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Friday, May 17, 2013

Roundup of the Latest News on IRS Scandal

The abuse of power is so widespread it's hard to imagine it happened without people at the top knowing about it!
  • USA Today has the analysis of approvals of tax exempt groups. The first Tea Party group was approved in 90 days. After the mysterious change in policy, there wouldn't be another Tea Party group approved for 27 months. Meanwhile, approval for liberal groups sailed through.
  • In all, about 471 conservative groups had their tax exempt status delayed and with unlawful scrutiny. Only three examples of similar scrutiny for liberal groups was found.
  • In 2011 Conservative watchdog group Media Trackers filed with the IRS to achieve nonprofit status. The application got stuck in Obama-induced IRS limbo. In 2012 the same group changed its name and filed again with the IRS as “Greenhouse Solutions.” They were granted nonprofit status in 3 weeks.
    IRS agents in Cincinnati insist that "they simply did what their bosses ordered."
  • IRS employees gave political donations overwhelmingly in favor of Obama. One of those at the heart of the scandal has a husband whose law firm has close ties to the Obama campaign.
  • Another IRS employee in the division which oversaw this scandal was awarded a $103,390 bonus. She's now been put in charge of IRS implementation of ObamaCare!
  • Karl Rove reminds us that it was Democrats in the U.S. Senate who constantly wrote the IRS demanding an investigation of Tea Party groups. Obviously those demands were not ignored.
Need further proof that the IRS under Obama is out of control? Another of those groups targeted for investigation was none other than Billy Graham, a revered Christian leader. That's right, they even went after Billy Graham!

Graham's son Franklin sent President Obama a letter (PDF). From the report in Politico:
Graham said that “in light” of the IRS admission that it targeted tea party groups for added scrutiny, “I do not believe that the IRS audit of our two organizations last year is a coincidence – or justifiable.”

“While these audits not only wasted taxpayer money, they wasted money contributed by donors for ministry purposes as we had to spend precious resources servicing the IRS agents in our offices,” Graham wrote in the letter, which was shared with POLITICO. “I believe that someone in the administration was targeting and attempting to intimidate us. This is morally wrong and unethical – indeed some would call it ‘un-American.”
Obama Dodges Question on White House Involvement

In the press conference Thursday Obama was asked "Can you assure the American people that nobody in the White House knew about the agency’s actions before your counsel’s office found out on April 22nd?" His answer was very curious. He did not answer the question but instead said "Let me make sure that I answer your specific question. I can assure you that I certainly did not know anything about the IG report before the IG report had been leaked through the press." How was that an answer to a "specific question" whether anyone in the White House knew about the IRS practice before the scandal broke? The reporter didn't even ask about the Inspector General's report that Obama referred to.

More questions will need to be asked, THEN ANSWERED! One political analyst in Washington put it this way:
Trey Hardin: “I will tell you this on the IRS front. I’ve worked in this town for over 20 years in the White House and on Capitol Hill and I can say with a very strong sense of certainty that there are people very close to this president that not only knew what the IRS were doing but authorized it. It simply just does not happen at an agency level like that without political advisers likely in the West Wing certainly connected to the president’s ongoing campaign organization.”
There are some Washington reporters still willing to carry Obama's water. Ezra Klein at the Washington Post has decreed that the scandals are over because Obama has spoken and told us there's nothing wrong. Corruption and stupidity still go hand in hand!

Finally, the evasions on the IRS scandal, like Benghazi, remind me of these words from an Obama radio address in August 2010:

 Obama: "The only people who don't want to disclose the truth are people with something to hide."

UPDATE: IRS Hid Investigation Until After Election!
  • NBC's Lisa Myers reported this morning that the IRS  deliberately chose not to reveal that it had wrongly targeted conservative groups until after the 2012 presidential election. Did IRS officials lie to Congress when questions were raised in 2012?
  • An Obama tax exempt group was approved in 34 days at the same time conservative groups were put on hold for months, even years.
  • Senior Democratic Sen. Max Baucus, who recently slapped Obamacare as a "train wreck," believes that the IRS scandal is just beginning and that "a lot more" damaging information will be revealed, likely at congressional hearings."I have a hunch that a lot more is going to come out, frankly."
  • CBS News Bob Schieffer: I mean, just all of a sudden you have this thing with the Justice Department where they’re getting all these phone records of all the reporters. The Attorney General, well he didn’t know anything about it. You get to the IRS, they don’t seem to know anything about the Tea Party thing. You come to White House, they don’t know anything about Benghazi. Somebody’s got to grab hold of this thing. It’s very, very disturbing what we’re seeing here.
  • Kimberly Strassel at the Wall Street Journal traces years of Obama attacks on conservatives and concludes: "according to Mr. Obama, he is "outraged" and "angry" that the IRS looked into the very groups and individuals that he spent years claiming were shady, undemocratic, even lawbreaking." Obama didn't need to make the call ordering the IRS to investigate conservatives. They heard him loud and clear every day!
  • John Fund describes Obama's weak management style and raises the question about Chicago pal Valerie Jarrett's possible role in all this.
When these scandals first broke I pointed to Obama's attack on conservatives at the commencement address at Ohio State University earlier this month. I'm glad to see the same theme repeated:

 

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