Former Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle (D-SD) will not be the new Secretary of Health and Human Services, as he has withdrawn his candidacy.
I haven't written anything on this saga - the saga being that Daschle failed to pay over $130,000 in taxes and was paid more than $200,000 by the health care industry he had been nominated to regulate - but I think Daschle did the right thing by withdrawing. Yes, he was an early ally of President Obama, the two are very close and Daschle has a lot of experience on Capitol Hill and with the behemoth of an issue that is health care. But it's queasy to expect that someone - anyone, even something with the reported integrity of Tom Daschle - could receive hundreds of thousands of dollars from someone and then be expected to regulate that very same someone. It just didn't smell right.
For the record, the tipping point for Daschle seemed to be this morning's New York Times editorial (which urged him to withdraw his nomination), which you can read here.