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Thursday, December 11, 2008

Blagojevich Scandal Dominates Obama’s News Conference

Introduced by President-elect Obama today as Health and Human Services Secretary-designate, Tom Daschle endorsed Obama last February during the Democratic primary. Photo credits: Campusprogress.org.

Kate Seelye at the Caucus (NY Times) blogged Obama’s presser this morning when he introduced former Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle as Health and Human Services Secretary-designate in Chicago.

At the top of her post, Seelye writes:

“Bottom Line 11:59 a.m. Mr. Obama was certainly more assertive in his condemnation of the Illinois scandal than he had been a couple of days ago, and he stated flatly that he had no involvement with the selling of his Senate seat.

“The U.S. attorney had also said there was no indication that Mr. Obama was in any way involved. But Mr. Obama did note that his staff was still gathering facts about whether anyone on his team might have been involved, leaving the door open that some inconvenient news could emerge. It seems unlikely that Mr. Obama’s statements today will put these questions to rest.

“And poor Mr. Daschle! Like Al Gore on Monday, Mr. Obama’s co-stars were overlooked as reporters questioned Mr. Obama about the scandal. Still, in the health-care question, Mr. Obama indicated quite clearly that the Bush tax cuts may not be rolled back as fast as he had promised, if at all. In the end, of course, dealing with health care and the rest of the economic emergency in this country will have a more lasting effect on his presidency than the current scandal in his home state.”

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