Losing Daschle Hurts, but Won't Kill Health Plans
Replacing his political clout will be the biggest challenge
By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 3, 2009 4:13 PM CST
Former Sen. Tom Daschle, President Barack Obama's former choice to head the Health and Human Services Department.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – The loss of Tom Daschle is a blow to President Obama’s plans for health-care reform, but the administration still has the resources to get the job done, Jonathan Cohn writes in the New Republic. Daschle was not only to head the Department of Health and Human Services, but also a White House office on health reform—which is where his political know-how would’ve come in handy.

“Daschle had a combination of talents not easy to find in one person,” Cohn writes. “But that doesn’t mean you can’t replace those skills, particularly if you’re willing to find several people instead of one.” While number of current or former governors could take over the cabinet position, Cohn pushes scholar Jeanne Lambrew for the reform office: “In fact, based on things I’ve heard, she’s been doing much of it for a while.”