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IRS planted question at ABA mtg disclosing targeting of conservatives

IRS planted question at ABA mtg disclosing targeting of conservatives

Nothing says “trust the IRS” quite like the IRS planting questions at Bar Association meetings

When Lois Lerner was asked a question at an American Bar Association about complaints regarding treatment of conservative groups, and Lerner made the admission and apology, TPM noted IRS Official’s Admission Baffled Audience At Tax Panel:

The fateful question came from a tax lawyer, in a room filled with dozens of them. It came at the end of a Friday morning panel, on the second day of the American Bar Association tax section’s big annual meeting at the Grand Hyatt hotel in Washington D.C. The moderator had announced that it would be the panel’s last question.

“Lois, a few months ago there were some concerns about the IRS’s review of 501(c)(4) organizations, of applications from tea party organizations,” Celia Roady, a veteran tax lawyer, asked Lois Lerner, head of the IRS’ tax-exempt organizations division, a few minutes after Lerner finished giving prepared remarks. “I was just wondering if you could provide an update.”

The name of the panel was “News From The IRS And Treasury.” But few, if any, of those present could have anticipated the kind of news Lerner would make with her response to Roady’s question.

Lerner began by describing the increase in 501(c)(4) applications the IRS received between 2010 and 2012. IRS employees in Cincinnati, Lerner said, had reacted by centralizing the applications for efficiency and consistency, something the IRS did “whenever we see an uptick in a new kind of application or something we haven’t seen before.” But in this case, Lerner said, the centralization had not been carried out properly.

“Instead of referring to the cases as advocacy cases, they actually used case names on this list,” Lerner said, according to a transcript of the meeting. “They used names like Tea Party or Patriots and they selected cases simply because the applications had those names in the title. That was wrong, that was absolutely incorrect, insensitive, and inappropriate — that’s not how we go about selecting cases for further review.”

Why the sudden admission?  Just coincidence, or an attempt by the IRS to get ahead of the pending release of the Inspector General Report? There was a strong suspicion that the question was planted based on the identity of the questioner.

Now we know.  At the hearings this morning, Acting IRS Commissioner Steven Miller admitted Lerner knew about the question in advance, and that it was planned by the IRS  (transcript and video will be added when available).

Miller testified that the IRS intended to tell Congress at same time, but admitted that the only thing the IRS did in that regard was to inquire as to Congress’s calendar:

Miller further testified “it might have been Lois Lerner” who contacted Celia Rhoady to ask the question at ABA meeting:

UPDATE: A reader emails:

Four questions I hope you suggest representatives raise about Celia Roady:

1. When did Celia Roady find out about this?

2. Who told Celia Roady?

3. Did the ABA moderator, who announced this was the last question, also know? What if Celia Roady had not been called on? She apparently waited until the end to ask…quite a coincidence

4. Did Celia Roady use this knowledge to help any clients? She would had the inside information that the IRS was going to be taking major heat and face a ‘distraction’ after this news became public.

New postAll the President’s Concealers tainted the 2012 election


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Kinda makes you wonder what the administration was trying to hide with this little “Squirrel!” that everybody ran after….

What are they trying to sneak through, hoping we won’t notice it?

(Yeah, I’m cynical – it’s hard not to be with this crew in charge)

I don’t understand why all the Democrats are outraged since they don’t think anyone at the IRS did anything wrong.

Wow … watching this now reminds me of watching the Watergate hearings back in my Cornell days. The IGA on College Ave had Bud 6-packs on sale for 99-cents all summer long!

I wish the Pubbies would be more aggressive in their questioning, and they would push back on the IRS BS answers.

“You can trust us; we’re not like the others. We’re from the government.”

Midwest Rhino | May 17, 2013 at 12:35 pm

ianal … beyond the sleaziness, is this a sort of obstruction of justice … interference in an ongoing investigation?

It was a coordinated misdirection, to preempt the soon to be released IG report. This of course preps the (usual suspects) “co-conspirators” aka “media” on the talking points for when the news comes out.

This is the same coordinated “talking point/news cycle” strategy used with Benghazi. Somehow non-profit Media Matters will be involved, to bring this propaganda machine full circle.

    Midwest Rhino in reply to Midwest Rhino. | May 17, 2013 at 2:37 pm

    oh .. and now Megyn Kelly reporting that AP lines were tapped NOT for endangering America … (they gave them five days, and got the “all clear”)

    BUT .. the president then wanted another day, so Team Obama could get out in front of the news cycle. So AP said no to that, and reported THEIR story. THEN they were punished by having 20 lines tapped and a bogus story told that they were endangering America.

    SAME pattern … they get the news cycle talking points … don’t contradict them or you will face the full force of the executive, including IRS, OSHA, Homeland Security, Eric Holder, etc.

To the lawyers: Don’t these acts fall under “18 USC § 241 – Conspiracy against rights”?

    Whether it does or not, Eric Holder will have to prosecute it. Think he will?

    You are living in a country with the same ‘enabling act’ (Obamacare) that lawyers in Nazi Germany (yes, the Nazis has lawyers working for them) engineered to facilitate Hitler’s complete control over Germany. The plan for Obama is the same.

Given the benefit of the doubt, assuming that the IRS hadn’t politicized this before in it’s processing of these applications (which I most certainly doubt), it most certainly politicized by not fessing up to scandal before election.
It was the IRS that politicized this scandal, even before the Republicans knew it was real.

To your reader’s email questions I would add a few more:
1. When is Steven Miller going to be disbarred? Celia Roady? Lois Lerner?

2. When will they be fired from their place of employment, where ever that is?

3. Who will ensure that none of them is ever employed by any government organization within the United States, at any level, in any capacity, ever again?

4. Who will ensure that their government pensions are denied?

4. When will audits of their personal federal and state tax returns be conducted?

Forget “accountability,” how about some real consequences for a change?

    Willy in reply to Owego. | May 17, 2013 at 7:36 pm

    I’m more interested in prison sentences. Only the threat of incarceration will get these people to squeal on who was really giving the orders.

Henry Hawkins | May 17, 2013 at 2:18 pm

It’s odd. Ever since this IRS thing started I keep seeing a little red dot when I look down at my chest. Coincidence? Anybody else seeing one?

Today’s hearing regarding the IRS affair was no different than the hearing that heard from Eric Holder. Nothing was accomplished as to identifying those who inspired less than stellar performance.

I see this as being lengthy process and the committee(s) involved need to have the staying power to uncover the truth which at least to me will lead straight to the White House.

I’m not a rookie with the observation of government shenanigans and in this case I smell a dozen or more smelly rats orchestrated by just one anointed guy…

[…] IRS planted question at ABA mtg disclosing targeting of conservatives ( […]

[…] We didn’t get to this yesterday, but this moment from IRS Commissioner Steve Miller in his testimony — this time to a Senate committee — should be noted.  Recall that when Miller testified last Friday to the House Ways and Means Committee, he was asked who at the IRS had the bright idea to set up a planted question at a Bar Association function for Lois Lerner as a strategy for admitting culpability for targeting conservatives, to which Miller expressed considerable fuzziness on the origin of this strategy (via Legal Insurrection): […]