New IRS e-mails: Yep, direction came from D.C. and yep, it was political

posted at 9:21 pm on May 14, 2014 by Mary Katharine Ham

A tranche of new Internal Revenue Service e-mails refute the White House’s longtime defense of the agency’s actions in the IRS targeting scandal. The e-mails, uncovered by a Judicial Watch FOIA request, reveal there was direction coming from the Washington headquarters of the IRS and that the targeting of Tea Party groups was indeed political.

The Washington Examiner‘s Mark Tapscott excerpts:

In a July 2012 email, Holly Paz, who was then director of the IRS Rulings and Agreements division, asked IRS lawyer Steven Grodnitzky “to let Cindy and Sharon know how we have been handling Tea Party applications in the last few months.”

Cindy Thomas is the former director of the IRS Exempt Organizations office in Cincinnati, and Sharon Camarillo was a senior manager in its Los Angeles office.

The email conflicts with claims by Obama administration officials that the targeting effort was done exclusively by the government workers in the Cincinnati IRS office.

Grodnitzky worked in the IRS headquarters’ Exempt Organizations Technical Unit. In his response to Paz, he said his colleagues were “working the Tea party applications in coordination with Cincy. We are developing a few applications here in D.C. and providing copies of our development letters with the agent to use as examples in the development of their cases.”

The Blaze quotes a 2010 e-mail:

Thomas instructed a colleague to “let ‘Washington’ know about this potentially politically embarrassing case involving a ‘Tea Party’ organization.”

“Recent media attention to this type of organization indicates to me that this is a ‘high profile’ case. In addition to 501(c)(4) typical legislative activities, application indicates possible future political candidate support,” the memo added.

The e-mails pertain to scrutiny of Tea Party groups over two election cycles, in 2010 and 2012. Some of them are the same e-mails released to Congress but without redactions. The entire batch is here.

They also include some lovely back-and-forth between Sen. Carl Levin and the IRS about how best to use the IRS’ power to target conservative groups. Because democracy.

As the 2012 presidential election drew nearer, Levin sent a series of letters to the IRS intensifying his campaign against predominantly conservative nonprofit groups:

September 27, 2012: Levin asks for copies of the answers to IRS exemption application question 15 – a question about planned political expenditures – from four specific groups: Crossroads Grassroots Policy Strategies, Priorities USA, Americans for Prosperity, and Patriot Majority USA.

October 17, 2012: Miller informs Levin, “As discussed in our previous responses dated June 4, 2012, and August 24, 2012, the IRS cannot legally disclose whether the organizations on your list have applied for tax exemptions unless and until such application is approved.” Miller, however, then informs Levin that Americans for Prosperity and Patriot Majority have been approved, but the IRS has no records for Crossroads and Priorities USA.

October 23, 2012: Levin writes to again express his dissatisfaction with the IRS handling of “social welfare” (501(c)(4) organizations insisting that IRS guidance “misinterprets the law” by allowing any political activity. He again demands an answer as to whether the four organizations he listed in his previous letter were primarily engaged in the promotion of social welfare. He also seeks copies of tax exempt revocation letters sent due to c4 political activities, as well as statistics on how many c4s have been notified that they may be in violation due to political activities.

In perhaps the most revealing letter from the IRS to Levin, Miller on June 4, 2012, takes 16 pages to explain to the senator what IRS regulations and policies may and may not be used to evaluate political groups and assures him that the agency has considerable leeway in picking and choosing which groups would be subject to additional scrutiny:

There is no standard questionnaire used to obtain information about political activities. Although there is a template development letter that describes the general information on the case development process, the letter does not specify the information to be requested from any particular organization … Consequently, revenue agents prepare individualized questions and requests for documents relevant to the application. . .

The “Special Report” panel weighed in on the newly released documents tonight. It’s a good segment, with Steve Hayes running down all the ways this information refutes everything the White House claims and claims to stand for, Kirsten Powers suggesting maybe Congress should just file FOIAs instead of requesting documents from the most transparent administration in history, and Charles Krauthammer just calling them liars. Now, to paraphrase Krauthammer, will the press cover it? After all, dude, it’s been more than two years.

Click to watch.

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Bishop Nixon

Mr. D on May 14, 2014 at 9:23 PM

Hmmm, so the Obamanation Administration are a bunch of liars eh? Who would have thunk it…

oscarwilde on May 14, 2014 at 9:23 PM

Hmmm, so the Obamanation Administration are a bunch of liars eh? Who would have thunk it…

oscarwilde on May 14, 2014 at 9:23 PM

Filthy, greasy liars…

JohnGalt23 on May 14, 2014 at 9:25 PM

If only Congress were focusing on jobs none of this would have happened./

txmomof6 on May 14, 2014 at 9:27 PM

Wow…..Color me shocked, the most transparent administration Evahhhhhh had anything to do with this…

SHARPTOOTH on May 14, 2014 at 9:28 PM

Really? The white house instigated the IRS. Never! It was a few rogue local employees taking matters in their own hands. Thats what the administration said and who wouldn’t believe the administration. After obama said there wasnt a smidgeon of corrupt activity.

jaywemm on May 14, 2014 at 9:29 PM

CRUCIFY THEM. ROMAN STYLE.

Murphy9 on May 14, 2014 at 9:29 PM

Wasn’t it already known that Levin wanted Tea Party groups scrutinized, or did these emails just provide the proof?

supernova on May 14, 2014 at 9:29 PM

…there is going to be a stampede of trolls to this thread!…grab your saddle!

KOOLAID2 on May 14, 2014 at 9:29 PM

Duh.

fresh air on May 14, 2014 at 9:29 PM

I don’t think Republicans should emphasize this issue.

kcewa on May 14, 2014 at 9:29 PM

What I don’t have sympathy for is this now incessant cry of victim-hood from the right/cons. When is it gonna end? Might you be able to consider any other reason for electoral and legislative failures than some deep conspiracy to halt you at the door?
 
Anyway, bottom line is this ‘scandal’ fizzled months ago. And the angst here over it is just the waning pulse.
Thread will be off the homepage shortly.
>

rogerb on May 14, 2014 at 9:30 PM

Impeachable yet?

They stole an election.

wolly4321 on May 14, 2014 at 9:30 PM

What should rightfully and undoubtedly make every American cringe with disgust will most assuredly be spun as no big deal to a certain political persuasion.

Defending the Indefensible should be added to Democrat mantra.

anuts on May 14, 2014 at 9:30 PM

Oh and…….smidgen!

anuts on May 14, 2014 at 9:31 PM

The 2012 election was illegitimate. The United States is no longer a constitutional republic.

steebo77 on May 14, 2014 at 9:31 PM

“…. a cancer on the presidency”

John Dean

DaveDief on May 14, 2014 at 9:32 PM

Are we now allowed to use the D-word in describing this regime?

steebo77 on May 14, 2014 at 9:32 PM

Don’t forget Cummings and the DOJ.

Good post, MKH.

wolly4321 on May 14, 2014 at 9:32 PM

Wow, azzhat Levin is involved, what a surprise.

Bishop on May 14, 2014 at 9:32 PM

Impeachable yet?

They stole an election.

wolly4321 on May 14, 2014 at 9:30 PM

Hell, they were impeachable 723 crimes ago..

fresh air on May 14, 2014 at 9:33 PM

I look forward to hearing about this on the TV News Networks
tomorrow…..

Oh wait! I’m sure it was just a few Rogue WH Interns who did
this…they’ve been known to bite off suck more than they can chew…

ToddPA on May 14, 2014 at 9:33 PM

Limbaugh: author of the year.

schadenfreude pure.

Murphy9 on May 14, 2014 at 9:33 PM

October 23, 2012: Levin writes to again express his dissatisfaction with the IRS handling of “social welfare” (501(c)(4) organizations insisting that IRS guidance “misinterprets the law” by allowing any political activity.

Strange how Levin doesn’t seem to have that problem with Organising For America and Priorities USA.

I’m sure that is just coincidental. ///

Resist We Much on May 14, 2014 at 9:33 PM

Seems impeachable to me.

sorrowen on May 14, 2014 at 9:34 PM

AT THIS POINT, WHAT DIFFERENCE DOES IT MAKE? – Hilary

fight like a girl on May 14, 2014 at 9:34 PM

Boner still won’t do anything.

wolly4321 on May 14, 2014 at 9:36 PM

rogerb on May 14, 2014 at 9:30 PM

in your dreams.this is just getting good.

gracie on May 14, 2014 at 9:36 PM

I don’t think Republicans should emphasize this issue.
kcewa on May 14, 2014 at 9:29 PM

Regardless, this is but a product of the natural tendency of the Left. This is how they operate. This is who they are at their core. Put this card in the ever growing deck of the Left’s insatiable appetite for tyranny and pull it out liberally.

anuts on May 14, 2014 at 9:36 PM

Obama should simply address the nation in primetime, admit to everything, grant pardons to all federal government workers, and conclude with “BTW — I Won.”

What would the gutless wonders in the R Party leadership do — impeach him? Riiiiiiiiiiiiight …..

ShainS on May 14, 2014 at 9:37 PM

Tray Gowdy for speaker…

sorrowen on May 14, 2014 at 9:37 PM

Might you be able to consider any other reason for electoral and legislative failures than some deep conspiracy to halt you at the door?

rogerb on May 14, 2014 at 9:30 PM

I don’t think this site and fellow posters here have been shy about discussing electoral and legislative failures of the Republican Party. In fact, they have been doing so just as long as this IRS scandal has been brewing. All of that is irrelevant. The use of the IRS for political purposes is verboten and I do not think there is a statute of limitations on this crime, which is basically what it is.

DaveDief on May 14, 2014 at 9:38 PM

I don’t think Republicans should emphasize this issue.

kcewa on May 14, 2014 at 9:29 PM

Rand Paul, is that you?

ShainS on May 14, 2014 at 9:38 PM

Tray Gowdy for speaker…

sorrowen on May 14, 2014 at 9:37 PM

I’ll second that…

oscarwilde on May 14, 2014 at 9:39 PM

Not the hill to die on. The GOP should concentrate on winning both houses so they can do the demorat’s bidding twice as fast.

Bishop on May 14, 2014 at 9:39 PM

Not a smidgeon….

KCB on May 14, 2014 at 9:39 PM

I do not think there is a statute of limitations on this crime, which is basically what it is.

DaveDief on May 14, 2014 at 9:38 PM

Dont be silly, it would only be a crime if the Republicans had done it.

oscarwilde on May 14, 2014 at 9:40 PM

Tray Gowdy for speaker…
sorrowen on May 14, 2014 at 9:37 PM

I’ll second that…
oscarwilde on May 14, 2014 at 9:39 PM

And future AG.

anuts on May 14, 2014 at 9:41 PM

Are we now allowed to use the D-word in describing this regime?

steebo77 on May 14, 2014 at 9:32 PM

Despotic?

Dingleberry?

[warning: potential racist connotation] Dark?

ShainS on May 14, 2014 at 9:43 PM

You guys are silly if you think this “less than a smidgen of corruption” is anywhere near as important as making sure 11 million people can celebrate Cinco de Mayo as new American citizens. Come on you astroturfers, get with the program.

txmomof6 on May 14, 2014 at 9:46 PM

AT THIS POINT, WHAT DIFFERENCE DOES IT MAKE? – Hilary

None! The election it successfully impacted is over. It served its purpose in rigging the election.

xNavigator on May 14, 2014 at 9:46 PM

IRS Select Committee…?

d1carter on May 14, 2014 at 9:47 PM

Not the hill to die on. The GOP should concentrate on winning both houses so they can do the demorat’s bidding twice as fast.

Bishop on May 14, 2014 at 9:39 PM

Heh.

I think the R Leadership has finally decided that amnesty is the hill to … uhm, literally … die on.

ShainS on May 14, 2014 at 9:49 PM

Yes, I am against using the IRS as a political sledgehammer but we should not emphasize this… it was against the Tea Party and so what?

d1carter on May 14, 2014 at 9:49 PM

I wonder if there emails from Boehner urging the IRS to look into Tea Party applications…?

d1carter on May 14, 2014 at 9:51 PM

kcewa on May 14, 2014 at 9:51 PM

In your dreams.this is just getting good. gracie on May 14, 2014 at 9:36 PM

How so? You and I know about it. You think yahoo news will report it?

You thing boehner will do anything?

Pretty sure rogerb was presenting snark, but he’s right.
Who’s going to be held accountable by whom? The IRS by Holder?

Don’t think so.

wolly4321 on May 14, 2014 at 9:53 PM

Limbaugh: author of the year.

schadenfreude pure.

Murphy9 on May 14, 2014 at 9:33 PM

…OT/ and did you see the picture in the middle of the page…under the Drudge Headline………. my eye went right there when the page popped up…I thought for a second there it was the one Bmore did…of Pelosi!

KOOLAID2 on May 14, 2014 at 9:54 PM

And they weren’t going to be content with just denying these groups, they wanted to take it a step further and prosecute them to discourage other conservative groups. These people are pure evil.

Conservalicious on May 14, 2014 at 9:54 PM

But don’t worry.. Boenhner is speaker of the house.

JellyToast on May 14, 2014 at 9:56 PM

The GOP needs to stop investigating Benghazi and the IRS scandals because granting amnesty to violent criminal, gang members, visa overstayers, and other sovereignty violators is much more important.

Do I need the phucking sarc tag?

BuckeyeSam on May 14, 2014 at 9:57 PM

Lets see if Boehner and Cantor appoint a select committee to investigate the IRS scandal now that there is clear evidence of criminal wrong doing an ethics violations with congressional members. My guess is no, after all it only the tea party that was targeted, and Boehner and Cantor despise the tea party just as much as democraps do.

paulsur on May 14, 2014 at 9:58 PM

He’s quite a community organizer.

John the Libertarian on May 14, 2014 at 9:59 PM

I can’t wait until the State Run Media ignores this….

d1carter on May 14, 2014 at 9:59 PM

It’s not “redacting” if it’s done for political reasons – it’s obstruction. It’s doctoring.

forest on May 14, 2014 at 10:00 PM

Journolisters are discussing why this is nothing new…

d1carter on May 14, 2014 at 10:01 PM

But don’t worry.. Boenhner is speaker of the house.

JellyToast on May 14, 2014 at 9:56 PM

And this would have not come out had it not been for the GOP controlled House pushing and pushing for years now. Credit where credit is due.

V7_Sport on May 14, 2014 at 10:02 PM

Levin has a D after his name, so all is well. Imagine though if this happened with an R in the White House and an R Senator.

The MSM would be on this 24/7.

cat_owner on May 14, 2014 at 10:03 PM

Because i have been self employed or an independent contractor for most of my life, I just now realized the genius of withholding income taxes from paychecks. The 53% should simply stop funding this, but they can’t. I don’t know what I am doing next April, but I have a conscientious objection to funding a criminal enterprise that make the Sopranos look like kids stealing candy at the Walgreens…

PointnClick on May 14, 2014 at 10:03 PM

I think we can ALL look on the bright side of this…

..we really dodged a bullet when Flip Flop Romney lost…

..at least according to the Headlines…

ToddPA on May 14, 2014 at 10:03 PM

#BringBackIntegrity

faraway on May 14, 2014 at 10:04 PM

paulsur on May 14, 2014 at 9:58 PM

Karma might be about to bite Cantor in the butt. He’s in trouble and could lose his primary.

cat_owner on May 14, 2014 at 10:04 PM

It’s not “redacting” if it’s done for political reasons –it’s obstruction. It’s doctoring. forest on May 14, 2014 at 10:00 PM

Yea, so what are they going to do about it?

Sic Holder on them?

There is no enforcement mechanism that hasn’t been corrupted.

You have any suggestions?

wolly4321 on May 14, 2014 at 10:09 PM

Who’s the guy in DC who had to approve the apps…?

d1carter on May 14, 2014 at 10:10 PM

Meanwhile, the Man on the Street thinks it’s funny that he can’t remember whether there are 8 or 12 Supreme Court justices, or how many senators are elected from his state. Obama could hold a press conference and state that he asked the IRS to get rid of these tea bagger organizations, and it probably wouldn’t even make the nightly news.

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater on May 14, 2014 at 10:10 PM

The 2012 election was illegitimate. The United States is no longer a constitutional republic.

steebo77 on May 14, 2014 at 9:31 PM

Yep, it’s now officially a thugocracy.

AZCoyote on May 14, 2014 at 10:11 PM

This is just disgusting. MSM goes along with it. Zip nada nothing is what will be reported.

COgirl on May 14, 2014 at 10:11 PM

PointnClick on May 14, 2014 at 10:03 PM

You mean not file?

Barkycare settled that for me.

wolly4321 on May 14, 2014 at 10:13 PM

Obama could hold a press conference and state that he asked the IRS to get rid of these tea bagger organizations, and it probably wouldn’t even make the nightly news.
Dr. Kenneth Noisewater on May 14, 2014 at 10:10 PM

I disagree. It would be met with great fanfare and applause.

anuts on May 14, 2014 at 10:14 PM

Impeachable yet?

They stole an election.

wolly4321 on May 14, 2014 at 9:30 PM

And they are going to steal another one.

crankyoldlady on May 14, 2014 at 10:15 PM

I don’t think Republicans should emphasize this issue.

kcewa on May 14, 2014 at 9:29 PM

Bullshit – if Republicans had done this the democrats would have already had show trials and executions.

The Republicans need to get done in the gutter and start fighting these bastards or our kids and grandkids will be facing off with the fascists in the streets.

redguy on May 14, 2014 at 10:17 PM

You don’t think the House leadership was not interested in getting to the bottom of this do ya…?

d1carter on May 14, 2014 at 10:17 PM

I am sick and tired of this reprehensible Administration and the Democratic drones who support it. Time to impeach.

oldennis on May 14, 2014 at 10:18 PM

Yep, it’s now officially a thugocracy.

AZCoyote on May 14, 2014 at 10:11 PM

So why do the establishment Republicans go along with this crap?

They consider themselves the “good” side of the government….heh

The democrats socialists ARE the government.

redguy on May 14, 2014 at 10:19 PM

This is just disgusting. MSM goes along with it. Zip nada nothing is what will be reported.

COgirl on May 14, 2014 at 10:11 PM

This MSM is just the propaganda wing for the socialists….

redguy on May 14, 2014 at 10:20 PM

This is not an Administration. It’s a coup.

oldennis on May 14, 2014 at 10:20 PM

There’s not a smidgen of evidence that Obama tells the truth. In fact, he’s a pathological liar.

oldennis on May 14, 2014 at 10:22 PM

The GOP needs to stop investigating Benghazi and the IRS scandals because granting amnesty to violent criminal, gang members, visa overstayers, and other sovereignty violators is much more important.

Do I need the phucking sarc tag?

BuckeyeSam on May 14, 2014 at 9:57 PM

Heh, sick isn’t it???

When all hell breaks loose – do you think the military would try to stop an armed militia of one million people?

WHy do you think all these agencies are armed to the teeth?

Do you really think the EPA, IRS, BLM, etc would actually start killing American citizens if Obama told them too? (I hear Glenn Beck saying stop it – just stop it….) Wake up Mr. beck.

redguy on May 14, 2014 at 10:24 PM

This is not an Administration. It’s a coup.

oldennis on May 14, 2014 at 10:20 PM

Yeah, and in a Republic those may not end very well.

redguy on May 14, 2014 at 10:25 PM

I disagree. It would be met with great fanfare and applause.

anuts on May 14, 2014 at 10:14 PM

And “SI SUE PUEDE!” chants.

HikaruKitsune on May 14, 2014 at 10:27 PM

For me this is more important than Benghazi. I don’t believe anyone expected Amb. Stevens and company to get killed. It was just plain old incompetence which has been shown on every level by this administration. As I have said before, Ms. Lerner is a repeat offender from her days at the FEC and even when they lose in court, they win in the goals they have set. I also believe that this blueprint is the basis for the John Doe warrants used in Wisconsin to go after Gov. Walker’s proponents. Until somebody goes to jail, these guys will excess the donor lists, run donors off and keep these groups out of commission by tying them up legally and financially.

Cindy Munford on May 14, 2014 at 10:33 PM

Meh. This is not the hill to die on. – GOP

Augustinian on May 14, 2014 at 10:34 PM

Kirsten in denial, but maybe she’ll shake herself out of it.

J.B. Say on May 14, 2014 at 10:34 PM

The only way this Administration and the Democrats who support it will get the message is if it and they are swept from office.

oldennis on May 14, 2014 at 10:34 PM

The Republicans need to get done in the gutter and start fighting these bastards or our kids and grandkids will be facing off with the fascists in the streets.

redguy on May 14, 2014 at 10:17 PM

Not gonna happen. The GOP likes the Big Totalitarian Gumbint paradigm.

Augustinian on May 14, 2014 at 10:36 PM

 
 
smidgen
 
 

ignatzk on May 14, 2014 at 10:49 PM

You haven’t convinced me it’s politically based. All this shows is that the IRS was trying to develop a uniform process

jim56 on May 14, 2014 at 10:52 PM

There’s a good Chekist. Go for it jimbo3. Advocate for using your beloved government to destroy and kill people.

You disgusting fking reprobate.

Murphy9 on May 14, 2014 at 10:56 PM

It’ll be interesting to hear what Obama has to say about not knowing — wait, never heard of — Carl Levin. Not even a tweet to that, uhh, whoever he is.

Lourdes on May 14, 2014 at 10:57 PM

You haven’t convinced me it’s politically based. All this shows is that the IRS was trying to develop a uniform process
jim56 on May 14, 2014 at 10:52 PM

Is this serious?!

anuts on May 14, 2014 at 10:58 PM

The only way this Administration and the Democrats who support it will get the message is if it and they are swept from office.

oldennis on May 14, 2014 at 10:34 PM

They’ll never get the message. Once swept from office, they’ll claim Bush stole their jobs. And the darn climate-deniers, certainly THEY had a lot to do with frying chads.

Lourdes on May 14, 2014 at 11:00 PM

Until somebody goes to jail, these guys will excess the donor lists, run donors off and keep these groups out of commission by tying them up legally and financially.

Cindy Munford on May 14, 2014 at 10:33 PM

No, no. They’re DEMOCRATS, they’ll never change. Jail, voter disgust, criminal charges/convictions, wrong-in-every-possible-way, no, no, they’re Democrats. They’ll never change, they’ll just get more violent with their demands that everyone ELSE is at fault.

Lourdes on May 14, 2014 at 11:03 PM

You haven’t convinced me it’s politically based. All this shows is that the IRS was trying to develop a uniform process
jim56 on May 14, 2014 at 10:52 PM

Is this serious?!

anuts on May 14, 2014 at 10:58 PM

Yes, and I’ve reported Murphy9 for violation of the terms of use.

jim56 on May 14, 2014 at 11:03 PM

IRS gets a shiver up its collective legs when Obama shakes his leg.

Goons love Goons.
Crooks love Crooks.
Liars love liars.
Evil loves evil.
Crime loves crime.

Truth comes for them all.
The MSM will never know or care.
The AP will not report one lie of the commie Democrats.
The AP lust for a incest session with any commie Democrat in power.

Sick.

APACHEWHOKNOWS on May 14, 2014 at 11:06 PM

jim56 on May 14, 2014 at 11:03 PM

What is your calculus that tells you a rate of 10-1 is uniform?

anuts on May 14, 2014 at 11:09 PM

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