Obama’s appointment of the former Senate Democratic leader suggests that his pleas for postpartisanship were little more than a clever campaign slogan. Tom Daschle defined Democratic obstructionism during President Bush’s first term (as Eric Holder defined the Clinton Administration’s politicization of the Justice Department during the Arkansas Democrat’s White House tenure).
The Senate should reject the Daschle nomination to help the president make good on the postpartisan pledge he made in his campaign.
UPDATE (02/01/09):Â Since I first posted this, we learned that “Daschle waited nearly a month after being nominated to be secretary of health and human services before informing Barack Obama that he had not paid years of back taxes for the use of a car and driver provided by a wealthy New York investor.”
This leads Ed Whelan of the National Review to conclude
If President Obama were really serious about ending business as usual, he would immediately withdraw the nomination of someone who was cheating big-time on his taxes and who didn’t level with Obama about the problem at the outset.