Las Vegas Sun

September 1, 2014

Currently: 104° — Complete forecast | Log in | Create an account

Sun editorial:

Admitting his mistake

President Barack Obama publicly accepts blame for his nominees’ tax problems

For nearly eight long years, this country suffered with a president, George W. Bush, who never admitted to making a mistake. His steadfast refusal to fess up to errors, including colossal failures of judgment in the handling of Iraq and Hurricane Katrina, led many Americans to distrust his administration.

It wasn’t until the closing weeks of his presidency, when Bush hit the media circuit in an effort to influence his legacy, that he at least hinted at misgivings over some of his actions in the Oval Office.

We are barely two weeks into President Barack Obama’s administration, but the new occupant of the White House has shown that he is willing to publicly admit when he is wrong.

Obama’s admission Tuesday came after he accepted the withdrawn nominations of Tom Daschle as health and human services secretary and Nancy Killefer as the federal government’s chief performance officer due to their failure to pay taxes in a timely fashion. Those problems — coupled with revelations of Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner’s tax troubles — gave critics an opening to question the president’s high ethical standards, something he quickly realized.

Saying that he “screwed up” and would take responsibility for these mistakes, Obama said in a televised interview on NBC: “It’s important for this administration to send a message that there aren’t two sets of rules, you know — one for prominent people and one for ordinary folks who have to pay their taxes.”

Americans are a forgiving people, particularly when their leaders own up to their mistakes. With these distractions behind him, we believe Obama will be able to move forward with the important work that lies ahead.

Join the Discussion:

Check this out for a full explanation of our conversion to the LiveFyre commenting system and instructions on how to sign up for an account.

Full comments policy

Previous Discussion: comments so far…

Comments are moderated by Las Vegas Sun editors. Our goal is not to limit the discussion, but rather to elevate it. Comments should be relevant and contain no abusive language. Comments that are off-topic, vulgar, profane or include personal attacks will be removed. Full comments policy. Additionally, we now display comments from trusted commenters by default. Those wishing to become a trusted commenter need to verify their identity or sign in with Facebook Connect to tie their Facebook account to their Las Vegas Sun account. For more on this change, read our story about how it works and why we did it.

Only trusted comments are displayed on this page. Untrusted comments have expired from this story.

No trusted comments have been posted.