Tag Archive: Lois Lerner


Report Says Former IRS Employees–Think Lois Lerner–Can Still Peruse Your Tax Returns

 

 

 

” Could Lois Lerner still take a look at your tax returns on IRS computers? It sounds preposterous, but a new watchdog report says former IRS employees still have access to IRS computer systems long after they have no official business with the information. The report is by the U.S. Government Accountability Office, an independent, nonpartisan agency that works for Congress. The GAO investigates how the federal government spends taxpayer dollars. In the case of IRS security, the report says not well.

  This report cites significant deficiencies in the security of IRS financial reporting systems. Millions of Americans who are legally required to file taxes are fearful about fraud. The report says the IRS needs to continue improving controls over financial and taxpayer data. In the case of former IRS workers with continuing access to IRS data systems, they need to be cut off.”

 

Forbes

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

IRS May Broaden Rule To Police Political Nonprofits

 

IRS Commissioner John Koskinen testifies before the Financial Services and General Government Subcommittee on February 26, 2014 in Washington, D.C. John Shinkle/POLITICO

This is the picture of arrogance.

 

 

 

” The IRS may broaden a looming controversial rule to police political nonprofits to include political parties and political action committees, the IRS chief said Wednesday.

   IRS Commissioner John Koskinen said the agency may expand a yet-to-be-released rule governing 501(c)(4), “social welfare” groups, to include political groups known as 527s, which focus on elections. It could require them both — as well as other types of tax-exempt groups — to operate under the same definition of “political activity.” “

 

Politico

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

IRS Watchdog Reveals Lois Lerner Missing Emails Now Subject Of Criminal Probe

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

” The IRS’s inspector general confirmed Thursday it is conducting a criminal investigation into how Lois G. Lerner’s emails disappeared, saying it took only two weeks for investigators to find hundreds of tapes the agency’s chief had told Congress were irretrievably destroyed.

  Investigators have already scoured 744 backup tapes and gleaned 32,774 unique emails, but just two weeks ago they found an additional 424 tapes that could contain even more Lerner emails, Deputy Inspector General Timothy P. Camus told the House Oversight Committee in a rare late-night hearing meant to look into the status of the investigation.

“There is potential criminal activity,” Mr. Camus said.”

    The accompanying video , while not directly addressing the latest news on the “destroyed” emails’ recent recovery , provides readers willing to spend the time watching it with a broad overview of the entire scandal .

    Washington Times has much more on the latest developments in what is finally turning into a criminal investigation of Obama’s IRS .

Lerner Met With DOJ Month Before 2010 Elections

 

 

 

 

” Judicial Watch, a constitutionally conservative, non-profit educational foundation, has new evidence against Lois Lerner in the IRS Tea Party targeting case.   
    
  Documents they’ve just obtained from the Department of Justice show that the former IRS official met with Department of Justice’s Election Crimes Division one month before the 2010 elections.
      
  The Justice Department has withheld more than 800 pages of documents in the Lerner investigation, citing “taxpayer privacy” and “deliberative privilege.”
   
These new documents dramatically show how the Justice Department is up to its neck in the IRS scandal and can’t be trusted to investigate crimes associated with the IRS abuses that targeted Obama’s critics. And it is of particular concern that the DOJ’s Public Integrity Section, which would ordinarily investigate the IRS abuses, is now implicated in the IRS crimes,” Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton said.

  Chris Farrell, director of research and investigations for Judicial Watch, talked more about the significance of these newly discovered DOJ meetings, on CBN News Today, Dec. 9. “

Thanks to CBN News

Lawsuit Based On Alleged Government Targeting Of Tea Party Group Organizer Can Go Forward

 

 

 

 

” Plaintiff Selim Zherka filed this … action claiming that employees of the Internal Revenue Service hindered his application for tax exempt status and initiated an investigation against him as part of a broader effort to penalize members of the Tea Party for their political activities….

  Beginning in 2009, plaintiff published newspaper articles and held rallies criticizing government officials for political corruption and “confiscatory tax policies.” Plaintiff organized and supported the creation of the Tea Party, a political party that received extensive publicity in the news media. At some point, plaintiff sought tax-exempt status for an organization he and others used primarily for educational purposes. However, plaintiff claims that defendant Lois Lerner …, an IRS employee, subjected his application to an inordinately high level of scrutiny, forcing him to abandon his efforts to obtain tax-exempt status. [The case against Lois Lerner was dismissed because “Plaintiff has not satisfied its burden of showing that [he] served defendant Lerner with a copy of the summons and complaint.” — EV]

  Plaintiff alleges that in 2011, agent Ryan of the Federal Bureau of Investigation … and agent Ashcroft … of the IRS began an investigation into his commercial real estate dealings. Plaintiff claims these defendants issued over 75 subpoenas to his business associates, threatening them with criminal prosecution should they withhold information incriminating plaintiff. Plaintiff alleges that as a result, many of these business associates terminated their relationship with him out of a fear of “running asunder of federal agencies.” He asserts that defendants’ conduct was part of a broader government strategy to penalize Tea Party members for their political speech.

  Plaintiff claims to have lost business as a result of the ongoing investigation. Moreover, he claims that defendants’ actions have chilled his political activities, damaged his reputation, and caused emotional injuries…. “

 

Read more from Eugene Volokh at Wash Post

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lois Lerner Tries Barging Into Neighbor’s Home To Evade Questions

 

 

 

” Lois Lerner attempted to bust into a neighbor’s home uninvited, in a desperate attempt to avoid answering questions about her involvement in the targeting of conservative groups.

  Jason Mattera, author of the explosive new book CRAPITALISM: Liberals Who Make Millions Swiping Your Tax Dollars, recently caught up with the disgraced former IRS official in her ritzy neighborhood outside Washington, D.C.

  Mattera, who publishes the Daily Surge, asked Lerner if she had any regrets for her role in the ongoing IRS corruption case, and if she wanted to take the opportunity to give a genuine apology to conservatives for using the force of government to harass and single them out.”

The Daily Surge

IRS: Hey, Maybe We Do Have Our E-mail Backups

 

 

 

 

 

” Does the IRS actually have their backups for e-mail from the period when Lois Lerner and her group targeted conservative groups for extra scrutiny on tax-exempt applications? The agency claimed a month ago that it overwrote the tapes every six months, in one of the most notorious (and unsuccessful) Friday afternoon document dumps ever. New testimony from one of the IRS’ top lawyers released last night by the House Oversight Committee casts doubt on that story (via Instapundit):

  The IRS might not have lost the backups of former agency administrator Lois Lerner’s emails after all, according to a top IRS official.

  In testimony released Monday, Thomas Kane, the IRS’s deputy associate chief counsel, told House Oversight investigators last week that the agency was examining whether all the back-up tapes which held the emails have been recycled. “

 

 

Now that they’ve had plenty of time to create a bogus email trail they miraculously find the “back-ups” ? Hot Air has more .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rep. Issa: Lerner ‘Broke Some Laws;’ Emails Show Her Attorney ‘Outright Lied A Number of Times’

 

 

Issa Crowley

 

 

 

” House Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) had a testy interview with Candy Crowley on CNN’s “State of the Union” yesterday, where he asserted that Lois Lerner “broke some laws” and “sent 1.1 million tax records” with illegal confidential information “on conservative groups” to the Department of Justice.

  Issa also claimed that Lerner’s attorney has “said things and been not correct, or disingenuous, or outright lied a number of times, and it’s been shown by e-mails.” 

  After pointing out that although Lois Lerner’s emails are missing due to her hard drive crash, 20,000 emails have been retrieved through other means, Candy Crowley asked: “Did Lois Lerner crash her own computer?”

” We will probably never know that – the drive is physically gone,” Issa replied. “

 

CNSNews

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Trey Gowdy’s Not Having It: IRS Head Gets Cute About ‘Lost’ Emails & Has the Grin Wiped Off His Face

 

 

 

 

 

” During a rare Monday night hearing, House Republicans hammered embattled IRS commissioner John Koskinen over the “lost” Lois Lerner emails and over his continued insistence that there was no criminal wrongdoing in their coincidental disappearance.

  While, as to be expected, Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC) repeatedly challenged Koskinen, for instance, when he demanded that he cite a particular statute or statutes (law, viz.) on which to base his claim that no criminal wrongdoing occurred. When the commissioner replied, “you can rely on common sense,” Gowdy went off:

“ Common sense? Instead of a criminal code, you wanna rely on common sense? You can shake your head all you want to commissioner; you have said today that there’s no evidence of criminal wrongdoing and I’m asking you what criminal statutes you have reviewed to reach that conclusion?”

  Koskinen finally conceded: “I have reviewed no criminal statutes.”

  Ironically, the commissioner also insisted that outdated technology was to blame and that it would cost the IRS $10-30 million to update its systems.

  In response, Rep. Scott DesJarlais (R-TN) reminded Koskinen that the IRS paid $89 million in bonuses last year, including $1 million to employees who owed back taxes. Not a good day for the defiant commissioner of the IRS.”

 

 

     John Koskinen is the epitome of the smug , arrogant , elitist bureaucrat . It is a pleasure to see him squirm under the wrathful ire of Rep Gowdy even though there seems to be no new info forthcoming from any of these hearings .

 

 

 

Independent Journal Review

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Is That A Smoking Gun I Smell? IRS Had Archiving Company Contracted In 2005

 

 

 

 

 

” Is that a smoking gun  I smell?  It turns out the IRS contracted with a company that provides email backup services starting in 2005.  This first came to light in the Twitter feed of moregenr, who noticed that the IRS appears on the client list of email  archiving service provider Sonasoft.

  The IRS had a contract with email backup service vendor Sonasoft starting in 2005, according to FedSpending.org, which lists the contract as being for “automatic data processing services.” Sonasoft’s motto is “email archiving done right,” and the company lists the IRS as a customer.

  In 2009, Sonasoft even sent out a Tweet advertising its work for the IRS. “

 

Allen West

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

IRS Has Lost More E-mails . . .

 

 

 

 

 

 

” It’s not just Lois Lerner’s e-mails. The Internal Revenue Service says it can’t produce e-mails from six more employees involved in the targeting of conservative groups, according to two Republicans investigating the scandal.

  The IRS recently informed Ways and Means chairman Dave Camp and subcommittee chairman Charles Boustany that computer crashes resulted in additional lost e-mails, including from Nikole Flax, the chief of staff to former IRS commissioner Steven Miller, who was fired in the wake of the targeting scandal.

  The revelation about Lerner’s e-mails rekindled the targeting scandal and today’s news has further inflamed Republicans. Camp and Boustany are now demanding a special prosecutor to investigate “every angle” of the events that led to Lois Lerner’s revelation in May 2013 that the agency had used inappropriate criteria to review the applications for tax exemption.

  The lawmakers expressed particular outrage that the agency has known since February that it would not be able to produce the e-mails requested by the committee yet did not apprise the committee of that fact, and they charged in a statement that the IRS is attempting to “cover up the fact that it convenient lost key documents in the investigation.” “

 

 

National Review

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Dog Ate My E-Mails, For Two Years

 

 

 

 

 

 

” Who knew that the Obama administration had a penchant for black humor? Earlier this year, in February, President Obama told Bill O’Reilly during an interview on Fox News that there was “not even a smidgen of corruption” in the IRS scandal involving the targeting of conservative nonprofit groups. In July 2013, Treasury Secretary Jack Lew foreshadowed his boss’s nonchalance by insisting that there was “no evidence” that any political appointee had been involved in the scandal.

  Now we may know why. After months of delay in responding to congressional inquiries, the IRS now claims that, for the period of January 2009 to April 2011, all e-mails between Lois Lerner — the IRS official at the center of the scandal — and anyone outside the IRS were wiped out by a “computer crash.” As House Ways and Means chairman Dave Camp wrote in a statement, this loss means that “we are conveniently left to believe that Lois Lerner acted alone.” After all, there isn’t a “smidgen” of e-mail evidence to suggest otherwise.”

 

 

As Mr Fund explains , it is virtually impossible for all of those emails to have disappeared without a trace …

 

 

” A growing number of computer professionals are stepping forward to say that none of this makes sense. Norman Cillo, a former program manager at Microsoft, told The Blaze: “I don’t know of any e-mail administrator [who] doesn’t have at least three ways of getting that mail back. It’s either on the disks or it’s on a TAPE backup someplace on an archive server.” Bruce Webster, an IT expert with 30 years of experience consulting with dozens of private companies, seconds this opinion: “It would take a catastrophic mechanical failure for Lerner’s drive to suffer actual physical damage, but in any case, the FBI should be able to recover something. And the FBI and the Justice Department know it.”

 

 

 

 

    Lies , lies and more lies , that’s all we ever get from the “most open , honest and transparent administration” in history …

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How Ya Gonna Keep ‘Em Out On the Farm?

 

 

 

 

 

” ~As I’ve had cause to remark many times before, American government is corrupt. The IRS scandal is Ground Zero for the corruption of the republic, and, if you want it in a nutshell, the invaluable Judicial Watch just provided it. (Incidentally, the fact that an outside group gets more useful results than Congressional oversight does is itself testament to the diseased state of American institutions: the executive branch treats the legislative branch with ever more open contempt.) Here is Lois Lerner’s email explaining the BOLO (“Be On the Look-Out“) criteria for identifying and scrutinizing what it regards as “Tea Party’ groups:

1. ‘Tea Party’, ‘Patriots’ or ‘9/12 Project’ is referenced in the case file.

2. Issues include government spending, government debt and taxes.

3. Educate the public through advocacy/legislative activities to make America a better place to live.

4. Statements in the case file that are critical of the how the country is being run.

  That last gets to the nub of the matter: Supposedly impartial agencies of the state are explicitly targeting the ruling party’s political enemies. In other words, it’s the merging of the state and the party in order to criminalize opposition: the very definition of a banana republic.”

 

 

Read it all

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Happy Tax Day: RNC Files Lawsuit Against IRS For ‘Illegal Stonewalling’ Of Scandal Documents

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

” The Republican National Committee, just in time for Tax Day, is filing a lawsuit against the IRS over what it calls “illegal stonewalling” of its request for documents related to the agency’s targeting of conservative groups. 

  The RNC called the agency’s refusal so far to produce the documents “unacceptable and inexcusable.” 

” We’re filing this suit because the Obama administration has a responsibility to be transparent and accountable to the American people. The IRS has a legal obligation to answer our inquiry for these records,” RNC Chairman Reince Priebus said in a statement. “If the IRS and the Obama administration don’t have anything to hide, why not answer the request?” “

Fox News has more

Daily Video 4.14.14

Trey Gowdy: Lois Lerner Waived Her 5th Amendment Rights

 

 

 

Published on Apr 10, 2014

” Trey Gowdy asserts that Lois Lerner waived her fifth amendment rights when she made 17 factual assertions before refusing to answer any questions and should be subject to cross examination.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

IRS Gave House Oversight Democrats Info On Targeted Conservative Group

 

elijah-cummings

 

 

” The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) sent tax documents on a targeted conservative group to Democratic staff on the House Oversight Committee, newly released emails show, despite previous denials by ranking Oversight Democrat Elijah Cummings (D., Md.) that such contact had occurred.

  Emails released by the GOP-led Oversight Committee show Democratic staff requested information from the IRS’ tax-exempt division on True The Vote, a conservative group that monitors polling places for voter fraud.

  Republicans and conservative activists say the IRS tax-exempt division, led by former official Lois Lerner, targeted dozens of conservative groups because of their politics while ignoring similar progressive organizations.

  Cummings publicly requested information from True the Vote in October 2012 on its volunteer activities and training.

  Five days later, the IRS sent True the Vote a letter requesting the group provide the agency with copies of its volunteer registration forms and additional information on its volunteer activities.”

Read the whole thing 

Lerner Likely Waived The Fifth And Can Be Held In Contempt

 

 

 

” While Lois Lerner’s reassertion of the Fifth Amendment, as well as the confrontation between Committee Chairman Darrell Issa (R–Calif.) and Rep. Elijah Cummings (D–Md.), soaked up all of the media coverage of the  IRS scandal last week, one interesting news item did not get much attention: the revelation by Lerner’s attorney, William Taylor III, that Lerner had given “a lengthy interview to Justice Department prosecutors within the last six months.” Even more surprising was Taylor’s admission that Lerner gave DOJ her testimony without getting any immunity from prosecutors.

  If that is true, the former IRS official’s reassertion of the privilege against self-incrimination at the March 5 hearing of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform is problematic. While the prevailing rule in most federal courts is that a waiver of the Fifth Amendment privilege at one proceeding does not carry through to another proceeding, that is not the rule in the District of Columbia.

  In Ellis v. U.S. (1969), the D.C. Court of Appeals specifically refused to adopt that rule, saying it was “unsound.” As the court held, “once a witness has voluntarily spoken out, we do not see how his protected interest is jeopardized by testifying in a subsequent proceeding, provided he is not required to disclose matters of substance which are unknown to the Government.” Under those circumstances, the court held, a person can reassert the privilege only if there is a “real danger of further criminalization.”

  Ellis involved a defendant who voluntarily testified before a grand jury but then refused to testify at trial, asserting his Fifth Amendment privilege against self-incrimination. Similarly, if Lerner—without receiving a grant of immunity—voluntarily spoke to Justice Department prosecutors and/or FBI agents involved in investigating IRS targeting of conservative groups, she cannot now invoke the privilege to avoid answering congressional questions that would require her to give the same information she has already provided to criminal investigators.”

 

    This sounds like very good news for those of us that want to know the truth . Read more from  Hans von Spakovsky at Heritage

 Illustration by Gary Varvel

 

 

 

 

 

 

IRS Handing Over Lerner Documents To Ways And Means

 

 

 

 

 

” The Internal Revenue Service will give documents and emails from former IRS official Lois Lerner to the House Ways and Means Committee, House Republicans announced Friday. 

  The news was released in a statement from committee Chairman Dave Camp, a Michigan Republican, who said the IRS was finally handing over the documents he requested months ago, as his committee continues its investigation into the IRS’ targeting of conservative groups

” From the few Lerner documents we have received, we know that Washington, D.C., orchestrated the targeting of groups applying for tax-exempt status, surveillance of existing tax-exempt groups and formed the proposed 501(c)(4) rules designed to push conservative groups out of the public forum,” Camp said. 

” The remaining documents are key to determining the level of wrong doing and deception committed by this agency,” he added. “

Read on at Newsmax

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cummings Goes Ballistic At Lerner Hearing

 

 

“ Seeking the truth is the obligation of this committee,” Issa said before announcing that he had no expectation that Lerner would answer his questions and adjourning the hearing.

  Lerner invoked the Fifth Amendment on each question Issa asked about the agency’s targeting of conservative groups. The hearing lasted approximately fifteen minutes before Issa released Lerner.

  Issa did not choose to hold Lerner in contempt of Congress on the floor of the hearing. It is unclear at this time if he will choose to pursue contempt charges.”

Issa On IRS Probe: Emails Prove Lerner Will Waive Immunity, Talk

 

 

 

” Emails reportedly have “set the record straight,” backing up Rep. Darrell Issa’s assertion that beleaguered former IRS official Lois Lerner will finally answer questions before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee about the agency’s targeting of conservative political groups. 

  The Hill reported that emails between committee staff and an attorney for the retired head of the agency’s tax-exempt division were released Monday to prove Issa’s statements were correct about her planned testimony — without immunity. 

  The California Republican lawmaker is yanking Lerner back before his committee because she previously refused to talk about the IRS’ controversial targeting, invoking her Fifth Amendment rights.

  Issa told “Fox New Sunday” that Lerner, through her attorney, had agreed to waive the Fifth and talk. She originally had sought immunity in exchange for the testimony. “

Perhaps we will finally hear the truth . Read more .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cleta Mitchell To Congress: DOJ IRS Investigation Is A Sham, Non-Existent”

 

 

Published on Feb 6, 2014

” Cleta Mitchell told Congress today the IRS is still targeting conservative groups. Mitchell also said the “ongoing” DOJ investigation is a complete sham.

” I want to make three primary points here. First, the IRS scandal is real. It’s not pretend, it’s real. Number two, the IRS scandal is not just a bunch of bone-headed bureaucrats in some remote office contrary to what the President of the United States told the American People on Sunday. And, number 3, the IRS scandal is not over. It is continuing to this day. And, the Department of Justice Investigation is a sham. It is a nonexistent investigation.” “

 

HT/The Right Scoop

 

 

 

 

 

 

IRS Off The Hook: No Criminal Charges Over Tea Party Targeting

 

 

” The FBI is not planning to file criminal charges involving the Internal Revenue Service’s extra scrutiny of the Tea Party and other conservative groups, the Wall Street Journal reported on Monday, citing law enforcement officials.

  The newspaper quoted officials as saying that investigators probing the IRS actions, which unleashed a political furor in Washington, did not uncover the type of political bias or “enemy hunting” that would constitute a criminal violation. The evidence showed a mismanaged agency enforcing rules it did not understand on applications for tax exemptions, the Journal reported.

  The case is still under investigation, but criminal charges were unlikely unless unexpected evidence emerged, officials familiar with the probe told the paper.

  A Justice Department spokesman declined to comment when queried by Reuters.”

 

   The corruption of Federal law enforcement is complete . The time to make like Henry Bowman is nigh . The State looks out for it’s own interests and those interests do not coincide with the interests of those who pay the bills .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

IRS officials in Washington ordered special scrutiny: congressional investigation finds

” IRS employees have told congressional investigators that they were ordered by the agency’s Washington office to give extra scrutiny to tea party groups’ applications for tax-exempt status, according to excerpts from interviews with the employees that were released by House committee chairmen Wednesday.

Carter Hull, a tax law specialist with 48 years of experience at the IRS, told investigators that Lois Lerner, the former head of the Exempt Organizations division, demanded he send some of the reviews of tea party groups to the IRS chief counsel’s office in Washington. The chief counsel is one of two political appointees in the IRS.”

IRS Cases Were Referred To ‘Group 7822’

 

 

” The Internal Revenue Service diverted applications for tax-exempt status from tea party and like-minded organizations to a special track known as Group 7822 for special scrutiny, according to transcripts of an interview by congressional interrogators with a key IRS official.

The lengthy interview with John Shafer, a senior manager in the screening department of the IRS division in charge of tax-exempt designations, was shared with reporters by Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md.

Staffs from several congressional committees have been interviewing employees in the Cincinnati-based IRS office that handles applications for exempt organization status.

Cummings’ aim was to refute assertions by the chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., that the special scrutiny was part of a Washington-based conspiracy. Cummings, the top Democrat on the committee, said the transcript of five hours of interviews on June 9 “debunks conspiracy theories about how the IRS first started reviewing these cases.”

The IRS has acknowledged using inappropriate criteria to ensure that new political players were in fact educational groups performing a social welfare purpose as required by law. Republicans charge the groups were targeted and their applications delayed until after the 2012 elections.”

 

 

Illustration by Chris Weyant