Skip to comments.Carney: White House, Treasury strategized how to tell public
Posted on 05/21/2013 3:05:22 PM PDT by Sub-Driver
Carney: White House, Treasury strategized how to tell public
By Justin Sink - 05/21/13 02:47 PM ET
Officials in the White House discussed how and when the Internal Revenue Service would tell the public that the agency had targeted political groups, White House press secretary Jay Carney said Tuesday.
Carney said that Mark Childress, the White House deputy chief of staff, twice spoke with officials at the Treasury Department about the strategy for revealing conservative targeting.
Childress and the Treasury officials discussed the possibility that Lois Lerner, the IRS official who oversaw the agency's tax-exempt organization, would reveal that an inspector general's investigation had found misconduct in a speech. They also discussed the possibility that then-acting IRS director Steve Miller could receive questions about the IG investigation in congressional testimony.
According to Carney, the officials discussed what [Miller] would say if asked about the issue.
The press secretary went on to characterize the discussion as just part of trying to find out when and under what circumstances this information would be released, made public, and what those findings would be.
But Carney insisted that the White House had no knowledge of the agency's eventual plan to plant a question at an ABA conference for Lerner earlier this month.
It's a nice hypothetical, but that didn't happen, Carney said.
Carney said that while multiple senior staff were made aware of the findings of the IG report, the decision by the IRS to plant the question and publicly apologize for the targeting came from outside the White House.
He added that he, like President Obama, was unaware of the targeting before news coverage of Lerner's revelation, and that he did not help formulate a press strategy ahead of the news.
I was not informed, Carney said, adding that he rejected the suggestion that I should have known, or that the president should have known earlier so that I could have said something, or done something.
All of these questions suggest that somehow the president should have done something in the midst of an independent [investigation], Carney added.
Carney also said Tuesday he was "confident" that nobody in the White House was aware of the investigation before April 16, the first time the White House acknowledges officials were notified that an IG report was being prepared.
"I am confident that this is when the first notification came, as part of a series of items that were being included in general heads up about pending matters to a member of the White House Counsel's Office," Carney said.
Republicans on Capitol Hill again accused the White House of shifting their story on who knew about the IRS scandal.
On Monday, Carney revealed for the first time that White House Counsel Kathy Ruemmler was originally told that the IRS inspector general was finishing a report about IRS employees improperly scrutinizing Tea Party groups. Carney also revealed that Chief of Staff Denis McDonough were informed in April.
Why are we still learning new information about how the White House was involved in the IRS audit? tweeted Brendan Buck, a spokesman for House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio).
I think Obama needs one,too.
Jay is just the mouthpiece for this odious bunch. Unless he’s called to testify before Congress he has no need for an attorney.
Jae Carnie is merely the voicebox of ValJ.
has anyone done a timeline showing what was revealed or not revealed by the press when Obama gave his speech to the Ohio state university graduates? somehow it seems like Obama knew then in order for the words he used to make sense today which means that Carney is still lying.
Notice Jarrett's name isn't anywhere around.
I think he attends important meetings. Not sure how many, or if there is a plan to keep him somewhat uninformed, so he doesn’t say more than they want.
This is the biggest story of the day. Miller said today that the planted question ploy was his idea. Yet, the WH and Treasury were meeting weeks before on how best to spin this scandal. Obama had to know what was going on.
Just the idea of a planted question in this circumstance is “conclusive” evidence of a conspiracy.
Wow.. You need a strategy to tell Americans what you’ve done? Scary.
When things getting too hot on Benghazi, for instance.
“Strategized”? No no no. Let’s be correct, Jay. The word is “conspired”.
I notice Jarret AND Biden are pretty much missing
The question, Mr. Carney is not when you or your boss learned of the investigation. It is whether you knew of the activity? Notice how they are always parsing the language to say “the IG Report” or “the investigation”? Why won’t someone - other than that very attractive reporter, who actually did ask - ask again about the activity or the policy and not let them dodge with an answer about the report?!?!
What was the “hypothetical” question? I don’t get it.
WHY did they suddenly decide to tell the public???? They knew omeome was fixing to blow the lid off this mess.
Here’s what bothers me: Obama spoke to Ohio state university grads on May 6 and it is clear he is warning the country of the tsunami of scandals coming.
He also said he did not know anything until he read about it in the papers.
The problem is that Lois Lerner did not apologize until May 10th which then hit the papers.
I say Obama’s speech indicates he did know before it hit the news.