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Comments about ‘Former IRS chief to Congress: Can't say how targeting of conservative groups happened’

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Published: Tuesday, May 21 2013 4:09 p.m. MDT

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Ralph
Salt Lake City, UT

" "Mr. Miller, that's a lie by omission," said Sen. Orrin Hatch of Utah,..."

And if anybody knows anything about lying by omission, it's our esteemed Senator from Utah.

BTW, whatever happened to that Benghazi thing?

Say No to BO
Mapleton, UT

I only wish someone in these testimonies would tell Senator Baucus that they were only doing what he suggested in 2010, scrutinizing 501(c)(4) organizations.
The hypocrisy in Washington knows no bounds.

1conservative
WEST VALLEY CITY, UT

Since the IRS will most likely stonewall any/all questions, I'll speculate.

This Presidential administration has cultivated a culture of "end justifies the means". They started with the passage of Obamacare. Remember the "cornhusker kickback", or the "louisiana purchase"? How about "fast and furious" which, most of us believe, was really used to try to justify all those nasty looking AR15's being BANNED because they were winding up in the hands of Mexican drug cartels. Fortunately there was a whistleblower, (who, BTW, is receiving retribution for his attempts at good citizenship skills).

Why WOULDN'T IRS agents want to jump on the bandwagon to promote the Obama agenda? After all, they still received 90 million in bonuses, even while the rest of the nation was switching to food stamps and unemployment.

They, most probably, didn't think anyone would ever catch them anyway. Who DARES to question the IRS? Not me.

Its doubtful ANY IRS employees will receive much of anything besides maybe an admnistrative "slap on the wrist".

Does anyone REALLY believe Holders justice dept. would ever prosecute "one of the team"?

The Rock
Federal Way, WA

It is time to eliminate the 5ht Amendment defense for public officials with regards to corruption. They should be forced to testify against themselves with a lie detector attached.

Bill Clinton couldn't remember anything under oath but a wrote a 900 page book. Not bad for a guy who can't remember nothin.

The 5th Amendment is there to protect the people from a tyrannical government. A tyrannical government now hides behind it from the people. We require folks in the CIA and FBI and other jobs where national security is at stake to testify with a lie detector attached. Certainly the Presidency is even more sensitive.

We also need two attorneys general. One that has to answer to the President and another to answer to the party out of power. These clowns would never be so brazen if they knew that they could not stop investigations. The deterrent factor alone would make it worth it.

Riverton Cougar
Riverton, UT

So, either these people are lying to us and they knew about it. The appropriate response would be to fire them all.

Or else, they are telling the truth and they don't know a thing. In that case, they are just so ignorant and incompetent that we would be wise to question why they are in the positions they are in. The appropriate response would be to fire them all.

In either case, why are these guys still in office?

Apparently they did know something, which explains why any firing hasn't been done.

Truthseeker
SLO, CA

"For more than a year, from 2011 through the 2012 election, members of Congress repeatedly asked Shulman about complaints from tea party groups that they were being harassed by the IRS."

Russell George, the Inspector General, sent a letter to R-Rep. Darrell Issa, Chairman of the Committee on Oversight and Reform on July 2012 that they were looking into the matter and conducting an investigation. If Republicans didn't know an investigation was underway, perhaps they should call Darrell Issa to testify why he didn't inform them.

Secondly, until the investigation was completed nobody should testify that Conservative groups were unfairly targeted should they? Facts needed to be gathered and examined before conclusions are reached. The Republicans make conclusions, and then selectively pick the facts to support their conclusions.

Thirdly, this area of the tax code is fraught with problems. The statute says that an organization is operated EXCLUSIVELY for the promotion of social welfare as opposed to political activities. The Treasury Dept. needs to clarify what "exclusive" means and what types of activities promote social welfare as opposed to political activity. "Tea Party" is well recognized as a political movement, while the Sierra Club is recognized for environmental concerns.

Tolstoy
salt lake, UT

@riverton coug

So what part of FORMER irs chief is throwing you off?

If you are referring to Obama you show me any CEO of any company even coming close to the size of the federal government that knows what all the workers in every office across their company is doing and I will show you someone that is diluting themself.

Red Headed Stranger
Billy Bobs, TX

Rank Hypocrisy

Back in 2003 when a couple of soldiers just above the rank of private took inappropriate pictures of Iraqi prisoners the international and Washington press HOWLED and wrung their hands that it seemed Bush almost demanded a direct live video feed of the abuse to the White House.

Now, ten years after, when a government agency repeatedly audits law-abiding citizens who are correctly exercising their first amendment right to criticize the government, No one did it. Give guns to Drug Lords? No one did it. Monitor reporters' phone calls? No one did it. Rescue an Ambassador? Can't do it. $6 Trillion in new debt? Not him. Barry just heard about it on the news like everyone else.

Remember, Barry is only responsible for the positive actions of Seal Team Six.

Is it any wonder why we no longer trust a "free and independent" press?

peter
Alpine, UT

To Tolstoy--true point. But what CEO wouldn't investigate any misconduct/inappropriate behavior by any of his employees, then take proper action to hold his employees accountable for such misbehavior. Only in big, corrupt government. And that's part of the whole problem, our federal government is too big.

Riverton Cougar
Riverton, UT

"So what part of FORMER irs chief is throwing you off?"

Someone resigning a few weeks before they intended on leaving is one thing. Being fired is another. Miller wasn't fired. Ask anyone who has been fired, and they will tell you that this is not being fired.

Also, who else was fired? Apparently since only Miller was "fired", only Miller was responsible. Is that the case?

Peter has it right. These CEOs, in a sense, seem to be so incompetent as to not take any action to prevent these things from happening again. They just "fire" one guy who was going to leave in a few weeks anyway and call it good. Any CEO would get fired for not dealing with a scandal like that, especially for a company that is even close to the size of the federal government.

Truthseeker
SLO, CA

Re:peter, RedHeaded

Benghazi---Accountability Review Board, headed by Ambassador Thomas Pickering with Admiral Mike Mullen and 3 others to determine:

"whether the attacks were security related; whether security systems and procedures were adequate and implemented properly; the impact of intelligence and information availability; whether any other facts or circumstances in these cases may be relevant to appropriate security management of U.S. missions worldwide; and, finally, whether any U.S. government employee or contractor, as defined by the Act, breached her or his duty."

The criminal investigation of the September 11-12, 2012, Benghazi attacks, for which the statutory responsibility rests with the F.B.I.

IRS investigation initiated by the Treasury Inspector General.

Fast and Furious--Investigated by DOJ Inspector General, with multiple people fired, retired or reassigned.

To name a few...

It is evident to the majority of Americans that Republican's priority is to smear Obama (and Clinton), to shut down and oppose any and all legislative activity passed/proposed by Democrats and signed by Obama. "Fact-finding" is merely the label Republicans apply to conceal their ultimate goal.

JWB
Kaysville, UT

It is real convenient that the ex-Commissioner, a Republican appointee, didn't know anything about this program during his last 2-3 years of his tenure. If he was that incompetent, then the President is happy to have a Republican to blame. If this Commissioner didn't know due to the compartmentalization of the program and clandestine as it appears it was, that was to keep the commissioner unaware of that program. It has happened before where the lower level employees would not be whistleblowers as there is retribution or the threat of retribution from those that were over those employees. Or were the employees complicit with the administration's efforts to subvert the system, such as a mock or ad-hoc configuration control board for the information systems management of those records. With the upcoming move to link the IRS with comprehensive healthcare would have required the whole computer process configuration board work on that changeover for the past 3 years, the same time as this program was in force. Does that mean the healthcare program and the conservative information process were intermingled into the same program to mask the existence of the right wing gathering process?

Benghazi stalling?

Happy Valley Heretic
Orem, UT

peter
Alpine, UT
To Tolstoy--true point. But what CEO wouldn't investigate any misconduct/inappropriate behavior by any of his employees, then take proper action to hold his employees accountable for such misbehavior.

That's what happend so....?

Hemlock
Salt Lake City, UT

"My Administration is committed to creating an unprecedented level of openness in Government. We will work together to ensure the public trust and establish a system of transparency, public participation, and collaboration. Openness will strengthen our democracy and promote efficiency and effectiveness in Government."

Barak Obama

Unbelievable, believable, predictable.

the truth
Holladay, UT

The act or law that creates 501(c)(4) is highly unconstitutional,

It seriously violates 1st amendment right.

"Congress shall not abridge..."

The act or law should be abolished, they have never ever tried to try a violation in court.

This assault on the freedoms and rights of Conservative groups is abhorrent and a grotesque and tyrannical violation of the powers of government.

It is so wide spread and coordinated is is clearly came from high up.

and it all started immediately after a meeting Obama had with a top IRS official nearly 3 years ago.

Obama and his administration is most certainly involved if they did not dictate this action.

Yes, government tyranny is alive and well despite the denials of the left.

Truthseeker
SLO, CA

IRS hearings:

MENENDEZ: Inspector General, did Chairman Issa send a letter on August 3rd of 2012 to all the inspector generals reminding them that under the Inspector Generals Act, it requires IGs to report particularly flagrant problems to Congress through the agency head within seven days, via what has been known as the seven-day letter? Did you receive that letter? And, if so, did you respond to inform Chairman Isaa of your investigation into the IRS?
GEORGE: Senator, we did receive the letter, and Chairman Issa's committee was the first to actually contact us regarding this matter. And so through the course of engaging the review, on occasion we have had communications with his staff.

MENENDEZ: In 2012?

GEORGE: And since then, yes.

(Menendez is a Senator from NJ, George is the Inspector General of the Treasury who conducted the investigation into IRS practices).

A1994
Centerville, UT

@Ralph

"BTW, whatever happened to that Benghazi thing?"

It's still brewing. I've heard some speculation that this IRS thing was leaked to draw some attention away from Benghazi. I don't think it worked. There are more whistle blowers coming to testify before Congress.

It looks like the Benghazi thing is going to end up being a huge deal for Hillary Clinton AND Barak Obama. Someone issued a 'stand down' order to the military and let 4 Americans die. That's not something that is going to go away.

Mike Richards
South Jordan, Utah

The beauty of Obama's administration is that nobody is ever responsible for anything. They're just a bunch of kindergarten kids our for a walk. They look, but they don't see. They see, but they don't understand.

How about replacing everyone in that administration with adults who know how to accept responsibility?

This last round of atrocities has shown that Obama's administration is the first and foremost enemy to the freedom of America's citizens and of her press. But nobody in Washington has a clue about what is going on. How wonderful!

Truthseeker
SLO, CA

J. Russell George, a Treasury Department inspector general, testified Tuesday to the Senate Finance Committee that his department was in touch with Issa's office several times in 2012 and this year regarding its IRS investigation.

Here's a transcript of the exchange between George and Sen. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.), a member of the committee:

MENENDEZ: Inspector General, did Chairman Issa send a letter on August 3rd of 2012 to all the inspector generals reminding them that under the Inspector Generals Act, it requires IGs to report particularly flagrant problems to Congress through the agency head within seven days, via what has been known as the seven-day letter? Did you receive that letter? And, if so, did you respond to inform Chairman Isaa of your investigation into the IRS?
GEORGE: Senator, we did receive the letter, and Chairman Issa's committee was the first to actually contact us regarding this matter. And so through the course of engaging the review, on occasion we have had communications with his staff.

MENENDEZ: In 2012?

GEORGE: And since then, yes.

m.g. scott
clearfield, UT

Truthseeker

You might not remember it, but it was the Reagan White House that broke the Iran/Contra scandle. That did not stop the Congress from going full tilt investigation. Sometimes when an administration is going to be caught, they will come out first to try to lessen the impact. That is clearly what is happening here. It does not in any way, nor should it, deter Congress from looking into all of this stuff. Obama and his people don't deserve any more cover than Clinton or Reagan got, which was none.

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