VIDEO: Tom Daschle Withdraws Nomination for Secretary of Health and Human Services

Amie Newman

Daschle has given up his chance at Secretary of HHS and will not be the "architect of America's health care reform" after all.

Updated 6:20pm EDT

Tom Daschle withdrew his nomination for Secretary of Health and Human Services under President Obama. It’s unfortunate on many levels, not the least of which is that Daschle was on task to lead a forceful health care reform effort.

In addition, with HIV prevention groups advocating for an appropriately hefty dose of funding in the economic stimulus bill, it may have been a boon to have Daschle as an advocate.

But Daschle concluded that he did not want to risk becoming a distraction from the President’s commitment to pass health care reform legislation. Daschle told MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell that he "realized [he] can’t pass health care if [he’s] too much of a distraction."

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"I will not be the architect of America’s health care reform, but I remain one of its most fervent supporters," Daschle said.

The Huffingtost Post is reporting on possible replacements. At the top of the list? Governor Howard Dean and "remember him" Senator Bill Bradley. 

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