Cross-posted by Gary Fouse
William J Lynn III
As candidate, Barack Obama repeatedly offered us not only "Change we can believe in", but openness and transparency in government. As President-elect, he has proceeded to bring in a sackful of former Clinton Administration officials, some with questions lingering over the heads (Bill Richardson, Hillary Clinton, Eric Holder, etc).
Add to this list the names of Treasury Secretary-designate Tim Geithner and his pick for Asst. Secretary of Defense, William J Lynn III.
Geithner, who as Treasury Secretary, would oversee the IRS, has recently, shall we say, been overseen by the IRS. Geithner owed back taxes to the IRS in the total of $34,023 for the years 2001-2004. In 2006, he paid part of it back when that agency audited him. Then, just recently, he paid the remainder plus $8,679 in interest.
Just how recently? As soon as Obama picked him for the Treasury spot.
What is Obama's reaction? "It was an honest mistake."
Let's leave aside the question of what would happen to you and me if we owed the IRS $34,000. Doesn't this pick put the lie to Obama's claim of Change and Transparency? What goes into the thinking of pushing a man through as Treasury Secretary who failed to pay over $34,000 in back taxes-until he was audited and then nominated for the top spot at Treasury? The answer is easy; it is the same thinking that selects Hillary Clinton as Secretary of State despite the fact that her husband is receiving millions and millions of dollars from countries like the UAE and Saudi Arabia.
Then there is Obama's selection of William J Lynn III to be Asst. Defense Secretary. Lynn, who served at Defense in the Clinton Administration, then went on to become a lobbyist for the Raytheon Corp-a defense contractor. What is the problem here?
Didn't Obama pledge that no lobbyists would hold any position in his administration?
Yes, he did-emphatically.
Yet, Obama now insists that Lynn came so highly recommended that he had to make an exception.
So where is all the change that Obama promised us? To me, it looks like business as usual in Washington. Except for Obama himself, not even the faces are new.