Unbelievable: Obama appointee withdraws because of ... tax problem

How many does this make? Geithner, Daschle, now Killefer — is that it? It feels like more, thanks to Rangel and, allegedly, Caroline. Almost makes me regret that Team Barry couldn’t push Princess through to the Senate so that we could dump that one on him, too.


When her selection was announced by Obama on Jan. 7, The Associated Press disclosed that in 2005 the District of Columbia government had placed a lien on her home in the upscale Wesley Heights neighborhood. The local government alleged that just three years after she left a high-powered Treasury post she began to fail to pay unemployment compensation tax for a household employee. And she failed to make the required quarterly payments for a year and half, whereupon a lien for $946.69 was placed on her home.

During that period, Killefer and her husband, an economics professor, had a teenage son and daughter, but she had two nannies and a personal assistant to run her life when she was on the road, she told Harvard business students back then.

The job she was up for? “Chief Performance Officer.”

Follow the timeline here. Daschle knew he had a tax problem last June; Geithner knew he had a tax problem no later than November. Killefer’s problem dates to 2005. Point being, none of this came as any eleventh-hour surprise to Obama’s vetters … and yet all three were nominated anyway. Exit question: Why? Killefer is expendable but Geithner and Daschle are both crucial to The One’s plans; the former’s his economic quarterback and the latter’s his point man on universal health care. If you know you’re going to have this problem with both of them, why hand the media an irresistible narrative by trying to sneak Killefer in there too? Doesn’t this make Daschle’s nomination even more precarious?