Geithner’s Tax Problems a ‘Stain’ He Can’t Wash Off, Senator Says

By Josiah Ryan | February 4, 2009 | 6:25 PM EST

Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.), center, speaks out against the economic stimulus measure making its way through Congress during a news conference at the Capitol in Washington, Thursday, Jan. 29, 2009. He is flanked by Sen. Jim Bunning (R-Ky.), left, and Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.), right. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

( - Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner’s failure to pay $34,000 in taxes is a “stain he won’t be able to wash off” and an “embarrassment” to the Obama administration, Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) told at the Capitol on Wednesday.
“It’s an embarrassment to the Obama administration, and it looks like we got another one of these high-flying guys who is the master of the universe and plays above the rules everybody else has to live by,” Sessions told “That’s not the image he [Obama] campaigned on, so it’s tough for him.
“He has a spot he is not going to be able to wash off,” added Sessions. “It’s a stain on his reputation he is not going to be able to wash off.”
In an interview with NBC on Tuesday, President Obama said he had made a mistake in sending the wrong signal to Americans by picking former Sen. Tom Daschle (D-S.D.) to serve as secretary of Health and Human Services, even though he had failed to properly pay $140,000 in back taxes and interest.
“I think I messed up,” said Obama. “I screwed up in not recognizing the perception that even though this is an honest mistake, I believe, on Tom's part – that, you know, ordinary people are out there paying taxes every day – and whether it's an intentional mistake or not, it was sending the wrong signal. So again, this was something that was my fault.”