A few days back the Times front-paged a story about Anita Dunn, Obama advisor and well-paid corporate consultant. Yeah, yeah, one more high minded progressive getting rich while peddling hope and change. But the story ended with a bit of a he-said/they said confusion:
Among its [SKDKnickerbocker, a communications firm] biggest assignments was representing a business coalition seeking to reduce tax rates on about $1 trillion in offshore earnings. Ms. Rosen told members of the corporate team that the Treasury Department was unwilling to go to bat for the idea, one participant recalled. SKDK and several senior Treasury officials say they never discussed the issue.
But an official with knowledge of the issue said Ms. Rosen had spoken by phone with Jake Siewert, then a senior adviser to Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner, asking whether there was any chance that the administration would allow such a plan to be included in a debt deal then under discussion. Mr. Siewert told Ms. Rosen that the idea had no administration support, acccording to the official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity.
Ms. Rosen acknowledged that she probably spoke to officials at the Treasury press office to learn the administration’s public position on the tax plan.
When The New York Times asked the Treasury Department last week about its contact with SKDK on the issue, that inquiry was forwarded to the firm within an hour.
Today the Times is back (on page A25) with confirmation that they were right and Ms. Rosen has memory issues:
WASHINGTON — The Treasury Department said Thursday that a communications firm with close ties to President Obama talked to the administration about allowing tax breaks for its corporate clients on more than $1 trillion in offshore revenues.
Hilary Rosen, a partner at the firm, SKDKnickerbocker, who is also a prominent Obama supporter, arranged a phone call last year with Jake Siewert, then a senior adviser to Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner, to determine whether the administration might reverse its position on the offshore tax issue, according to a department spokeswoman.
Mr. Siewert said the administration would not, the spokeswoman said.
The firm has insisted that it never spoke with senior Treasury Department officials about the offshore tax issue and that it does not lobby policy makers on issues affecting its corporate clients. Jill Zuckman, a partner at SKDK, said Thursday that Ms. Rosen “did not remember having that conversation” with Mr. Siewert.
Human memory is tricky, and sometimes convenient.
Hilary Rosen is probably best known for her attack, later withdrawn, on Ann Romney and stay at home moms.