Skip to comments.Lois Lerner Directly Involved in IRS Targeting, Letters Show
Posted on 05/24/2013 7:06:42 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
A series of letters suggests that senior IRS official Lois Lerner was directly involved in the agencys targeting of conservative groups as recently as April 2012, more than nine months after she first learned of the activity.
Lerner, the director of the IRS exempt organizations office in Washington, D.C., signed cover letters to 15 conservative organizations currently represented by the American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ) between in March and April of 2012. The letters, such as this one sent to the Ohio Liberty Council on March 16, 2012, informed the groups applying for tax-exempt status that the IRS was unable to make a final determination on your exempt status without additional information, and included a list of detailed questions of the kind that a Treasury inspector generals audit found to be inappropriate. Some of the groups to which Lerner sent letters are still awaiting approval.
Lerner has denied involvement in the targeting, which she has blamed on a few front-line people in the agencys Cincinnati field office. I have not done anything wrong, she told members of the House oversight committee on Wednesday. However, she then refused to answer any questions, citing protection under the Fifth Amendment. She has since been placed on (paid) administrative leave, and the committee may call her to testify again.
One thing is clear: this correspondence shows [Lerners] direct involvement in the scheme, wrote Jay Sekulow, chief counsel for the ACLJ. Further, sending a letter from the top person in the IRS Exempt Organization division to a small Tea Party group also underscores the intimidation used in this targeting ploy.
The letters coincide with former IRS commissioner Douglas Shulmans March 2012 testimony before Congress, in which he said there was absolutely no targeting of conservative groups at the agency. Months later, an internal IRS investigation concluded that the agency had engaged in such targeting. Obama-administration officials have insisted the targeting stopped in May 2012, although a number of ACLJ clients have received similar requests for information from the IRS within the past year, according to chief counsel Jay Sekulow.
Congressman Drill: "What? You used the power of the federal government to harass, intimidate, impoverish, and imprison political opponents of the Democratic party."
Lerner: "Yes, but that wasn't wrong."
Congressman Drill: "You sacrificed kittens to Satan, parked in a handicapped zone, and tore the tag off your mattress!"
Lerner: "Well, yes, but that wasn't wrong."
Congressman Drill: "You turned over classified information to al Qaeda, put ricin in the champagne fountain at the Republican convention, and framed the Tea Party for the Katyn Forest massacre!"
Lerner: "You say that like it's a bad thing."
Congressman Drill: "You gunned the engine on your SUV to increase Global Warming and blamed Bush! Don't you think that's wrong?"
Lerner: "Well, I guess it depends on what the definition of 'wrong' is."
Maybe Ingram is being isolated. they might be waiting for someone to point the finger at her. People in the IRS may be asking themselves, 'Why does she get a pass?'.
this has been my contention from the beginning. As much as I detest the BOLO target list, I think they will be able to weasel word themselves out of trouble with that since there are other BOLO target lists and have been for years.
It is the development of the questions which will bring the most bang for the buck. Who wrote them. Who signed off on using them. Why would the IRS agents knowingly use them when this goes so far against the grain that it cannot be talked out of.
I would fire every IRS agent who sent them regardless of their protestations. Tough crap on them. They knew it was wrong and so they must go. No federal worker is required to complete an illegal act.
Unlike the battle cry for Nixon (follow the money) this time I kept saying FOLLOW THE QUESTIONS.
I recall seeing a post that stated she was the one to write the questions. I may be wrong.
Lying liars gonna lie.
Thats impossible. She testified she was innocent before taking a fifth.
EXACTLY. The IRS front line paper pushers did not have the resources to have done the research necessary to formulate a majority of the specific targeted questions that involved individual associations and other such seemingly IRS irrelevant issues. There was and are both a political and research component to this scandal.
I actually admire Ms Lerner in a way: She does not back the down for anyone — wrong though she may be. Her gaze is unblinkingly steady. She has bigger stones than Boner.
When will Republicans (other than Gowdy and Palin and West) learn this (at least, when they are pursuing what is RIGHT?)