't be inclined to do Daschle any favors, even if his former CoS is a White House deputy CoS.

by Nathan Empsall 2009-01-31 05:04PM | 0 recs

Daschle should withdraw his name from consideration. He represents many of the qualities that President Obama has said he was trying to change.

Giving this nominee a "pass" on Obama's new ethical standards only reinforces the idea that the rules are for convenience and not principle.

I have great hope for the Obama administration, but I am really disappointed that the grudges of White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel dictate those who serve and those who are banished to Siberia. Case in point: Howard Dean.

Dr. Dean would have been the perfect person to be appointed to this post. To reform the insurance and medical system we need someone who is not bought and paid for by the system he is trying to change. For me the ideal candidate is someone that understands how government works (Governor of VT), the realities of the political system (DNC Chair), and most importantly has worked in the trenches of the medicine (In private practice with his wife Dr. Judy Dean).  There are too many reform ideas out there that will not resolve the day to day problems of the healthcare system. We need to talk to internists to find out the real inefficiencies.

Dr. Dean would be the perfect reform candidate. But he will never be given the opportunity to help because of Rahm Emanuel. Dr. Dean's dismissal is a bad omen for those who believe that Obama will truly reform our government for the better.

by JJonMyDD 2009-02-01 05:05AM | 0 recs


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