Another Tax Evasion, Another Obama Administration Casualty
President Obama’s team of advisers, initially touted for its wealth of experience and qualifications, continues to unravel as Nancy Killefer withdraws her nomination for chief performance officer, CNN reports.
This tax-evasion revelation comes on the heels of similar scandals that have embroiled Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and health czar-designee Tom Daschle. While Killefer’s post is not as high-profile as Geithner’s or Daschle’s, its central focus is fiscal responsibility. A lack of such discipline in Killefer’s personal life would reflect poorly on her integrity for the job.
If her case were an isolated one, she might be able to push through with an apology, as Geithner has and Daschle likely will. But now that a pattern has formed, she appears to be the proverbial straw that broke the camel’s back.
She is the second Obama nominee to withdraw her name. New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson gave up his commerce secretary nomination amidst a federal investigation into his dealings with a California financial company contracting with the state government.
UPDATE: From the White House, here’s Killefer’s letter to Obama:
February 3, 2009
Dear Mr. President,
I recognize that your agenda and the duties facing your Chief Performance Officer are urgent. I have also come to realize in the current environment that my personal tax issue of D.C. Unemployment tax could be used to create exactly the kind of distraction and delay those duties must avoid. Because of this I must reluctantly ask you to withdraw my name from consideration.
I am deeply honored to have been selected by you and you have my deep appreciation for your confidence in me. You have my heartfelt support and best wishes for success in all your endeavors.