Screeching liberal harridan Katrina vanden Heuvel, editor of The Nation magazine, has come out in favor of dumping Daschle for his tax and lobbyist problems:
This was a campaign about change. Obama spoke eloquently of ending the way Washington does business and curbing the exploitation of public service for private gain. And he followed through with his early executive order attempting to slow the "revolving door" that has allowed so many former government officials to quickly enter the ranks of registered lobbyists. But slowing that revolving door is only the first step in ending the legalized corruption of the town's lobbying culture.
Daschle's tax problems have, so far, attracted the lion's share of scrutiny. And he may well make it through the Senate---though one leading Democratic Senator told me Sunday that he may not vote for his former colleague's confirmation. But Daschle's potential conflicts of interest should persuade Obama to make this a "teachable moment" and find another public servant to tackle the critical task of healthcare reform.
If Obama stated clearly that regulators in his administration should not have any financial ties to the industries they regulate, he'd revive the change brand he campaigned and won on. Sure, there are a slew of reforms that need to be put in place to dismantle the legalized corruption of lobbying in DC,, but Obama could begin by asking Daschle to step aside.
Don't get too excited. Vanden Heuvel's pick to replace Daschle? Howard Dean.
And, lo and behold, the New York Times also weighs in, asking Daschle to step down:
Mr. Daschle is another in a long line of politicians who move cozily between government and industry. We don’t know that his industry ties would influence his judgments on health issues, but they could potentially throw a cloud over health care reform. Mr. Daschle could clear the atmosphere by withdrawing his name.
Someone look out the window and see if pigs are flying.
Hat Tip: Ed Lasky