Geithner faces questions on taxes

U.S. Treasury secretary nominee Timothy Geithner


Scott Jagow: President Obama's nominee for Treasury Secretary will be on Capitol Hill today. Timothy Geithner was supposed to be a shoe-in. But now, of course, he'll face questions about his personal taxes. More from Nancy Marshall Genzer.

Nancy Marshall Genzer: When Timothy Geithner appears before the Senate Finance Committee this morning, he'll face some pointed questions. How could the head of the New York Fed not pay self-employment taxes for several years? And how could Geithner have employed a housekeeper temporarily without work papers?

Mark Gertler has some ideas. He's a member of the New York Fed's advisory board, and knows Geithner professionally.

Mark Gertler: He's so focused on his job that maybe other stuff he didn't pay as much attention to as he might have wanted to with the benefit of hindsight.

Geithner has played a key role in bank mergers and the bailout. Critics say the bailout hasn't done enough to loosen the credit crunch. Still, securities lawyer Bill Singer says Geithner's the best we've got.

Bill Singer: Do we give him a Mulligan here, a do-over, because he's probably the most qualified person for the job?

Lawmakers appear to be leaning toward giving Geithner another shot, despite the grilling he'll probably get today.

In Washington, I'm Nancy Marshall Genzer for Marketplace.

About the author

Nancy Marshall-Genzer is a senior reporter for Marketplace based in Washington, D.C. covering daily news.
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With all due respect, I doubt that Mr. Gertler's brief sound bite is any more reflective of his ultimate opinion of Tim Geithner's nomination than the brief quote attributed to me. You must understand that Marketplace does not have unlimited time and its editors/reporters must try to capture the "essence" of an issue.

I would respectfully refer you to my more deliberate thought piece: Geithner: A Devil's Bargain(which I suspect will prove more satisfying to you). You may access it at http://www.brokeandbroker.com/index.php?a=blog&id=111

Bill Singer

'So focused on job' - should not be an excuse for this lapse. Would all persons have been treated the same for this mistake?

We need to get away from this statement that so and so is best for the job. Everybody is expendable.

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