Videos: Paul Ryan, Kevin Brady expose holes in the IRS’s story

posted at 12:01 pm on June 20, 2014 by Noah Rothman

IRS Commissioner John Koskinen has long asserted that he knew nothing about the corrupted data which resulted in the loss of thousands of former executive Lois Lerner’s emails until the late spring. Republicans have asserted, however, that the information that the received from the IRS suggested to them that the agency was aware of the missing emails as early as February. In testimony before a congressional committee on Friday, it appeared as though Koskinen was coming around to the Republican version of events.

In an explosive exchange on Friday Koskinen was probed by Rep. Kevin Brady (R-TX) over what he seemed to imply was an effort to mislead the committee.

“You already knew in March they were not retrievable,” Brady alleged. “A, you didn’t inform the congressional investigation. B, two months later you told us you would provide all the emails without limitations. And you knew you didn’t have them.”

“By March, I did not know they were irretrievable,” Koskinen countered. Brady interrupted and reminded the commissioner that he had just testified under oath that he was aware of the problems associated with the emails in March.

“Mr. Commissioner, why, at this point, why should anyone believe you?” Brady asked.

“The IRS denied for two years targeting of Americans based on their political beliefs. That wasn’t the truth. They said it was a few rogue agents in Cincinnati. That wasn’t the truth. You said you were targeting liberal organizations. That wasn’t the truth. Then you assured us you would provide us all the emails in May and that wasn’t the truth. And today, you are telling us out of thousands of IRS computers, the one that lost the emails was a person of interest in an ongoing congressional investigation. And that is not the truth either.”

Even the normally subdued Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) was smoldering in his questioning of Koskinen. “This is a pattern of abuse,” he said. “A pattern of behavior that is not giving us any confidence that this agency is being impartial.”

The discrepancy seems to have made journalist’s reporter senses go crazy. “Conflict,” declared CNN’s Lisa Des Desjardins:

Politico, too, got the same version of events from Koskinen:

Republicans also blasted the IRS for not bringing the missing emails to the attention of congressional investigators sooner.

It says the agency first knew of the emails as early as February 2014. Koskinen on Monday said he learned about the Lerner emails in the Spring.

Koskinen’s story is not airtight.


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Comment pages: 1 2

On second thought, all comments are repetition of someone else so whatever…

BoxHead1 on June 20, 2014 at 12:59 PM

They are either complicit or stupid. I can’t decide which makes me feel better.

Cindy Munford on June 20, 2014 at 12:55 PM

Hanlon’s Razor is a convenient alibi for the pernicious dirtbags we “elected” as public servants.

ezspirit on June 20, 2014 at 1:00 PM

The GOP leadership has stated that want to crush the TEA Party….no?

d1carter on June 20, 2014 at 1:00 PM

The House has the right, though it’s languished for decades. TonyP on June 20, 2014 at 12:50 PM

Those saying that nothing is going to come of this are 100 percent correct, the GOPe is lying and pretending to be outraged, but the truth is that they were as much behind the IRS’s actions as anyone in the Obamanation Administration was. That is why despite the blatantly obvious nature of the lies being told, the GOPe is echoing the IRS claims that Lois Lerner’s emails are gone forever. oscarwilde on June 20, 2014 at 12:45 PM

Akzed on June 20, 2014 at 1:00 PM

In an explosive exchange…
– Noah

I don’t see an exchange here.
As the Ryan clip best illustrates, they’re not interested in hearing anything. They riff on a series of rhetorical ‘why should we believe you?’ accusations. Nothing of substance.
They’ve written the narrative and won’t let this guy respond.
He manages to get out a simple ‘that is not true’ before the gavel comes down. Ryan comes off like a bratty junior lawyer.
I know this sends tingles up the legs of many…but it’s theater – not oversight and not an investigation.

verbaluce on June 20, 2014 at 1:01 PM

What tells me that we as a nation are pretty much doomed is that the left doesn’t seem to care about this. If ever a topic was bipartisan it’s the IRS suppressing speech to fix an election. Good Lord.

WitchDoctor on June 20, 2014 at 12:14 PM

The left has no problem with suppressing speech as long as it’s speech they don’t approve of. The left also has no problem at all with fixing elections. They’ve been doing that for years.

The fact of the matter is that they’re pretty fond of dictatorship and “re-education camps”, too.

Just give them a little time.

trigon on June 20, 2014 at 1:02 PM

Let me get this straight…

The IRS sends hard drives (FULL OF CONFIDENTIAL DATA!!!!11!!!) to a 3rd party ‘recycler’??????????????

faraway on June 20, 2014 at 12:34 PM

This is routine for major corporations. We often have hundreds or even thousands of hard drives with potentially sensitive data on them to be destroyed. You can’t do that in-house. You send them to a specialized vendor with all of the appropriate clearances who then destroys and recycles the material according to the appropriate government standard. In the private sector, we actually have to follow the rules that the government makes up, no matter how onerous. The government, apparently, not so much.

Immolate on June 20, 2014 at 1:07 PM

I know this sends tingles up the legs of many…but it’s theater – not oversight and not an investigation.

Lois Lerner on June 20, 2014 at 1:01 PM

Del Dolemonte on June 20, 2014 at 1:07 PM

They are either complicit or stupid. I can’t decide which makes me feel better.

Cindy Munford on June 20, 2014 at 12:55 PM

The majority are complicit. They want to keep their privileged positions. They fear the press going after them – so they will engage in a kabuki theater that everyone knows is a kabuki theater so they can, in the words of Mel Brooks, ‘keep their phoney baloney jobs’.

The some are just stupid – which is why they got into politics in the first place.

But there are also some, mainly in the leadership, who will try to justify their inaction by saying that if they were too aggressive, at some point, it will come around to bite a GOP Administration. Those are the one’s who are beyond stupid and complicit.

Look at this from the Obama side….all he has to do is run out the clock until 1/20/2017. He’s got pardon’s to offer – which is why the IRS is willing to admit they violated federal records keeping acts, because that charge is far less than a repeat of Nixon’s 2nd Article of Impeachment. He’s not going to piss anyone off by firing them, like Nixon did to John Dean in April 1973 – and opened the flood of Dean’s testimony in June. That testimony combined with Sirica’s order releasing the tapes (saying they weren’t protected by Presidential privilege) cooked Nixon.

Obama know why Nixon fell. He’s not going to make the same mistake, and he knows he’s already won because of the way conservative groups were neutered in 2012.

Athos on June 20, 2014 at 1:08 PM

verbaluce on June 20, 2014 at 1:01 PM

Have you been following this story or are you new to it?
After you catch up please answer this question:
Do you think it’s odd that these 6 high level employees at the center of this scandal at the IRS, all had their emails lost … Particularly Lois Lerner’s, the one who took the 5th … . Does that seem even a teensy weensy bit suspicious to you?

BoxHead1 on June 20, 2014 at 1:08 PM

oscarwilde on June 20, 2014 at 12:45 PM

When you look like you have seven Senate seats locked up, then we can talk about ousting the Minority Leader. If you had gotten rid of Lindsay Graham or Lamar Alexander, we could have talked. No one even contributed to primary Boehner, and that was one we could afford to lose. So, come back again when you have a better idea than give the Democrats control at the expense of an imperfect GOP majority.

ezspirit on June 20, 2014 at 12:49 PM

Please, the End Does not Justify the means. Victory purely for the sake of victory is indistinguishable from defeat. Celebrate your Pyhrric victory without me. A charade remains a charade only for as long as those enabling it insist on calling it anything but what it is.

My comment had nothing to do with Senate seat pick-ups or losses, save only that Boehner and McConnell were making every effort to prevent TEA Party or Conservative Candidates from getting elected and intimidating TEA Party and Conservative political groups.

That you went there only shows that not only do you know what I said is true but that you approve of it as well. Clearly, like Boehner and McConnell, you consider TEA Party and Conservative groups and candidates to be a greater danger to the GOPe than you do Democrats Marxist and other assorted Liberal Progressives.

oscarwilde on June 20, 2014 at 1:11 PM

To bad we cannot hang them.

redguy on June 20, 2014 at 12:07 PM

Who says so??

Deano1952 on June 20, 2014 at 12:16 PM

And it’s green, too. A tree and a hemp rope is all you need.

yesiamapirate on June 20, 2014 at 1:11 PM

How many pardons will it take to quash all of them? We’ll know on 1/20/2017 when they’re issued before any indictments can be handed down by the next administration.

Steve Eggleston on June 20, 2014 at 12:45 PM

Indictments? Ain’t gonna happen. They will hem and haw about how that would make Republicans look vindictive and set a precedent for prosecuting outgoing administrations, and how MEAN that would be and all that. There is not a spine among them, they won’t do it.

iurockhead on June 20, 2014 at 1:22 PM

Indictments? Ain’t gonna happen. They will hem and haw about how that would make Republicans look vindictive and set a precedent for prosecuting outgoing administrations, and how MEAN that would be and all that. There is not a spine among them, they won’t do it.

iurockhead on June 20, 2014 at 1:22 PM

Isn’t that what I said? A blanket pardon equals no possible indictment.

Even if there weren’t a blanket pardon waiting for every member of Team SCOAMT who keeps his/her mouth shut before Congress at the end of the Presidency, you’re right – there will be nothing done.

Steve Eggleston on June 20, 2014 at 1:28 PM

I’m about to go into a meeting to get yelled at about deploying the wrong version of code. I wish I worked at a place where I could flush millions of records and say “oh well…”

tlynch001 on June 20, 2014 at 1:33 PM

Didn’t someone on our side go to jail over not being able to recollect the correct dates? Why isn’t this lying turkey in jumpsuit orange?

dominigan on June 20, 2014 at 1:33 PM

How many pardons will it take to quash all of them? We’ll know on 1/20/2017 when they’re issued before any indictments can be handed down by the next administration.

Steve Eggleston on June 20, 2014 at 12:45 PM

Somebody please school me as I don’t know the answer, but can a pardon can be issued for POSSIBLE charges to come? Or can they only be issued for charges or convictions already made. IF it’s the latter, then perhaps no charges should be made until Jan. 2017?

climbnjump on June 20, 2014 at 1:35 PM

verbaluce on June 20, 2014 at 1:01 PM

Scooter Libby went to jail for a lot less prevarication than has already been exposed in this affair. Oh, and did you know you sound just like Rep. Charles Sandman (R-NJ) circa July 1974?

Athanasius on June 20, 2014 at 1:37 PM

The Republicans were ok on principle, but …

WHERE WERE THE TECH QUESTIONS?

Bottom line: The Republicans don’t care about the Tea Party. They want them persecuted. End of story.

LibertyJane on June 20, 2014 at 1:38 PM

Has anyone else noticed how many Yobamites look like reptiles? Just saying…

Dirty Creature on June 20, 2014 at 12:25 PM

I have a pet cobra that I trust more than an obaMEite.

VegasRick on June 20, 2014 at 12:30 PM

I’d trust a scorpion looking for a lift before I trusted Barry.

slickwillie2001 on June 20, 2014 at 1:38 PM

I keep getting the feeling the the “missing email” on Lois Lerner’s hard drive are actually “David Windsor” style emails.
That is to say these are “off the record” emails.

N.B. David Windsor is the name of ex-EPA chief Lisa Jackson’s dog

J_Crater on June 20, 2014 at 1:40 PM

You can grant all sorts of power to an elected body.

If there is no will to use it as they swore they would do it is to no avail.

ajacksonian on June 20, 2014 at 1:45 PM

This is nothing less than an abuse of power and the media should be ashamed of themselves- if they had any shame.

This administration used the offices of our government as a political weapon against its opponents. This was clearly directed by and/or with the knowledge of our executive branch.

This isn’t some Kabuki Theater or political invention. It is a criminal act that would have brought down any other administration.

At what point to we loudly declare the enemies of democracy taken over our government?

Marcus Traianus on June 20, 2014 at 1:50 PM

I don’t see an exchange here.
As the Ryan clip best illustrates, they’re not interested in hearing anything. They riff on a series of rhetorical ‘why should we believe you?’ accusations. Nothing of substance.
They’ve written the narrative and won’t let this guy respond.
He manages to get out a simple ‘that is not true’ before the gavel comes down. Ryan comes off like a bratty junior lawyer.
I know this sends tingles up the legs of many…but it’s theater – not oversight and not an investigation.

verbaluce on June 20, 2014 at 1:01 PM

Uh huh. It’s good seeing lefties pretend that corruption doesn’t exist while also arguing to make the federal government more powerful.

Keep up the good work comrade.

gwelf on June 20, 2014 at 1:54 PM

You just can’t have enough 5.56 these days. And, I am speaking as someone who was audited by the IRS for the only time in my life a few months after I joined the NRA in 2013 about a tax return from 2010.

crrr6 on June 20, 2014 at 1:56 PM

Have you been following this story or are you new to it?
After you catch up please answer this question:
Do you think it’s odd that these 6 high level employees at the center of this scandal at the IRS, all had their emails lost … Particularly Lois Lerner’s, the one who took the 5th … . Does that seem even a teensy weensy bit suspicious to you?

BoxHead1 on June 20, 2014 at 1:08 PM

Verbaluce has shown up on all of these IRS threads since the beginning playing the same tune each time: nothing to see here except a GOP witch hunt.

He’s had the facts put before him time and time again. None of it penetrates. He’s comfortable with the corruption of “public institutions” as long as they attack people he doesn’t like. He’s comfortable with government agencies committing serious crimes as long as it serves his side.

gwelf on June 20, 2014 at 1:57 PM

Enough with these hearings already. They’ve accomplished nothing other than to expose a cover-up which was obvious from the start yet the MSM refuses to acknowledge for obvious reasons.

Please appoint a special prosecutor already and start threatening these liars with offenses. Heads need to roll NOW!
ENOUGH!

Pelosi Schmelosi on June 20, 2014 at 1:58 PM

Once again, there is a huge missing link in this story and ALL of the media — along with Congress — are blowing right by it:

Don’t let them define the playing field. This is NOT a question (only) of whether the e-mail records can be restored today.

The question is: what was done at the time of the (supposed) crashes to rebuild the hard drives (or conform new hard drives) from the back-up tapes that did exist? Then, not now.

They had some seven machines magically crash. Fine. They had back-up data. It existed then. That was, after all, the point. Were these seven people — including Lois Lerner — happy to start from scratch and forget about all their ongoing e-mail conversations on pending matters? Of course not. All that data would have routinely been restored as a part of the IT function of getting these seven (fictitious) hard drives either rebuilt or replaced. No one has suggested that the back-up data didn’t exist at the time of the crash(es).

Again, a trick question for the administration. Q: Why do you back up data? Ans: So you can restore it.

Congress is calling the wrong people as witnesses.

They need to be talking to the people who worked on these machines. It would be nice to have these record back-ups now. But, it’s not nearly as relevant as what was done with the back-ups that the IRS did have at the time.

IndieDogg on June 20, 2014 at 2:00 PM

I don’t see an exchange here.
As the Ryan clip best illustrates, they’re not interested in hearing anything. They riff on a series of rhetorical ‘why should we believe you?’ accusations. Nothing of substance.
They’ve written the narrative and won’t let this guy respond.
He manages to get out a simple ‘that is not true’ before the gavel comes down. Ryan comes off like a bratty junior lawyer.
I know this sends tingles up the legs of many…but it’s theater – not oversight and not an investigation.

verbaluce on June 20, 2014 at 1:01 PM

You’re sorely needed on this thread:

http://hotair.com/archives/2014/06/20/white-house-notified-of-missing-irs-e-mail-6-weeks-before-congress/

Maybe you can tell us about the super-secret it’s not been revealed in any detail internal investigation Obama used to go from outrageously outraged about IRS corruption and a promise to get to the bottom of it and hold people accountable to claiming there ins’t a smidge of corruption at the IRS? Please enlighten us.

gwelf on June 20, 2014 at 2:00 PM

Earlier in the week, I joked that today, the IRS / Obama Administration would start blaming the challenges with tracking down Lerner’s and the other six people’s emails on either the sequester, the government shutdown, or both.

Today, IRS worm, John Koskinen effectively blamed it on the sequester – specifically on the IRS being underfunded….

He said they have turned over about 30,000 emails, including 25,000 from Ms. Lerner’s account and another 5,000 recovered from some of those other IRS employees. Still to come are more than 30,000 more emails, including nearly 20,000 that were lost on Ms. Lerner’s hard drive but were gleaned from other employees’ accounts.

In the process of the investigation, Mr. Koskinen said they found seven other employees’ hard drives had also crashed — though he said it’s unclear right now whether emails were lost in those crashes.

He said the spate of crashes is to be expected given “the agency’s aging information-technology infrastructure,” which he blamed on a lack of funds.

Athos on June 20, 2014 at 2:01 PM

At what point to we loudly declare the enemies of democracy taken over our government?

Marcus Traianus on June 20, 2014 at 1:50 PM

IMHO, we’re already fighting a civ!l war. Everything’s already started but the shooting.

crrr6 on June 20, 2014 at 2:01 PM

Teflon.

Nothing will ever stick.

Investigations, by the corrupt, of the corrupt is useless.

Going nowhere.

Carnac on June 20, 2014 at 2:01 PM

Don’t let them define the playing field. This is NOT a question (only) of whether the e-mail records can be restored today. The question is: what was done at the time of the (supposed) crashes to rebuild the hard drives (or conform new hard drives) from the back-up tapes that did exist? Then, not now.

IndieDogg on June 20, 2014 at 2:00 PM

Actually, this is incorrect. The only thing that needs to said – over and over again – is this:

“The very fact that these supposedly “lost” emails ever existed is proof that you’re lying. For an email to exist, it is required that said email be sent in the first place. Once that sending occurs, there are going to be at least 2 copies available: one copy on the hard drive of the computer from which it originated and one copy residing on the server that transported the email to it’s destination. So…where are the server copies? Or are you going to tell us that the servers crashed as well? And that you then threw those servers out as well?”

rvastar on June 20, 2014 at 2:10 PM

Posted on another thread but wanted to make sure folks see this. Also faxed to Issa’s office:

Once again, there is a huge missing link in this story and ALL of the media — along with Congress — are blowing right by it:

Don’t let them define the playing field. This is NOT a question (only) of whether the e-mail records can be restored today.

The question is: what was done at the time of the (supposed) crashes to rebuild the hard drives (or conform new hard drives) from the back-up tapes that did exist? Then, not now.

They had some seven machines magically crash. Fine. They had back-up data. It existed then. That was, after all, the point. Were these seven people — including Lois Lerner — happy to start from scratch and forget about all their ongoing e-mail conversations on pending matters? Of course not. All that data would have routinely been restored as a part of the IT function of getting these seven (fictitious) hard drives either rebuilt or replaced. No one has suggested that the back-up data didn’t exist at the time of the crash(es).

Again, a trick question for the administration. Q: Why do you back up data? Ans: So you can restore it.

Congress is calling the wrong people as witnesses.

They need to be talking to the people who worked on these machines. It would be nice to have these record back-ups now. But, it’s not nearly as relevant as what was done with the back-ups that the IRS did have at the time.

IndieDogg on June 20, 2014 at 2:18 PM

So…where are the server copies? Or are you going to tell us that the servers crashed as well? And that you then threw those servers out as well?”

rvastar on June 20, 2014 at 2:10 PM

The agency, at the time, used a tape back-up system (common). Those tapes were re-used (recorded over) every six months. So, the back-ups do not exist today. That’s their story, not mine.

So, the question, again, is what was done with the back-ups when they did exist, at the time of the event? You call this question “incorrect.” You probably mean “irrelevant” but that’s not right, either.

Why does it matter? My suggestion is that those e-mails, along with the rest of the data backed up from those work stations, was restored at the time.

What would that mean? They have been intentionally deleted because the content is too damning. To some people much higher on the food chain than Lois Lerner.

In other words, I do not believe the e-mails are missing — if they are — due to any long-ago computer crash. Why? See above.

IndieDogg on June 20, 2014 at 2:26 PM

I keep getting the feeling the the “missing email” on Lois Lerner’s hard drive are actually “David Richard Windsor” style emails.
That is to say these are “off the record” emails.

N.B. David Richard Windsor is the name of ex-EPA chief Lisa Jackson’s dog

J_Crater on June 20, 2014 at 1:40 PM

FIFY
No one has yet brought Lerner’s private email and the potential it may have been used for official government business. It is a good question to ask given the history of members of the current administration and their propensity for alternate accounts.

airupthere on June 20, 2014 at 2:27 PM

..this is all nothing but a circus until the members of this committee, congress, the media, and punditry (including the Townhall-centric wusses in Hot gas) all grow a pair that need to be carted around in wheel barrows.

Maybe I am being too vicious, but I remember Watergate and the resultant hearings. While it was correct to get at the shenanigans that Dick Nixon and his crew were pulling, it was a burglary fer crissakes! But it was exposed as a malignant case of government corruption and a president was forced to resign.

Here, the fish rots from the head down and the media and pundits and GOPe toss bread to the adoring American Idol crowds from the floor of the coliseum.

This deserves nothing less than blood in the sand, broken chariots and driver BPs strewn all over, and lions chewing on slaves. Cue the guy with the trident and the net. Bring on a phalanx of characters wearing jock straps and skilled with the Thracian sword!
(Note: here I lampoon myself for effect. But you get my drift.)

The War Planner on June 20, 2014 at 2:29 PM

The IRS attack on TEA Party and Conservative groups was a coordinated and bipartisan effort.

Those saying that nothing is going to come of this are 100 percent correct, the GOPe is lying and pretending to be outraged, but the truth is that they were as much behind the IRS’s actions as anyone in the Obamanation Administration was. That is why despite the blatantly obvious nature of the lies being told, the GOPe is echoing the IRS claims that Lois Lerner’s emails are gone forever.
oscarwilde on June 20, 2014 at 12:45 PM

Exactly…

The handwriting IS on the wall.

Smoke and Mirrors

Scrumpy on June 20, 2014 at 2:34 PM

You know this is nothing that a little piano wire can’t resolve.

bbinfl on June 20, 2014 at 2:48 PM

I’m fed up with the gop’s Kabuki theater. Throw this smug corruptocrat in the House brig until the e-mails mysteriously reappear.

The gop appears complicit if they allow the IRS to get away with this. What an outrage and insult to everyone’s intelligence.

Jayrae on June 20, 2014 at 2:54 PM

The Republicans were ok on principle, but …

WHERE WERE THE TECH QUESTIONS?

LibertyJane on June 20, 2014 at 1:38 PM

Exactly.
Make the IT people testify under oath. Ask for work logs..what efforts were taken to retrieve data..who ordered the drives be destroyed, etc. You know…the obvious questions to ask and the people to answer them.

Mimzey on June 20, 2014 at 2:58 PM

Kabuki theater.

nottakingsides on June 20, 2014 at 2:58 PM

verbaluce on June 20, 2014 at 1:01 PM

Uh huh. It’s good seeing lefties pretend that corruption doesn’t exist while also arguing to make the federal government more powerful.

Keep up the good work comrade.

gwelf on June 20, 2014 at 1:54 PM

And good work not responding to my point – that this wasn’t an ‘exchange’.
Are you aware that the missing emails are from a hard drive crash from 3 years ago?
Write me the story here where Lerner, or ‘the IRS brass’ or ‘The White House’ presciently, intentionally, and criminally destroyed evidence 3 years ago in anticipation of this controversy?
I know you can…and I don’t mean that sarcastically.
All you need to do is spin a hypothetical theory and assign devious (unprovable) motives.
Since the emails are gone, you are free to suggest that could’ve said all sorts of things. Also, be sure to share that we think it’s likely that the recipients or senders were/also are in on this conspiracy as well.
You will not be proven wrong.
(You will also never be proven right.)
And I think when doing this your oratory should be as strong as possible…consider suggesting that these hypothetical crimes could quite possibly ‘rise to the level of treason!’.
(And we all know what the penalty for treason is.)

Lastly if anyone doesn’t accept these absurd hypotheticals are facts in no need of real evidence at all, accuse them of being a communist and refer to them derisively as ‘comrade’.

verbaluce on June 20, 2014 at 3:06 PM

verbaluce on June 20, 2014 at 3:06 PM

Verby, do not delve into IT matter you’re pea-sized brain could not possibly understand.

I work at a company that is required to keep SEVEN YEARS of email backed-up at ALL TIMES per the SARBANES-OXLEY law passed by Congress after the Enron fiasco.

The government uses Exchange servers which are PRECISELY like the one I work with every day.

It is utterly laughable these ass-clowns have lost that data, and here is why:

Exchange can be configured to store the email on the server. With the type of duties the IRS performs, it would also mean they would need access via portable devices. Using a POP configuration (local PC) would render that kind of configuration impractical.

To think a federal employee would not have that kind of instant access to email three years ago is ludicrous.

Take it from an IT Pro. The man being grilled by Congress today is a complete liar.

Turtle317 on June 20, 2014 at 3:18 PM

verbaluce on June 20, 2014 at 3:06 PM

You cite lack of evidence, which is precisely the problem.

The destruction of the evidence wasn’t criminal 3 years ago because they anticipated the investigation. It was a crime because it violated Federal Records laws. The reason we have those laws is so that Congress and the American people can hold the government accountable when agencies act outside the bounds of what is legally permissible. IF there was an intentional destruction, that is also a criminal act. As of now there is only circumstantial evidence that this information is intentionally not being produced. There is no question if laws were violated, there is only a question of how many.

It is called transparency. Something this administration used to tout.

Government should be transparent. Transparency promotes accountability and provides information for citizens about what their Government is doing. Information maintained by the Federal Government is a national asset. My Administration will take appropriate action, consistent with law and policy, to disclose information rapidly in forms that the public can readily find and use. Executive departments and agencies should harness new technologies to put information about their operations and decisions online and readily available to the public. Executive departments and agencies should also solicit public feedback to identify information of greatest use to the public.

I direct the Chief Technology Officer, in coordination with the Director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and the Administrator of General Services, to coordinate the development by appropriate executive departments and agencies, within 120 days, of recommendations for an Open Government Directive, to be issued by the Director of OMB, that instructs executive departments and agencies to take specific actions implementing the principles set forth in this memorandum. The independent agencies should comply with the Open Government Directive.

airupthere on June 20, 2014 at 3:18 PM

What these Congress critters need to do is have about 10 U.S. Marshals or whoever their police are standing at the side of the chamber and let these miscreants know that they will be taken directly to jail if they lie or delay the current investigation. I have had enough of this. They are lying, they know they are lying, and worst of all, they know that we know they are lying. So stop them right now.

TimothyJ on June 20, 2014 at 3:18 PM

and to top it off that sick pig koskinen is a soccer fan; figures.

t8stlikchkn on June 20, 2014 at 3:22 PM

The holes in the story gets worse….

Lois Lerner’s hard drive ‘crashed’ 10 days after House Ways & Means Chair Dave Camp made his first inquiry into the IRS abuses of power by focusing on conservative political groups….

The timing is, shall we say, suspicious.

I am disappointed that I didn’t hear any questions about the 1.1 million pages of information, including confidential / private tax information, were in violation of Federal Law, sent by Lois Lerner to the FBI in Lerner’s effort to get criminal prosecutions developed against those targeted conservative organizations.

We also know that Lerner was in communication with the IRS Commissioner CoS and Chief Counsel – and that both of them had significant contacts with the WH….and those are among the ‘missing’ emails that Koskinen promised existed in March (he knew of the hard drive crash and ‘lost’ emails in Feb) and finally admitted were a complete loss last Friday. There needed to be more questions about that timeline – and why, if the IRS was so forthcoming, did the WH know in April – and the IRS didn’t disclose until it was buried in last Friday’s doc dump.

Athos on June 20, 2014 at 3:27 PM

Scooter Libby can show this guy how to start breaking rocks in the hot sun.

RSbrewer on June 20, 2014 at 3:28 PM

We also know that Lerner was in communication with the IRS Commissioner CoS and Chief Counsel – and that both of them had significant contacts with the WH….and those are among the ‘missing’ emails that Koskinen promised existed in March (he knew of the hard drive crash and ‘lost’ emails in Feb) and finally admitted were a complete loss last Friday. There needed to be more questions about that timeline – and why, if the IRS was so forthcoming, did the WH know in April – and the IRS didn’t disclose until it was buried in last Friday’s doc dump.

Athos on June 20, 2014 at 3:27 PM

His “admission” has holes as well. I agree with another poster that the emails were full of juicy material that the IRS did not want Congress to see. You can’t selectively purge that kind of data – I’ve gone through email data and STILL found material to fire unscrupulous types.

What is interesting to note, is my company is a manufacturer – the type of private business that is on the tail end of IT as stuff rolls out. Our government gets a crack at the newer technologies before we do. Why? Because we HAVE to make a profit. IT is near the bottom of the list.

So, the IRS has Exchange 2003 or 2007 which were rolled out… which years?

And they lost data from three years ago. And they wonder why we’re suspicious?

Turtle317 on June 20, 2014 at 3:33 PM

Lastly if anyone doesn’t accept these absurd hypotheticals are facts in no need of real evidence at all, accuse them of being a communist and refer to them derisively as ‘comrade’.

verbaluce on June 20, 2014 at 3:06 PM

You never responded to my query.

Are you even a little itty bit of a smidgen suspicious about lost emails of 6 IRS employees who are under investigation (one of them having taken the 5th)?

Dude, you are one of a tiny tiny minority of people who don’t find the IRS excuse suspicious. You would be a lousy lawyer or investigator. Do you routinely get ripped off by over the phone salesmen? Are you that target audience for the Nigerian email scam? I hope you let your spouse handle the accounts.

BoxHead1 on June 20, 2014 at 3:36 PM

Just heard a news update on this hearing…it claimed that the hard drive crash was caused by “budget cuts.” I crap you not!

bigGwillie on June 20, 2014 at 3:36 PM

Take it from an IT Pro. The man being grilled by Congress today is a complete liar.

Turtle317 on June 20, 2014 at 3:18 PM

I agree – and I’ve got 28 years in IT.

Verbie is reaching Koskinen levels of prevarication, mendacity, willful cluelessness, and naivete. In other words, a mindless apparatchik ideologue.

Koskinen and the other apparatchiks all follow the same template when they testify before Congress. It’s the template that is used by every guilty person when being questioned and threatened with prosecution. They are all providing the absolute barest minimum of information, particularly verifiable information, to answer the questions posed…or if possible escape from answering the question.

Only when pressed with a very specific questions – and pressed multiple times – will they reluctantly answer. Every answer is weighed against the risk of a perjury indictment versus the risk of advancing the investigation….and given a choice, they will willfully and repeatedly commit perjury because they know they ‘protection from above’. Hence the contempt and arrogance towards their questioners.

They act like guilty parties.

If they were really innocent – all of the materials would be released, those that prove innocence highlighted, and the retribution would begin. But that’s not the case. Lerner took the 5th because she broke at least half a dozen federal laws including perjuring herself in her opening statement before she took the 5th. She knew she was protected from above and had her golden parachute.

Only a mindless ideologue would look upon an agency that operates under the principle of guilt before innocence and mindlessly dismiss the holes in their story, their obfuscations, their lies, their evasions, their obstructions, their contempt, and their arrogance. It makes their apologists as reprehensible as they are.

Athos on June 20, 2014 at 3:39 PM

Are you even a little itty bit of a smidgen suspicious about lost emails of 6 IRS employees who are under investigation (one of them having taken the 5th)?

I have a saying here in my little IT realm:

If it happens once, it’s an anomaly. 1st order of magnitude.
It if happens twice, it’s suspicious. 2nd order of magnitude.
If it happens thrice, it’s deliberate. 3rd order of magnitude.

So we have a 7th order of magnitude IT failure, and Verby says “Oh, it’s nothing.”

He’d never make it in the IT world.

Turtle317 on June 20, 2014 at 3:40 PM

IRS now LieRS

HueMoss on June 20, 2014 at 3:46 PM

He’d never make it in the IT world.

Turtle317 on June 20, 2014 at 3:40 PM

It definitely doesn’t work in security, law, accounting, academia, store clerk, janitor… or any profession that requires a hint of healthy skepticism and common sense.

BoxHead1 on June 20, 2014 at 3:50 PM

Doesn’t the House have the authority to jail people for Contempt of Congress? If so, they should use that power against Obama’s IRS.

WannabeAnglican on June 20, 2014 at 3:59 PM

Ryan is a terrible actor. He needs to take some classes. Try furrowing your brow and breathing a little harder, kid.

nottakingsides on June 20, 2014 at 4:14 PM

Hey, folks, let me explain something to you. The IRS has been engaged in lying and fraud against the American people for DECADES! And those lies and fraudulent actions have resulted in innocent persons being sent to prison for the simple purpose of denying people their right to privacy and their right to not be forced to testify against themselves on trumped up charges in federal courts. And NOW the government wants to bellow about how the IRS is lying? If it ever got out to the public just how deceitful and complicit the IRS is in its actions against the public all h3ll would turn loose.

HiJack on June 20, 2014 at 4:15 PM

“Holes” is that what we are really calling this? You could park the Titanic in that “Hole” it is go bloody big!

Exactly what is it going to take to get a special prosecutor and tell the resident at 1600 Penn he might want to god forbid, let Mrs. Biden in so she can measure for those new drapes she is going to want to hang in a few weeks…

Tilly on June 20, 2014 at 4:31 PM

Special Prosecutor.

J.B. Say on June 20, 2014 at 4:57 PM

blah, blah, blah.

(Sound of kneepads being readjusted)

blah, blah, blah.

verbaloon on June 20, 2014 at 3:06 PM

“Nobody believes you.”

Del Dolemonte on June 20, 2014 at 5:36 PM

John Hinderaker at Power Line:

…the IRS whines that it has 90,000 employees and that managing its internal documents is therefore difficult. But take a look at the IRS’s budget. In fiscal years 2012 and 2013, the IRS’s budget for “Information Services” was in excess of $1.8 billion annually! Nearly two billion dollars in “information services,” and the agency can’t keep track of emails? And that doesn’t count another $330 million, annually, for “Business Systems Modernization.”

If the IRS can’t preserve its senior managers’ email accounts on an information systems budget of $1.8 billion a year, the federal government is even more inefficient and incompetent than we thought.

Del Dolemonte on June 20, 2014 at 6:15 PM

Great fun watching all the contortions these leftists progressive pukes are going through to defend the IRS. Cause you know everyone loves them some IRS. Here’s to hoping you get anally audited! ; )

Bmore on June 20, 2014 at 8:38 PM

Oooops. Freudian slip? Should have read *annually

Bmore on June 20, 2014 at 9:16 PM

Oooops. Freudian slip? Should have read *annually

Bmore on June 20, 2014 at 9:16 PM

When it comes to the IRS, is there really a difference ?

F X Muldoon on June 21, 2014 at 12:37 PM

I just retired from IBM. I spent 15 years in Administrative jobs, 22 years in field services repairing computers. During my career, I had to research a serious problem by pulling archived information regarding a GSA contract. So I can say definitely that the IRS is spouting bu!! sh1t. Those email records are all on at least one backup server, but I would guess at least 3. No way would the IRS take a chance of losing information due to a hard drive crash.

As far as trashing the hdd drives after crash, that would be true. Standard Op. Replace hdd, rebuild from backup on server, send hdd to be destroyed. And they can totally destroy so no information can be recovered.

But email is forever, there are traces everywhere. I personally know of 2 firings based on sent or forwarded emails.

conservativegrandma on June 21, 2014 at 12:41 PM

F X Muldoon on June 21, 2014 at 12:37 PM

Excellent point! ; )

Bmore on June 21, 2014 at 6:50 PM

The greater is someone’s power, which is great in the IRS, the more they will defend themselves, because they know how devastating can be such power unleashed on the defenseless.

~ We create our own hell.

LashRambo on June 21, 2014 at 9:37 PM

As far as left and media organs are concerned: Tea Party = Falun Gong. If the left has it’s way, the Obama/IRS run healthcare politburo will be harvesting organs from Tea Partiers and selling them to each other, not unlike the current CCP treatment of Falun Gong.

bigjack on June 22, 2014 at 1:37 AM

Where is congressional subpoena of IRS CIO…? Where are IT whistleblowers within IRS…? Surely by now, some organization has posted very large reward for IT whistleblower within IRS…? The emails are there…the Chinese, Russians, NSA, Anonymous, script kiddies…someone has the goods and it’s gotta be worth millions…

bigjack on June 22, 2014 at 1:45 AM

I’m going to jump out beyond the ‘It is and/or should be’ stories. Watching the College World Series last night there was a play at 3rd where the 2nd base runner had advanced but the 3rd base runner was trapped headed for home. The base was owned by the 3rd base runner but occupied by the 2nd base runner. Both were tagged OUT at 3rd… a suicide squeeze.

I believe Ryan and Issa’s committees already know the facts they’re trying to squeeze out of the IRS perps. Who’s telling the truth? Behind closed doors? Who’s lying about what status?

Cover all the bases, line up the perps, drop the hammer… say something like around late October. A suicide squeeze.

Politics is still the best game in town…

Willys on June 22, 2014 at 11:49 AM

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