The claim made in this memo is that the administration didn't want Sestak to leave his congressional seat so they sweetened the pot to get him to drop out of his primary with Arlen Specter; a position he could hold while remaining a sitting congressman was then offered. Small problem. The position he is suspected of being offered isn't to be held by a government employee which, as a congressman, Sestak would continue to be.
Byron York at the Washington Examiner makes the catch and links to the page on the White House website that clarifies it. Here's what it says in the very first paragraph:
The Board consists of not more than 16 members appointed by the President from among individuals who are not employed by the Federal Government. Members are distinguished citizens selected from the national security, political, academic, and private sectors. The Board is a nonpartisan body, independent of the Intelligence Community, free from day-to-day management or operational responsibilities, and with full access to the complete range of intelligence-related information.Reports have been - and Sestak has since given them further credence with his subsequent statements - that the position in question was on this Intelligence Advisory Board. If this is in fact the position Sestak was offered, the White House has a new legal dilemma to deal with.
York points out that - like he did initially by admitting the White House offered him a job to drop out - Sestak may have said too much (VIDEO BELOW) when asked about the alleged position he was offered after Bauer's memo was released:
The statement from White House counsel Robert Bauer did not specifically mention the intelligence board, but speaking to reporters Friday, Sestak said of his conversation with Clinton, “At the time, I heard the words ‘presidential board,’ and that’s all I heard…I heard ‘presidential board,’ and I think it was intel.” In addition, the Times reported that “people briefed on the matter said one option was an appointment” to the intelligence board. But the White House could not legally have placed Sestak on the board.As for why a position such as this one would be off limits to a congressman, it seems obvious on its face. It's a conflict of interest and could lead to corruption. It could short circuit the checks and balances so critical to our Constitution. Aren't we seeing an Executive Branch already sucking power right out of Congress?
One last thing here. Ever since this scandal began, Sestak has attempted to use his ill-advised admission that he was offered a job by the White House as a demonstration of his honesty and integrity. In subsequent responses about the matter, he continued to say, "I answered (the question) honestly". With that in mind, have a look at this excerpt from the statement released by Sestak after the Bauer memo came out:
He (Clinton) said that White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel had spoken with him about my being on a Presidential Board while remaining in the House of Representatives. I said no. I told President Clinton that my only consideration in getting into the Senate race or not was whether it was the right thing to do for Pennsylvania working families and not any offer.Sestak's revelation after the Bauer memo that he thinks the position offered was in "intel" may have been something he answered honestly but it may have been something - again - the White House wishes he wouldn't have said. Sestak may be proving that he's a bad liar. That's good for America but increasingly looking like it's NOT good for the Obama administration.
This entire video worth watching but fast forward to hear Sestak talk about the type of Presidential Board position he was offered; he actually does it twice. At the 9:20 mark, he says it was either "Intelligence or Defense". At the 12:40 mark, he says, "I think it was intel".
Be sure to read York's ARTICLE