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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

U.S. Treasury Nominee Shrugs Off Old Scandal

WASHINGTON -- The White House acknowledged Tuesday night that U.S. Treasury secretary nominee John Snow had a 1982 drunken driving arrest and a 1988 child support dispute with his ex-wife but said it stood by him for the post.

"Both of the facts were known to the White House and we provided them to the Senate, and the president looks forward to the hearings on Treasury-designate Snow and believes he will make an outstanding secretary," said White House spokesman Ari Fleischer. "This doesn't change anything."

The information was in documents published Tuesday on the Senate Finance Committee's web site. Snow is to appear before the committee next Tuesday for a nomination hearing, and he was asked to provide a statement in advance.

Treasury and White House officials have been briefing the railway executive for a potential grilling on economic issues at his confirmation hearing. The information about Snow's two-decade-old arrest and his child-support dispute had not been made public before Tuesday night.

In the documents, Snow said he was arrested "for driving under the influence of alcohol" in West Valley City, Utah. Snow said the charge was dismissed before trial. "I have never been charged with or convicted of any other offense," Snow said in his statement.

In 1988, Snow's former wife filed a suit against him alleging failure to pay child support and other costs for his two sons. Most of the claims against Snow in the case were dismissed, the documents said. "In order to spare the family the difficulty of a trial, the parties settled the remaining issues in dispute," Snow's statement said.

Rail executive Snow, 63, chairman of CSX Corp., was chosen by U.S. President George W. Bush to succeed Paul O'Neill, who resigned under pressure last month after a gaffe-marred tenure.

If confirmed, Snow will be Bush's anointed champion for a $674 billion economic stimulus package unveiled this month -- a measure centered on the elimination of taxes on stock dividends that looks set for a rough ride on Capitol Hill.

The Senate Finance Committee said it would hold Snow's confirmation hearing Tuesday. Once a nomination is approved by the committee, it goes before the full Senate, which then votes on the nominee.

In his statement to the committee, Snow said that over the course of his 30-year career as a CSX executive, a director of other companies and as a public servant with the Transportation Department he was named as a defendant in several civil actions, including several under the Securities Exchange Act, generally as part of a group. Virtually all of the cases were closed or dismissed.