Issa releases scathing report on Lerner

posted at 10:41 am on March 12, 2014 by Ed Morrissey

One of the enduring mysteries of the IRS scandal — at least if one listens to MSNBC and other media outlets who think of it as a “phony scandal” — is why Lois Lerner took the Fifth twice when called to testify to it. People invoke the Fifth Amendment to keep from incriminating themselves through their own testimony, which is a basic human right recognized by the Constitution. The use of it by a high-ranking government official when questioned by Congress about activities conducted during official duties does, however, strongly suggest that something illegal was going on, even if the invocation of the right itself cannot be used as evidence in trial. After all, if the scandal has no basis in fact and the IRS was just doing its job, then Lerner should have no problem testifying on how she performed her duties — information which Congress is entitled to demand.

House Oversight chair Darrell Issa issued a 141-page report yesterday which clarified why Lerner was so keen to avoid testifying. In what the Washington Post called a “scathing” account of her actions, the majority report from Oversight accuses Lerner of obstruction and misleading Congress, while attacking conservative groups and attempting to hide her activities from scrutiny:

Rep. Darrell Issa issued scathing conclusions Tuesday about Lois Lerner’s involvement in the Internal Revenue Service’s scrutiny of advocacy groups.

The California Republican and chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee released a 141-page report saying Lerner “led efforts to scrutinize conservative groups while working to maintain a veneer of objective enforcement.” He also accused her of obstructing the oversight committee’s investigation and misleading Congress. …

Issa’s report said Lerner was trying to undermine the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision.

“The Supreme Court dealt a huge blow, overturning a 100-year-old precedent that basically corporations couldn’t give directly to political campaigns, and everyone is up in arms because they don’t like it,” Lerner said at a Duke University forum in 2010. “The Federal Election Commission can’t do anything about it. They want the IRS to fix it.”

Issa said Lerner made “false or misleading statements” to the panel by denying in February 2012 that the IRS changed its screening criteria and by saying the agency’s review methods did not exceed its usual standards.

The IG’s audit found that Ler­ner ordered her division to alter the screening criteria in June 2011 because they focused too much on groups’ policy positions. It also determined that the agency overreached in seeking donor information from nonprofit groups.

Other IRS officials told the panel they could not remember such previous donor requests.

The report itself pulls no punches about Lerner’s activities:

When Congress asked Lerner about a shift in criteria, she flatly denied it along with allegations about disparate treatment.15 Even as targeting continued, Lerner engaged in a surreptitious discussion about an “off-plan” effort to restrict the right of existing 501(c)(4) applicants to participate in the political process through new regulations made outside established protocols for disclosing new regulatory action.16 E-mails obtained by the Committee show she and other seemingly like-minded IRS employees even discussed how, if an aggrieved Tea Party applicant were to file suit, the IRS might get the chance to showcase the scrutiny it had applied to conservative applicants.17 IRS officials seemed to envision a potential lawsuit as an expedient vehicle for bypassing federal laws that protect the anonymity of applicants denied tax exempt status.18 Lerner surmised that Tea Party groups would indeed opt for litigation because, in her mind, they were “itching for a Constitutional challenge.”19

Through e-mails, documents, and the testimony of other IRS officials, the Committee has learned a great deal about Lois Lerner’s role in the IRS targeting scandal since the Committee first issued a subpoena for her testimony. She was keenly aware of acute political pressure to crack down on conservative-leaning organizations. Not only did she seek to convey her agreement with this sentiment publicly, she went so far as to engage in a wholly inappropriate effort to circumvent federal prohibitions in order to publicize her efforts to crack down on a particular Tea Party applicant. She created unprecedented roadblocks for Tea Party organizations, worked surreptitiously to advance new Obama Administration regulations that curtail the activities of existing 501(c)(4) organizations – all the while attempting to maintain an appearance that her efforts did not appear, in her own words, “per se political.”

Lerner’s testimony remains critical to the Committee’s investigation. E-mails dated shortly before the public disclosure of the targeting scandal show Lerner engaging with higher ranking officials behind the scenes in an attempt to spin the imminent release of the TIGTA report.20 Documents and testimony provided by the IRS point to her as the instigator of the IRS’s efforts to crack down on 501(c)(4) organizations and the singularly most relevant official in the IRS targeting scandal. Her unwillingness to testify deprives Congress the opportunity to have her explain her conduct, hear her response to personal criticisms levied by her IRS coworkers, and provide vital context regarding the actions of other IRS officials. In a recent interview, President Obama broadly asserted that there is not even a “smidgeon of corruption” in the IRS targeting scandal.21

If this is true, Lois Lerner should be willing to return to Congress to testify about her actions. The public needs a full accounting of what occurred and who was involved. Through its investigation, the Committee seeks to ensure that government officials are never in a position to abuse the public trust by depriving Americans of their Constitutional right to participate in our democracy, regardless of their political beliefs. This is the only way to restore confidence in the IRS.

John McKinnon writes at the Wall Street Journal that this looks like a proposal for a contempt charge against Lerner.  It also notes that Lerner took a particular interest in a Democrat bête noire:

The report also appears aimed at building a case for seeking to hold Ms. Lerner in contempt of Congress. She has declined to answer congressional questions, citing her Fifth Amendment privilege against self-incrimination.

Newly disclosed emails show Ms. Lerner also took an interest in the application for tax-exempt status by Crossroads GPS, a big conservative player in the 2012 election that was co-founded by Karl Rove.

“Can you please send me a copy of the Crossroads [GPS] application? Lois wants Judy to take a look at it so she can summarize the issues for Lois,” says an IRS email from mid-2011 that is quoted in the report.

Paul Mirengoff wrote yesterday that the report shows that “[t]here can be little doubt that if Lerner were to answer Committee questions under oath, she would incriminate herself. And if she answered truthfully, she would also incriminate the administration she faithfully served.” Meanwhile, Scott Johnson points out a rather predictable gap in the coverage of the report. Be sure to catch up with Power Line’s better coverage.


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Jail for Lerner, please!

22044 on March 12, 2014 at 10:41 AM

Fellow Hot Air readers after the third Proclamation of “Fifth” means Ms. Learner should be enroute to the nearest AA meeting possible.

MSGTAS on March 12, 2014 at 10:46 AM

Rep. Darrell Issa issued scathing conclusions Tuesday about Lois Lerner’s involvement in the Internal Revenue Service’s scrutiny of advocacy groups

Now it’s getting serious. Next thing you know, he’ll be bringing out the “comfy chair”

Ditkaca on March 12, 2014 at 10:46 AM

I think there is an ambassadorship in line for Ms. Lerner.

Sven on March 12, 2014 at 10:46 AM

We need more than just reports.

Oil Can on March 12, 2014 at 10:48 AM

Jail for Lerner, please!

22044 on March 12, 2014 at 10:41 AM

And pull her pension.

Deafdog on March 12, 2014 at 10:48 AM

She belongs in jail but methinks she has a whole lot of dirt on more people higher up the food chain. She is going to make a deal.

major dad on March 12, 2014 at 10:48 AM

Keep your scathing report, I just want to see how she looks dressed in orange.

antipc on March 12, 2014 at 10:49 AM

Anything beyond a sternly worded letter?

blue13326 on March 12, 2014 at 10:51 AM

expect her to suddenly be rehired by admin and sent overseas like F&F people.

dmacleo on March 12, 2014 at 10:51 AM

Let’s remember where this started (trying to keep ahead of a scathing report). Lerner took a planted question at a teleconference where she, Lois Lerner, made the claim that eight rogue agents in Ohio “might have” misinterpreted some review criteria. Events have proven that Lerner was lying her ass off about he level of involvement and just where the targeting of conservative groups was coming from.

Contempt of Congress or not, this cupid stunt is contemptable.

Happy Nomad on March 12, 2014 at 10:53 AM

Issa is another incompetent Republican simply interested in self promotion. She should have been vigorously cited for contempt and prosecuted. Instead, like inept Obama, we have a “sternly worded memo”.
BFD

philw1776 on March 12, 2014 at 10:53 AM

Instead, like inept Obama, we have a “sternly worded memo”.
BFD

philw1776 on March 12, 2014 at 10:53 AM

Hey! He used the bold font this time!

Seriously, it is time to start charging these criminals.

Happy Nomad on March 12, 2014 at 10:54 AM

Issa releases scathing report on Lerner

…and now what?….more fuming?

KOOLAID2 on March 12, 2014 at 10:54 AM

I don’t understand this at all, Lerner felt that a court challenge by the Tea Party would be great but a Congressional inquiry is bad? She will never be prosecuted by an Obama DOJ.

Cindy Munford on March 12, 2014 at 10:54 AM

Indict her Issa…pretty simple really.

workingclass artist on March 12, 2014 at 10:56 AM

Sounds bossy.

Ben Hur on March 12, 2014 at 10:56 AM

But, but, Issa hurt the feelings of a black member on Congress, that trumps anything Lerner did, does it not? /s

redguy on March 12, 2014 at 10:57 AM

this is what Trey Gowdy meant when he said that his 16 years as a special prosecutor taught him how to get those that have plead the 5th to talk…so if Lololerner doesn’t want to end up in jail minus a pension she’ll spill her beans sooner rather than later. this will go at least all the way to obozo’s chief wh counsel (wasn’t that our gal anita dunn-iluvmao’s husband ?). time for bo’s people to line up their very own criminal defense attorneys.

gracie on March 12, 2014 at 10:57 AM

Indict her Issa…pretty simple really.

workingclass artist on March 12, 2014 at 10:56 AM

He can’t – the DOJ has to do that – Eric Holder is laughing his ass off……
and Obama is getting the pardon ready…..

redguy on March 12, 2014 at 10:58 AM

Feckless.

Issa, that is.

steebo77 on March 12, 2014 at 10:58 AM

Is anyone willing to entertain the possibility that Issa did this in an attempt to provoke a reaction from Lerner and her handlers? Or perhaps a reaction from our notoriously thin-skinned president?

Sure, it’s no more than a sternly worded letter; but someone in the administration will feel compelled to answer it, and in so doing may end up showing their hand.

CurtZHP on March 12, 2014 at 11:01 AM

Jail for Lerner, please!

22044 on March 12, 2014 at 10:41 AM

And pull her pension.

Deafdog on March 12, 2014 at 10:48 AM

Yes, pull pension and give jail time for every single person involved up and down the filthy chain of command.

Mark Boabaca on March 12, 2014 at 11:02 AM

obozo’s chief wh counsel (wasn’t that our gal anita dunn-iluvmao’s husband ?)

gracie on March 12, 2014 at 10:57 AM

Pete Rouse, also architect of the lawfare directed at Gov. Palin

steebo77 on March 12, 2014 at 11:02 AM

someone in the administration will feel compelled to answer it, and in so doing may end up showing their hand.

CurtZHP on March 12, 2014 at 11:01 AM

Why should they feel compelled? Who’s gonna compel them? Issa? The media? Oblahma?

steebo77 on March 12, 2014 at 11:03 AM

There has been mention in other reports that yet again, members of this administration used non Govt email addresses to avoid scrutiny.

Oh how I wish someone would get the log files from their servers and determine who else uses them in order to avoid scrutiny.

This is a huge smoking gun that someone should be investigating.

knewshound on March 12, 2014 at 11:04 AM

So is Rep. Cummings going throw himself on the floor and have a tantrum so the media will have something to cover?

Cindy Munford on March 12, 2014 at 11:05 AM

This report means nothing. This is going nowhere until Johnny Boehner forms a select committee to get to the bottom of this. Same goes for Fast & Furious & Benghazi. These three things alone, with a select committee, will lead to the Impeachment of Barack Hussain Obama mmm mmm mmm.

Issa’s committee doesn’t have the investigative powers that a select committee has.

So we all have to ask ourselves, why won’t Johnny Boehner open a select committee to get to the bottom of the IRS scandal, Fast & Furious and Benghazi???

Conservative4Ever on March 12, 2014 at 11:06 AM

Jail for Lerner, please!

22044 on March 12, 2014 at 10:41 AM

She belongs in a cage, for sure. But she is not the head of this rotten fish.

MJBrutus on March 12, 2014 at 11:06 AM

Scooter Libby served time in jail for having a different account of a conversation with left-wing, former congressional staffer Tim Russert than Russert himself did. W Bush refused to pardon Libby. Libby served time for nothing.

I want to hear what W thinks should happen to Lerner.

InterestedObserver on March 12, 2014 at 11:07 AM

Indict her Issa…pretty simple really.

workingclass artist on March 12, 2014 at 10:56 AM

He can’t – the DOJ has to do that – Eric Holder is laughing his ass off……
and Obama is getting the pardon ready…..

redguy on March 12, 2014 at 10:58 AM

Two words: special prosecutor.

Bitter Clinger on March 12, 2014 at 11:08 AM

Translation: Issa issues written diarrhea, amounts to sockful of nothing.

BrianJ on March 12, 2014 at 11:08 AM

Yeah, I’ll tell you what.

Those Scathing reports, harshly worded letters and the like, really
are the ticket to getting to the bottom of things…

ToddPA on March 12, 2014 at 11:10 AM

Scathing: witheringly scornful; severely critical.
synonyms:devastating, withering, blistering, extremely critical, searing, scorching, fierce, ferocious, savage, severe, stinging, biting, cutting, mordant, trenchant, virulent, caustic, vitriolic, scornful, sharp, bitter, acid, harsh, unsparing

———
I kind of doubt it.
And that’s it…a scathing report? The end?

albill on March 12, 2014 at 11:10 AM

He can’t – the DOJ has to do that – Eric Holder is laughing his ass off……
and Obama is getting the pardon ready…..

redguy on March 12, 2014 at 10:58 AM

he’s not laughing…in fact he’s directed his chief of civil rights division to talk to lololerner because the entire gang is worried about being implicated in what is clearly a federal criminal offense…they are all going to need attorneys.

he’s probably thinking right now about appointing a special prosecutor to investigate and not one that contributed to obozo’s campaign.

gracie on March 12, 2014 at 11:11 AM

After all, if the scandal has no basis in fact and the IRS was just doing its job, then Lerner should have no problem testifying on how she performed her duties — information which Congress is entitled to demand.
– Ed

Ed –
Whatever opinion you have of Lerner’s character, whatever theories you have about her actions – it’s wrong to assume that her taking the 5th means she’s ‘hiding’ something and/or has committed or participated in illegal activity. Issa is on a fishing expedition and he decided to make Lerner a target. Nobody for a minute thinks Lerner was Issa’s real target, so why not just offer her immunity? I think the reason for that is that his agenda wouldn’t be served by her testimony. He knows this. Issa’s record is one of hysterical drama and accusations – and zero evidence or determinations. Lerner is under assault by a hostile committee leader and it would be reckless for her attorneys to allow any course but pleading the 5th.
Her lawyers know she requires immunity to protect her from the trumped up charges she’d surely face following testimony.
Do you or anyone really think Lerner is so evil that immunity would be letting some serious criminal avoid punishment for their dastardly deeds? Even if one is to believe the wildest of accusations here – Lerner is the mastermind who deviously schemed to take down the Tea Party through tax exemption denials?
This is theater…silly theater. But by all means, grant Lerner immunity so we can get to the end of this boring mini-series.

verbaluce on March 12, 2014 at 11:11 AM

Who’s gonna compel them? Issa? The media? Oblahma?

steebo77 on March 12, 2014 at 11:03 AM

Their own outsized egos. Their elitist sense of entitlement.

CurtZHP on March 12, 2014 at 11:11 AM

Rep. Darrell Issa issued scathing conclusions Tuesday about Lois Lerner’s involvement in the Internal Revenue Service’s scrutiny of advocacy groups.

So… we’re done here, I guess. Adjourned.

bofh on March 12, 2014 at 11:12 AM

The leader sets the tone. Lerner is the self-righteous, extra-legal spawn of the self-righteous, extra-legal Obama. The fish rots from the head down. He punishes his enemies. She punishes his enemies.

LashRambo on March 12, 2014 at 11:12 AM

I agree about the pardon. Barry would do that without hesitation.

What she needs is a lengthy, lengthy trial and serious jailtime. She’s not going to flip without a ten-year sentence.

And this is all Holder.

budfox on March 12, 2014 at 11:12 AM

All I see is just words…no action.

We are begging for more abuse when they all get away with this…

Alinsky on March 12, 2014 at 11:13 AM

verbaluce on March 12, 2014 at 11:11 AM

nice try verbaloosie. lolo is a criminal who lied through her teeth. no turning back now. she should have been jailed for her activities years ago at the FEC.

gracie on March 12, 2014 at 11:14 AM

Boehner must have turned him down on the contempt of Congress charges…

d1carter on March 12, 2014 at 11:15 AM

antipc on March 12, 2014 at 10:49 AM

I would like to see this whole Administration in orange.

SweetSensationalist on March 12, 2014 at 11:16 AM

So we all have to ask ourselves, why won’t Johnny Boehner open a select committee to get to the bottom of the IRS scandal, Fast & Furious and Benghazi???

Conservative4Ever on March 12, 2014 at 11:06 AM

Because the CIA and/or the FBI has dirt on him. Simple as that. They are getting good at it. Heck they are even spying on Congress now in their own chambers. It worked to get Roberts to change his mind.

Johnnyreb on March 12, 2014 at 11:17 AM

Translation: Issa issues written diarrhea, amounts to sockful of nothing.

BrianJ on March 12, 2014 at 11:08 AM

Like all of your posts here at HA.

VegasRick on March 12, 2014 at 11:18 AM

Get back to me when the headline is “Issa orders Lerner arrested.”

Rational Thought on March 12, 2014 at 11:18 AM

Boehner must have turned him down on the contempt of Congress charges…

d1carter on March 12, 2014 at 11:15 AM

wrong conclusion….this letter is just the prelude to shake her out. if she doesn’t come forward to talk honestly about her activities, the hammer will drop and it’ll be 3 hots and a cot for lolo.

gracie on March 12, 2014 at 11:20 AM

Verbaluce, if the shoe were on the other foot, and this was a Democrat-lead committee investigating a Republican nominee, would you say the same thing? Come on.

Throat Wobbler Mangrove on March 12, 2014 at 11:22 AM

Like all of your posts here at HA.

VegasRick on March 12, 2014 at 11:18 AM

in latin our boy bj’s got loquorrhea (running off at the mouth, intractable i would say….

gracie on March 12, 2014 at 11:22 AM

Now can she do jail time?

sadatoni on March 12, 2014 at 11:22 AM

Oil Can on March 12, 2014 at 10:48 AM

This report references and cites Lerner’s own e-mails that prove Lerner was extremely bias toward Conservatives, considered them dangerous, and took steps to ensure they did not receive their tax exempt status, thereby preventing them from influencing the 2012 elections – the way they did in 2010. The evidence they have prove Lerner DID play a major role in the scandal and DID lie.

easyt65 on March 12, 2014 at 11:23 AM

Whatever opinion you have of Lerner’s character, whatever theories you have about her actions – it’s wrong to assume that her taking the 5th means she’s ‘hiding’ something and/or has committed or participated in illegal activity.

verbaloon on March 12, 2014 at 11:11 AM

OK, tell us in your own simple words why you think that she took the 5th, not just once, but twice.

Take your time.

Del Dolemonte on March 12, 2014 at 11:23 AM

Nominee is the wrong word. Let’s say a Republican-leaning IRS employee instead.

Throat Wobbler Mangrove on March 12, 2014 at 11:24 AM

Translation: Issa issues written diarrhea, amounts to sockful of nothing.

BrianJ on March 12, 2014 at 11:08 AM

OK, tell us in your own simple words why you think that she took the 5th, not just once, but twice.

Take your time.

Del Dolemonte on March 12, 2014 at 11:24 AM

Anyone know if Lois Lerner was scheduled to be on the Malaysia flight.
LOL.

WillNV on March 12, 2014 at 11:25 AM

Is there a statute of limitations on these crimes — IRS, Benghazi, Fast and Furious, et al? Can these be prosecuted once a Republican administration is in place? Not that they would do it, but just curious.

Kaffa on March 12, 2014 at 11:26 AM

Translation: Issa issues written diarrhea, amounts to sockful of nothing.

BrianJ on March 12, 2014 at 11:08 AM

…BJ knows!…he always has a mouthful!

KOOLAID2 on March 12, 2014 at 11:26 AM

verbaluce on March 12, 2014 at 11:11 AM

nice try verbaloosie. lolo is a criminal who lied through her teeth. no turning back now. she should have been jailed for her activities years ago at the FEC.

gracie on March 12, 2014 at 11:14 AM

Yours is as good an example of any that it’s just wild accusations with nothing to back any of it up.
But you get credit for saying as much in a few lines what Issa used 141 pages to accomplish.

verbaluce on March 12, 2014 at 11:26 AM

verbsoutofbalance,

Best adivse for you.
Your defending crime, your defendeing the Democrat party as it desends into an even worse crimial state. Getting elected to public office and haveing a 51% total of the voting public does not put you above the law and or normal good and decent behavior.

Clear it is even to a member of the cult of tax, spend and change the subject you see where this is all headed. Total destruction of your out of balance crime operation now run by the Chicago community heckler in chief. Way above his ability to preform so he attacks to distract from the lies and fraud.

Now you committ the act of being to lowly co-liar by pouring your little silly lies on top of the fire this mean sprited marxist arsonist started with his hate of U.S.A. and its citizens.

Be my guest, only you can stop your mindless quest.

APACHEWHOKNOWS on March 12, 2014 at 11:27 AM

There appear to be a lot of assumptions in this thread that if Issa had the stones, he personally or his committee could indict, convict, and sentence Lerner for life.

Neither Issa nor his committee have any of those powers. They are exercising precisely those powers that they do have. Unearthing the facts (to the extent that the Administration fails to bury them), exposing the culprits, and– releasing reports. The reports lay the groundwork, and form the legal basis, for resolutions of contempt, which are reported to the full House. The House votes to find Lerner in contempt of Congress. As the WSJ article cited above states:

The report also appears aimed at building a case for seeking to hold Ms. Lerner in contempt of Congress.

But without an adequate legal basis, or political cover, good luck getting Boehner to bring it to the floor, or for the resolution to carry.

It’s also a means of signaling Lerner’s counsel that this isn’t going away, and that maybe Lerner ought to be more forthcoming with testimony if she wants immunity, or to head off a House sentence to the Congressional jail or referral to a federal judge, where she can spend her pension defending herself in the courts for the rest of her life.

Like anything else in today’s legal world, the processes are agonizingly slow. But nothing happens outside the process. Unless you’re Barry.

de rigueur on March 12, 2014 at 11:28 AM

verbaluce on March 12, 2014 at 11:11 AM

I would be fine with Ms. Lerner being Issa’s target, she has a history. The American people should not be paying a six figure pension to an partisan insider in a government institution. She has a pattern, she did this at the FCC. This behavior must be stopped and her being in jail would be a great deterrent.

Cindy Munford on March 12, 2014 at 11:30 AM

de rigueur on March 12, 2014 at 11:28 AM

They will probably have to keep it alive three more years, Holder isn’t going to prosecute his own insider.

Cindy Munford on March 12, 2014 at 11:31 AM

it’s just wild accusations with nothing to back any of it up.

But you get credit for saying as much in a few lines what Issa used 141 pages to accomplish.

verbaloon on March 12, 2014 at 11:26 AM

Please cite some notable examples of innocent people who have taken the 5th, twice.

Take your time.

Del Dolemonte on March 12, 2014 at 11:32 AM

think now, come up with a good blame the CO2 type distraction for King Ohole, quick , quickkk…

APACHEWHOKNOWS on March 12, 2014 at 11:32 AM

Lerner has alread ADMITTED in front of the media that her division ‘inappropriately targeted’ conservative groups. She also apologized for it hapopening.

(As history proves, politicians and political-associated persons with something to hide never uses the term ‘illegal’ – it is always ‘inappropriate’. Treating one group differently than another based on political bias is ILLEGAL.)

Lerner’s e-mails, which Issa / the report cites exposes Lerner’s personal political bias, her hatred of the 1st Amendment, and how she shared the confidential tax information of several TEA Party groups with the FEC, a CLEAR violation of federal law (CRIME).

It is, therefore, incredible how Obama-zombies keep arguing how there is no proof of wrong-doing….despite ALL THE EVIDENCE to the contrary.

Put her boney @$$ in jail!

easyt65 on March 12, 2014 at 11:34 AM

Bush made he do it.

APACHEWHOKNOWS on March 12, 2014 at 11:34 AM

it’s just wild accusations with nothing to back any of it up.

verbaloon on March 12, 2014 at 11:26 AM

PS, the IRS were the first ones who admitted that they did the deed. Issa “accused” them of nothing.

F-

Del Dolemonte on March 12, 2014 at 11:34 AM

“The Supreme Court dealt a huge blow, overturning a 100-year-old precedent that basically corporations couldn’t give directly to political campaigns, and everyone is up in arms because they don’t like it,” Lerner said at a Duke University forum in 2010. “The Federal Election Commission can’t do anything about it. They want the IRS to fix it.”

Yeah, it would be interesting to hear her explanation of who “everyone” and “they” are…

I’m sure it wouldn’t include any folks who reside in the White (that’s racist isn’t it?) House.

climbnjump on March 12, 2014 at 11:35 AM

her

APACHEWHOKNOWS on March 12, 2014 at 11:35 AM

come on verbsoutofbalance you got your talking points down , shine your commie light for us so’s we know whats what.

APACHEWHOKNOWS on March 12, 2014 at 11:37 AM

Yours is as good an example of any that it’s just wild accusations with nothing to back any of it up.

verbaluce on March 12, 2014 at 11:26 AM

And your long winded denial of the facts complete with DNC talking points delivers zero proof of her innocence.

antipc on March 12, 2014 at 11:38 AM

Do you or anyone really think Lerner is so evil that immunity would be letting some serious criminal avoid punishment for their dastardly deeds? Even if one is to believe the wildest of accusations here – Lerner is the mastermind who deviously schemed to take down the Tea Party through tax exemption denials?
This is theater…silly theater. But by all means, grant Lerner immunity so we can get to the end of this boring mini-series.

verbaluce on March 12, 2014 at 11:11 AM

Well somebody finally alerted the trolls. Yes snowflake, I think Lerner is evil and deserves to go to prison for illegally interfereing with the civil rights of conservatives. How many groups were unable to engage in the same kind of activism enjoyed by the rat-eared wonder’s supporters thanks to Lerner and Obama?

This is not theater- which implies that the idea of the IRS targeting groups is all make believe and the facts have proven otherwise. You’d realize that if you were not as filthy and stupid a liar as your rat-eared boy king.

Happy Nomad on March 12, 2014 at 11:38 AM

As soon as she gets immunity she’ll say it started and ended with her and the higher ups will be protected. Just send her to the clink.

Deano1952 on March 12, 2014 at 11:39 AM

Yours is as good an example of any that it’s just wild accusations with nothing to back any of it up.
But you get credit for saying as much in a few lines what Issa used 141 pages to accomplish.

verbaluce on March 12, 2014 at 11:26 AM

You haven’t read the 141 pages, and you’re manifestly not an attorney, or you’d know that– as one attorney has put it:

There can be little doubt that if Lerner were to answer Committee questions under oath, she would incriminate herself. And if she answered truthfully, she would also incriminate the administration she faithfully served.

As for the committee’s “wildest accusations,” you are aware, aren’t you, that after having told the Committee that the targeting of conservative 501©(4) applicants were the actions of a few rogue Cincinnati office employees, IRS witnesses testified that

Lerner was extensively involved in handling the Tea Party cases—from directing the review process to receiving periodic status updates. Other IRS employees would later testify that the level of scrutiny Lerner ordered for the Tea Party cases was unprecedented.

(In other words, Lerner lied to the Committee. No wonder she doesn’t wish to testify about that earlier testimony.) Those are real IRS witnesses, by the way. As are Lerner’s emails:

Even as the targeting continued, Lerner engaged in a surreptitious discussion about an “off-plan” effort to restrict the right of existing 501(c)(4) applicants to participate in the political process through new regulations made outside established protocols for disclosing new regulatory action.

E-mails obtained by the Committee show she and other seemingly like-minded IRS employees even discussed how, if an aggrieved Tea Party applicant were to file suit, the IRS might get the chance to showcase the scrutiny it had applied to conservative applicants.

IRS officials seemed to envision a potential lawsuit as an expedient vehicle for bypassing federal laws that protect the anonymity of applicants denied tax exempt status. Lerner surmised that Tea Party groups would indeed opt for litigation because, in her mind, they were “itching for a Constitutional challenge.”

I’ll take the Committee’s evidence-based “wild accusations” over your wild and unsubstantiated protestations any day.

de rigueur on March 12, 2014 at 11:39 AM

Full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.

Exninja on March 12, 2014 at 11:40 AM

And it’s taken how long to get to this point? Everybody knows that the IRS/Lerner/Oba-mao are guilty as Hell.

ultracon on March 12, 2014 at 11:41 AM

Whatever opinion you have of Lerner’s character, whatever theories you have about her actions – it’s wrong to assume that her taking the 5th means she’s ‘hiding’ something and/or has committed or participated in illegal activity.

verbaloon on March 12, 2014 at 11:11 AM

OK, tell us in your own simple words why you think that she took the 5th, not just once, but twice.

Take your time.

Del Dolemonte on March 12, 2014 at 11:23 AM

I said just why in my comment.
She has no idea what charges she faces – only that Issa is gunning for her. She could reveal that she deleted emails, and regardless of the reason be charged with destroying evidence. She could reveal she took one too many sick days, and be charged with defrauding the government. I think what Ed, along with many, miss here is that the 5th isn’t to allow for citizens to hide their crimes – it’s to protect them from overzealous prosecution. And you can’t get a clearer illustration of that than this setting.

Also, no surprise to Issa or anyone that she invoked the 5th here.
She’d have to have Daffy Duck as a lawyer to not.

verbaluce on March 12, 2014 at 11:42 AM

de rigueur on March 12, 2014 at 11:28 AM

They will probably have to keep it alive three more years, Holder isn’t going to prosecute his own insider.

Cindy Munford on March 12, 2014 at 11:31 AM

No, he won’t. And there’s also the possibility that Obama will pardon her– which he has the power to do at any time before an indictment, during a trial, and after conviction.

However, the House doesn’t need Holder’s approval to throw her in the House pokey (admittedly, about as fearful as it sounds) nor to refer the case to the federal courts, where the House’s own attorneys can prosecute the case.

Worth doing if only as a warning to other rogue executive branchers that they can expect to spend a LOT of time and money defending themselves if they don’t wish to cooperate with the legislature.

de rigueur on March 12, 2014 at 11:46 AM

Ed –
Whatever opinion you have of Lerner’s character, whatever theories you have about her actions – it’s wrong to assume that her taking the 5th means she’s ‘hiding’ something and/or has committed or participated in illegal activity.

Both the Barack Obama Party and Barack Obama himself have declared that the only reason people take the Fifth is because they are automatically guilty.

You wanted to apply the rules; you can live by them.

Issa is on a fishing expedition and he decided to make Lerner a target. Nobody for a minute thinks Lerner was Issa’s real target, so why not just offer her immunity? I think the reason for that is that his agenda wouldn’t be served by her testimony. He knows this. Issa’s record is one of hysterical drama and accusations – and zero evidence or determinations.

Projection. Harry Reid screamed and screamed that Mitt Romney didn’t pay his taxes and insisted that it was Romney’s job to prove that he wasn’t guilty.

Own it, verbaluce. You wanted these rules; you get to live under them.

Lerner is under assault by a hostile committee leader and it would be reckless for her attorneys to allow any course but pleading the 5th.

Yep. Just like all investigations from the Democrat-controlled House and Senate are partisan and based on hostility toward Republicans.

Own it, verbaluce. You wanted these rules, you get to live under them.

Her lawyers know she requires immunity to protect her from the trumped up charges she’d surely face following testimony.
Do you or anyone really think Lerner is so evil that immunity would be letting some serious criminal avoid punishment for their dastardly deeds? Even if one is to believe the wildest of accusations here – Lerner is the mastermind who deviously schemed to take down the Tea Party through tax exemption denials?
This is theater…silly theater. But by all means, grant Lerner immunity so we can get to the end of this boring mini-series.

verbaluce on March 12, 2014 at 11:11 AM

And there we see verbaluce admitting that Democrats trump up charges against Republicans and that Democrats prosecute Republicans unfairly.

It’s all projection. Verbaluce is admitting that Democrats have bno morals and that any Congressional investigation by Democrats is nothing but partisan witch-hunting.

northdallasthirty on March 12, 2014 at 11:47 AM

Pres. Daffy Duck is busy signing Obama Care waivers does not have time to lawyer for Ms Lerner!!

APACHEWHOKNOWS on March 12, 2014 at 11:48 AM

Help

APACHEWHOKNOWS on March 12, 2014 at 11:49 AM

She has no idea what charges she faces – only that Issa is gunning for her.

verbaluce on March 12, 2014 at 11:42 AM

Hence, the Issa committee report. If the report becomes the legal basis for a committee finding of contempt against Lerner, and said finding is reported to the House as a resolution of contempt, and if said House approves the resolution, Lerner then is afforded the opportunity to answer the charges in front of the entire House. Heh.

Wonder if she’ll plead the Fifth?

de rigueur on March 12, 2014 at 11:49 AM

I said just why in my comment.
She has no idea what charges she faces – only that Issa is gunning for her. She could reveal that she deleted emails, and regardless of the reason be charged with destroying evidence. She could reveal she took one too many sick days, and be charged with defrauding the government. I think what Ed, along with many, miss here is that the 5th isn’t to allow for citizens to hide their crimes – it’s to protect them from overzealous prosecution. And you can’t get a clearer illustration of that than this setting.

verbaluce on March 12, 2014 at 11:42 AM

Nope.

Your Obama Party, your Barack Obama, and all of your Obama Party investigations have all stated over and over and over again that the ONLY reason anyone takes the Fifth is to cover up crimes.

Furthermore, you ADMIT that you don’t care if Lerner defrauds the government or illegally deletes email. You are a blind partisan who is desperately spinning to protect Lerner BECAUSE SHE IS AN OBAMA SUPPORTER. You are defending whatever she did and insist that she cannot be guilty under any circumstances.

What a sick and demented person you are. You expose why Lerner acted like she did — because she knows amoral Obama partisans like yourself believe you are exempt from the law because you voted for Obama.

northdallasthirty on March 12, 2014 at 11:50 AM

Also, no surprise to Issa or anyone that she invoked the 5th here.
She’d have to have Daffy Duck as a lawyer to not.

verbaluce on March 12, 2014 at 11:42 AM

Yea, govt. official invoking the 5th, it happens all the time.
You are an idiot.

VegasRick on March 12, 2014 at 11:53 AM

OK, tell us in your own simple words why you think that she took the 5th, not just once, but twice.

Take your time.

Del Dolemonte on March 12, 2014 at 11:23 AM

Further…

Had to look for this – saw the other day.
A good take and rebuttal to all those ‘why take the 5th if you’re innocent?’ quips –

Pardon me: if you accept the proposition that the government targets organizations for IRS scrutiny because of their political views, and you still say things like “why take the Fifth if you have nothing to hide”, then you’re either an idiot or a dishonest partisan hack.

verbaluce on March 12, 2014 at 11:55 AM

And pull her pension.

Deafdog on March 12, 2014 at 10:48 AM

this, and watch the rats jump ship

DanMan on March 12, 2014 at 11:56 AM

OK, tell us in your own simple words why you think that she took the 5th, not just once, but twice.

Take your time.

Del Dolemonte on March 12, 2014 at 11:23 AM

Further…

Had to look for this – saw the other day.
A good take and rebuttal to all those ‘why take the 5th if you’re innocent?’ quips –

Pardon me: if you accept the proposition that the government targets organizations for IRS scrutiny because of their political views, and you still say things like “why take the Fifth if you have nothing to hide”, then you’re either an idiot or a dishonest partisan hack.

verbaluce on March 12, 2014 at 11:56 AM

However, the House doesn’t need Holder’s approval to throw her in the House pokey (admittedly, about as fearful as it sounds) nor to refer the case to the federal courts, where the House’s own attorneys can prosecute the case.

de rigueur on March 12, 2014 at 11:46 AM

I didn’t know that they could go around Holder like this. What is this process called? Where may I learn more about it?

Kaffa on March 12, 2014 at 11:58 AM

Lerner, and those who assisted her belong in PRISON!

GarandFan on March 12, 2014 at 11:59 AM

Putting aside whether or not she has committed any crimes whenever you get pulled up in front of Congress or any kind of situation like that its not unreasonable to fear that the government may twist your words around and find something to charge you with if they want to find something to charge you with. The Fifth Amendment was designed to protect people against this type of action so with how heated and political the situation is I can hardly blame her for wanting to protect herself.

roryn00 on March 12, 2014 at 12:00 PM

So many verbs so little action.

APACHEWHOKNOWS on March 12, 2014 at 12:00 PM

Del Dolemonte on March 12, 2014 at 11:23 AM

I said just why in my comment.

She has no idea what charges she faces

verbaloon on March 12, 2014 at 11:42 AM

LOL-

Del Dolemonte on March 12, 2014 at 12:03 PM

God, she’s one ugly broad.

lostmotherland on February 26, 2014 at 4:09 PM

Always with the personal attacks?

slickwillie2001 on March 12, 2014 at 12:06 PM

Why is she NOT already in an orange jumpsuit, handcuffs, and leg chains?
That would be a good look for her….

dentarthurdent on March 12, 2014 at 12:08 PM

My understanding is that the 5th amendment is to protect one from criminal prosecution. However, it does not protect your job nor your pension. You can be fired from your job and lose your pension if you take the 5th.

I believe that I read some place that certain agencies already have this rule. FAA? Does anyone know?

Kaffa on March 12, 2014 at 12:08 PM

Verbaluce, if the shoe were on the other foot, and this was a Democrat-lead committee investigating a Republican nominee, would you say the same thing? Come on.

Throat Wobbler Mangrove on March 12, 2014 at 11:22 AM

Lucy is a talking-points poster, you won’t get anything out of her.

slickwillie2001 on March 12, 2014 at 12:13 PM

Del Dolemonte on March 12, 2014 at 11:23 AM

Further…

Had to look for this – saw the other day.
A good take and rebuttal to all those ‘why take the 5th if you’re innocent?’ quips –

Pardon me: if you accept the proposition that the government targets organizations for IRS scrutiny because of their political views, and you still say things like “why take the Fifth if you have nothing to hide”, then you’re either an idiot or a dishonest partisan hack.

verbaloon on March 12, 2014 at 11:55 AM

lol, you posted this same thing twice. Can you re-post it a few more times?

I’m impressed! You found a gaming site that pretends to offer “legal analysis”.

And what’s so funny about your link is how they footnote their claims with hyperlinks. An example:

You take the Fifth because the government can’t be trusted. You take the Fifth because what the truth is, and what the government thinks the truth is, are two very different things. You take the Fifth because even if you didn’t do anything wrong your statements can be used as building blocks in dishonest, or malicious, or politically motivated prosecutions against you. You take the Fifth because if you answer questions truthfully the government may still decide you are lying and prosecute you for lying.

In the paragraph above, the original has 3 hyperlinks. All 3 of them lead back to the host blog.

That’s not legal analysis, it’s gaming hackery.

Now please name some prominent people who took the 5th who were later found to not be hiding anything, and maybe we’ll all stop laughing at you.

Del Dolemonte on March 12, 2014 at 12:14 PM

I can hardly blame her for wanting to protect herself………from prosecution.

roryn00 on March 12, 2014 at 12:00 PM

Thought I’d finish your thought for you.

antipc on March 12, 2014 at 12:15 PM

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