Daschle withdraws

Tom Daschle has withdrawn as the nominee for Secretary of Health and Human Services.

Maybe President Obama should do what he did following Bill Richardson’s withdrawal as the Commerce Secretary nominee — look to a Republican. There’s a better chance of avoiding an ethics problem that way.

UPDATE: Nancy Killefer, Obama’s nominee for “Chief Performance Officer,” an OMB position, has also withdrawn due to tax payment issues.

I’m reminded of David Frum’s story about the legendary Harvard Law School professor Paul Bator, whose course in civil procedure I had the privilege of taking when he visited at Stanford. David recalls how Bator, one of the few conservatives teaching at an elite law school, told his class the story of James Landis. Landis was a famous New Deal figure, the dean of Harvard Law School, and a friend and adviser to the Kennedy family. It was widely assumed, when John Kennedy became president, that Landis would be nominated to the Supreme Court — until it was discovered that Landis hadn’t filed tax returns for years.

Bator’s comment was: “What is it with these liberals?”

JOHN adds: Maybe the commercial was the last straw.

The Obama administration is off to a surprisingly rocky start. They ran a great campaign, but after only two weeks in office the wheels are starting to come off. Nothing that can’t be remedied–yet–but it’s going to be a long four years if Team Obama doesn’t get its act together.

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