Republicans seek to establish paranoid ‘culture of cover-ups’ at IRS hearing
blares the headline of allvoices.
During a heated grilling on Capitol Hill by congressional lawmakers, resigned IRS Commissioner Steve Miller gave his best effort to describe what happened at the Cincinnati office by examiners, who were accused of “targeting” conservative groups for extra scrutiny on tax-exempt applications.
It was not nefarious activity meant to be politically targeted, said Miller. Apparently, it was a shortcut system designed to handle the flood of applications for 501(c)(4) status that doubled after Citizens United was allowed by the Supreme Court to deluge political campaigns with secretly donated corporate cash.
Miller, who testified Friday, along with Russell George, the Treasury inspector general, was repeatedly hammered by Republicans to admit that “targeting” was done, but he explained it was a way for 150 overworked employees to be “more efficient in their workload selection” to deal with 70,000 applications. Miller claimed the method was a foolish mistake, but not an “act of partisanship.” In addition, Bloomberg reported that some progressive groups went through added scrutiny as well.
However, according to a report in The Hill, David Camp (R-Mich.), Chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, didn’t accept Miller’s explanation and essentially called him a liar.
“We were repeatedly told no such targeting was happening [since 2012]” Camp said. “That isn’t being misleading – that is lying.”
Snide Republicans paint mistakes as another cover-up
spits an Examiner article:
Political analysts said that Republicans appeared to have coordinated their questions in the caustic tone and attitude of a hardcore interrogation, demanding that Miller pinpoint his answers, without allowing him to broaden his explanation, often cutting him off midsentence. Some questions were clearly looking for ties to the president and the White House, particularly around the election, which Miller adamantly denied.
Critics describe the debacle over IRS mistakes, the Benghazi attacks and the confiscation of AP records as a gleeful opportunity for conservatives to advance their dark conspiracy scandal-machine, while using words like “impeachment” and “government takeover” to further promote mistrust of the Obama administration.
Could the IRS abuse medical records? No chance, says Miller:
Nonetheless, Republican effort reported by the Daily Caller by Sen. Michele Bachmann, Rand Paul and other ultra-radical lawmakers to link the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) to planned abuse and future privacy violations by the IRS was debunked effectively in Friday’s hearing by Sen. Jim McDermott (D-Wash.).
McDermott asked Miller if the IRS would have the ability to access medical records of citizens unable to pay for health care in some kind of “fascist government takeover by the IRS,” which was a claim conjured up by the right to manufacture fear against the law. Miller’s answer was, “No, sir.”
democrats swear that the IRS won’t be able to abuse your medical records.
Beg your pardon.
A healthcare provider has sued the Internal Revenue Service and 15 of its agents, charging they wrongfully seized 60 million medical records from 10 million Americans.
The name of the provider is not yet known, United Press International said. But Courthouse News Service said the suit claims the agency violated the Fourth Amendment in 2011, when agents executed a search warrant for financial data on one employee – and that led to the seizure of information on 10 million, including state judges.
The search warrant did not specify that the IRS could take medical information, UPI said. And information technology officials warned the IRS about the potential to violate medical privacy laws before agents executed the warrant, the complaint said, as reported by UPI.
“Despite knowing that these medical records were not within the scope of the warrant, defendants threatened to ‘rip’ the servers containing the medical data out of the building if IT personnel would not voluntarily hand them over,” the complaint states, UPI reported.
The suit also says IRS agents seized workers’ phones and telephone data – more violations of the warrant, UPI reported.
The complaint alleges the IRS was “invasive and unlawful” and stole access to intimate medical records that included patients’ treatment plans and therapies, UPI said.
democrats feigned indignation that Republicans have identified this scandal for what it is- an effort to affect the 2012 election but the fact is that the IRS has been leaking confidential information on conservatives like a hull plate on the Titanic.
Camp began the hearing by setting the stakes. The problem, he said, wasn’t the IRS’ use of terms like “Tea Party” and “Patriot” to filter which groups seeking tax-exempt status should receive additional scrutiny. The problem, instead, is that the IRS is “too large” and “too obstrusive.” The tax system, he continued, “is rotten at the core, and it must be ripped out so we can start fresh.” The chairman justified that claim by explaining that his goal was to examine five different aspects of the IRS’ behavior. The Tea Party scrutiny was foremost, but there were other incidents: a White House official discussing the tax status of a company, harassment of donors to conservative groups, the Huffington Post accessing a donor list to the National Organization for Marriage, and a leak of applications for tax-exempt status to ProPublica.
democrats mostly seem bothered that they have been caught:
Rep. Sander Levin, the ranking Democrat, echoed Camp’s concerns — with a caveat. The IRS “completely failed the American people,” he agreed, but “if this hearing becomes essentially a bootstrap to continue the campaign of 2012 and to prepare for 2014, we will be making a very serious mistake and not meeting our obligation to the American people.” After Levin, Treasury’s Inspector General for Tax Adminstration J. Russell George (left, above) quickly walked through his office’s findings on the scrutiny of Tea Party (and other group) applicants.
The Obama administration knew about the IRS activity a year ago:
In no uncertain terms and with no hedging, The New York Times reports that the Obama administration was aware of the fact that the IRS was targeting Tea Party groups as far back as June of 2012. The Treasury Department’s Inspector General confirmed that he told senior Treasury officials in June of 2012, a full five months before Election Day:
The Treasury Department’s inspector general told senior Treasury officials in June 2012 he was investigating the Internal Revenue Service’s screening of politically active organizations seeking tax exemptions, disclosing for the first time on Friday that Obama administration officials were aware of the matter during the presidential campaign year.
We still don’t know for sure what the President knew or when he knew it, but this does confirm that the administration was aware of the fact that Obama’s political enemies were under fire by the IRS and covered that fact up during an election year.
As Lisa Meyers of NBC News told “Morning Joe” today, “Imagine if we — if you can — what would have happened if this fact came out in September 2012, in the middle of a presidential election? The terrain would have looked very different.”
They sat on it- because an election was coming up.
And an IRS employee in Cincinatti sheds even more light on this IRS scandal:
As could be expected, the folks in the determinations unit on Main Street have had trouble concentrating this week. Number crunchers, whose work is nonpolitical, don’t necessarily enjoy the spotlight, especially when the media and the public assume they’re engaged in partisan villainy.
“We’re not political,’’ said one determinations staffer in khakis as he left work late Tuesday afternoon. “We people on the local level are doing what we are supposed to do. . . . That’s why there are so many people here who are flustered. Everything comes from the top. We don’t have any authority to make those decisions without someone signing off on them. There has to be a directive.”
And we learned from where Barack Obama learns of these scandals:
The IRS CAN access your medical records.
The IRS CAN abuse your medical records.
They already have.
Dishonesty has become the hallmark of this regime. Don’t fall for their three big lies.