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Lois Lerner Tag

FOX News' Chad Pergram tweeted some breaking developments late this afternoon regarding a new email dump from the ever-interesting Lois Lerner file.

The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee is set to hear testimony tonight from IRS Commissioner John Koskinen, in an evening hearing on the subject of Lois Lerner’s missing emails. [This hearing has concluded. Full video will be posted when available]. Some clips from the hearing can also be viewed below. Remainder of the original post follows clips.

Friday night, Ben Shapiro of Truth Revolt appeared on Megyn Kelly's FOX News program to discuss Lois Lerner's missing emails. Trey Sanchez writes at Truth Revolt:
Host Megyn Kelly began by discussing the IRS investigation into the lost emails of ex-IRS official Lois Lerner. Initially, Kelly stated, Democrats and Republicans were both equally outraged. But as time has gone by, Democrats have lost their outrage, reinforced by President Obama, who insists not one smidgen of corruption is involved. Kelly said it was like IRS employees were saying, "Whoops! We're sorry, we lost basically all of the evidence you need to prove your case against me."
Shapiro explained the role the media plays in the parade of Obama scandals:

IRS Commissioner John Koskinen is expected to testify in a hearing before the House Ways and Means Committee on Friday morning at 9:00am EST. According to a statement from the committee, the hearing will focus on the IRS’s recent statement about the production of emails of former IRS official Lois Lerner. You should be able to view the livestream of the hearing at the committee’s UStream channel. [Hearing in Recess -- here are some videos]

The plot seems to thicken every day now on the infamous "missing emails" from IRS manager Lois Lerner. So only did Lerner's emails disappear in an alleged "computer crash," but so did six other IRS officials at the center of the IRS targeting scandal. Now comes news that the IRS actually disposed of Lerner's hard drive making any data retrieval that more difficult.
Ex-IRS official Lois Lerner’s crashed hard drive has been recycled, making it likely the lost emails of the lightning rod in the tea party targeting controversy will never be found, according to multiple sources. “We’ve been informed that the hard drive has been thrown away,” Sen. Orrin Hatch of Utah, the top Republican on the Finance Committee, said in a brief hallway interview.
House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa issued a terse statement following the POLITICO report Wednesday night:

The IRS is unable to produce some of the emails of former agency official Lois Lerner due to a computer crash, according to a statement from the House Ways and Means Committee.
Today, Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp (R-MI) issued the following statement regarding the Internal Revenue Service informing the Committee that they have lost Lois Lerner emails from a period of January 2009 – April 2011.  Due to a supposed computer crash, the agency only has Lerner emails to and from other IRS employees during this time frame.  The IRS claims it cannot produce emails written only to or from Lerner and outside agencies or groups, such as the White House, Treasury, Department of Justice, FEC, or Democrat offices. “The fact that I am just learning about this, over a year into the investigation, is completely unacceptable and now calls into question the credibility of the IRS’s response to Congressional inquiries.  There needs to be an immediate investigation and forensic audit by Department of Justice as well as the Inspector General. “Just a short time ago, Commissioner Koskinen promised to produce all Lerner documents.  It appears now that was an empty promise.  Frankly, these are the critical years of the targeting of conservative groups that could explain who knew what when, and what, if any, coordination there was between agencies.  Instead, because of this loss of documents, we are conveniently left to believe that Lois Lerner acted alone.  This failure of the IRS requires the White House, which promised to get to the bottom of this, to do an Administration-wide search and production of any emails to or from Lois Lerner.  The Administration has repeatedly referred us back to the IRS for production of materials.  It is clear that is wholly insufficient when it comes to determining the full scope of the violation of taxpayer rights.”
Last month, the Ways and Means Committee indicated that the IRS had finally agreed to turn over all Lois Lerner emails to the Committee.  But according to Friday's statement, it appears there had not been any mention until now that some of the emails would not be able to be produced because of the supposed computer crash. Apparently, Lerner tried to have technicians reconstruct her hard drive at the time of the crash, the Wall Street Journal reported.

The IRS has agreed to turn over all Lois Lerner emails to the House Committee on Ways and Means, according to a statement posted on the committee's website Thursday. From the Ways and Means committee website: Today, Ways and Means Chairman Dave Camp (R-MI) announced that one...

House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp (R-MI) announced Friday that, after months of discussions, the IRS has agreed to turn over Lois Lerner emails and documents to the committee. More from The Hill:
The Internal Revenue Service has agreed to turn over emails and other documents from Lois Lerner, a core player in the agency’s targeting controversy, the House Ways and Means Committee said Friday. Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp (R-Mich.) threatened last month to subpoena those documents after criticizing the IRS for failing to comply with his request. “This is a significant step forward and will help us complete our investigation into the IRS’s targeting of conservative groups,” Camp said in a statement.
This news follows a House Oversight committee hearing earlier this week during which Lerner again invoked her Fifth Amendment rights against self-incrimination and did not answer any questions. In February, Camp sent a letter to the new IRS Commissioner, John Koskinen, in which he reiterated a request for documents, including all Lois Lerner emails starting from January 1, 2009. Some documents had previously been provided to the committee, but they were limited in scope, according to the letter.
It has been almost eight months since I wrote Acting Commissioner Werfel to request, among other things, all Lois Lerner e-mails starting from January 1, 2009. To date, the committee has received only those Lerner documents from this period that include one or more search terms and limited to the determinations process. Given emerging evidence of Lerner's central role in targeting not just through the determinations process, but also in the examinations, appeals and rulemaking processes, all Lerner documents during this time period are pertinent to the investigation.

The House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform has scheduled a hearing on IRS targeting for 9:30am ET today. Former IRS official Lois Lerner has been recalled to testify before the committee; she is expected to appear, but after much confusion over the last few days, it's unclear whether or not Lerner will answer any questions. Update:  Hearing over, Lerner pleaded the 5th to all questions: [caption id="attachment_80340" align="alignnone" width="510"](Lois Lerner Pleads 5th House Hearing 3-5-2014) (Lois Lerner Pleads 5th House Hearing 3-5-2014)[/caption] Issa showed an email from Lerner in 2011 demonstrating hostility to the Tea Party and asked her about it, but she refused to answer questions about it: [caption id="attachment_80338" align="alignnone" width="575"](Lois Lerner Exhibit House Hearing 3-5-2014) (Lois Lerner Exhibit House Hearing 3-5-2014)[/caption] Lerner left the hearing without answering a single quesion:

An attorney for Lois Lerner says the former Internal Revenue Service official still intends to continue to assert her Fifth Amendment rights before the House Oversight committee, despite earlier claims from a top GOP lawmaker Sunday that she would testify this week. Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.),...

At this point it's tempting to regard the IRS as not-so-secret agents of the Obama administration and the Democrats. This is not paranoia. As Ed Rogers wrote in the WaPo, it is fact:
Encouraged by the lack of a public backlash, an uninquisitive press, cover from the White House and an eager-to-please bureaucracy, the Democrats are boldly counting on the IRS to be their political and policy enforcer.This statement isn’t an overreach by the “vast right-wing conspiracy” or a phony crisis created by hecklers (like me) on the right — it goes back to the early stages of President Obama’s reelection campaign.
Rogers goes on to list some of the more egregious examples of what has occurred and how the administration has been emboldened by the fact that so far there have been few negative consequences to them for their actions. The hue and cry that might have been expected - and to a certain extent came at first, when some of the revelations about Tea Party harassment were revealed - has been muted and blunted. So now the excesses are being further and more openly institutionalized:

The House Oversight Committee is scheduled to hold a hearing today at 11:00am ET on "The IRS’ Systematic Delay and Scrutiny of Tea Party Applications." (Livestream also at the bottom of this post). FOX News' Carl Cameron reported Wednesday evening on the O'Reilly Factor that major...