July 10, 2015

"Wisconsin’s Friend at the IRS/Emails show a common cause in restricting political speech."

A Wall Street Journal editorial (Google some text to get your own link if that doesn't work for you). Excerpt:
Former IRS tax-exempt director Lois Lerner ran the [IRS]’s policy on conservative groups. Kevin Kennedy runs the Wisconsin Government Accountability Board (GAB) that helped prosecutors with their secret John Doe investigation of conservative groups after the 2011 and 2012 recall elections of Governor Scott Walker and state senators.

Emails we’ve seen show that between 2011 and 2013 the two were in contact on multiple occasions, sharing articles on topics including greater donor disclosure and Wisconsin’s recall elections. The emails indicate the two were also personal friends who met for dinner and kept in professional touch. “Are you available for the 25th?” Ms. Lerner wrote in January 2012. “If so, perhaps we could work two nights in a row.”...

Sources tell us that in 2012 and 2013 John Doe investigators asked the IRS to look into a conservative group that was among the primary targets of the Wisconsin Doe investigation. The IRS doesn’t appear to have followed up, but the request shows Wisconsin prosecutors saw their pursuit of independent groups as part of a common agenda with national Democrats....

35 comments:

MayBee said...

I don't understand how the Valerie Plame thing became a huge national crisis, and this IRS targeting garners almost no attention.

Hagar said...

Work?

MayBee said...

I don't understand how Gonzales got forced out of the AG office because he fired State's Attorneys, but this IRS gets almost no attention at all.

Charlie said...

If Lois Lerner was a Republican we would be hearing about this all day, every day.

paminwi said...

That sneeky Lois Lerner. Just the kind of employee Obama loves. Then she worked in cahoots with the DOJ giving them millions of pages of taxpayer returns. Think she will EVER be prosecuted?

"Issa slammed the IRS for sharing more than a million pages of confidential taxpayer information with the Justice Department ahead of the 2010 midterm election in violation of laws meant to protect such data."

http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/justice-dept.-linked-to-irs-scandal/article/2567797

Michael K said...

This is the modern Democratic Party at work. In England 100 years ago, the Anglican Church was described as "The Conservative Party at prayer." Court houses are the Democratic Party at work. "Lawfare" is another term. Unfortunately, I don;t think it will work with Iran or Putin but that's all they know.

Curious George said...

"The IRS doesn’t appear to have followed up, but the request shows Wisconsin prosecutors saw their pursuit of independent groups as part of a common agenda with national Democrats...."

Bu.., u..., but John Doe was run by Republicans!

Mark said...

No proof of misdeeds. None.

MadisonMan said...

MayBee, I think you do understand how this happens.

It's because Journalists are corrupt now (moreso than in the past).

Original Mike said...

Not at all surprising.

Todd said...

MayBee said...

I hope/beleive you are being facetious with these questions as the answers are plain to see. The cases that attract little to no media attention have "D"s at their core and stories that get all the ink are focused on "R"s. Has been that way for years.

All during the Bush years the media treated us to endless stories on how hard it was to make a living, how high gas was or how low CD rates were. Every story was spun to show how bad things were even when there were two sides (i.e. low rates on deposits means low rates on loans but only the deposits side was told).

Now that we are in the later period of an extended, poor, two term D run, all we get are "buy American", "America strong", good low loan rates, the joys of stay-cations, the benefits of part time work (more flexible), and the wonders of Obama[SCOTUS]care.

IRS scandal, what scandal! ISIS, what ISIS! emails, what emails! The video did it! The republicans were why the government can't get anything done (even when it was completely controlled by Dems). Obama has a mandate but the republicans don't.

It is the world we live in today...

Curious George said...

"Mark said...
No proof of misdeeds. None."

LOL

Headless Blogger said...

Mark, we don't need proof, we've got routers.

Seriously, no one has started an investigation yet, how can we possibly have proof? You really don't have a clue as to how it works.

Curious George said...

"Mark said...
No proof of misdeeds. None."

There is an abundance of proof of misdeeds. But your post speaks volumes to your lack of honesty, intellectual and otherwise, and dedication to the cause.

Weaponization of the IRS? Pfffft. Making a change to some "Wisconsin Idea" policy that would have zero effect on anything? OH MY GOD FUCK!

Matthew Sablan said...

All you need to know about the IRS Scandal: After the IRS was ordered to stop destroying hard drives and emails, IRS employees worked over time to continue destroying them.

If any private entity had done that, we would be on the "put the heads on the pikes" stage of the inquisition.

Matthew Sablan said...

All you need to know about the IRS Scandal: The damage that "destroyed" Lerner's hard drive was caused by a sudden impact while the machine was running. The very same sort of damage that anyone who has dropped a laptop and had their data promptly recovered is familiar with.

Lerner was warned to stop communicating about things so much by email; unfortunately, this was in one of the emails that survived.

The IRS cannot share taxpayer data with other government organizations without going through a lot of legal hoops. Doing so is a violation of that person/entities' rights, as well as a violation of due process.

Hagar said...

Worse yet, Lois lerner's crew shared taxpayer data with non-government, i.e. private, entitities.

Matthew Sablan said...

Wait, really?

To give you an idea how bad that is: Government employees can get FIRED for doing that accidentally.

SteveR said...

Mark: using the Clintonian logic

Bobber Fleck said...

I'm sure ABC/CBS/NBC/PBS/NYT/WP will be all over this, since it brings into focus the kind of government malfeasance they seek to expose. ...OK, maybe not.

Headless Blogger said...

When I first read about the IRS-DOJ-FBI targeting meetings earlier this week, I put on my tinfoil hat and wondered if GAB were somehow involved. I had no clue as how close my whackjob conspiracy theory is to reality.

Matthew Sablan said...

It probably isn't just the GAB in Wisconsin either.

Remember, for the most part, state bureaucracies are like federal bureaucracies. Life time civil servants skew heavily towards Democrats, and they actively use their positions to injure Republicans [see the variety of leaks during a Republican being in office] and protect Democrats [see the willingness to stifle IGs under Obama by life time civil servants.]

Odds are, every blue or purple state -- and possibly several red ones -- went along with whatever the IRS asked them to do.

EDH said...

Surely this is just another paranoid right-wing nightmare scenario.

garage mahal said...

The Wall Street Journal hacked the GAB email servers? LOL.

tim in vermont said...

Destruction of data under subpoena is a "misdeed."

No prosecution of misdeeds is more like it. Obama being in charge of such things, as well as being the beneficiary of these actions pretty much guarantees that there will be no prosecution.

Matthew Sablan said...

"The Wall Street Journal hacked the GAB email servers? LOL. "

-- I don't think they were hacked. This information came out as part of FOIA requests/discovery during investigations into abuses at the IRS. Thousands of documents have been handed over and are being combed through.

Original Mike said...

I wondered who'd get here first; Mark or garage? Mark "won".

Mike said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mike said...

Two oldies but goodies to remember here:

1. Article 2* of Nixon's impeachment was his attempt to get the IRS to investigate his "enemies."

2. In 2009 Obama joked about auditing his enemies and then met with Lerner and other IRS management hundreds of times in 2010-2012 period.

I'm sure it's just a coincidence.

* He has, acting personally and through his subordinates and agents, endeavoured to obtain from the Internal Revenue Service, in violation of the constitutional rights of citizens, confidential information contained in income tax returns for purposed not authorized by law, and to cause, in violation of the constitutional rights of citizens, income tax audits or other income tax investigations to be initiated or conducted in a discriminatory manner.
He misused the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Secret Service, and other executive personnel, in violation or disregard of the constitutional rights of citizens, by directing or authorizing such agencies or personnel to conduct or continue electronic surveillance or other investigations for purposes unrelated to national security, the enforcement of laws, or any other lawful function of his office; he did direct, authorize, or permit the use of information obtained thereby for purposes unrelated to national security, the enforcement of laws, or any other lawful function of his office; and he did direct the concealment of certain records made by the Federal Bureau of Investigation of electronic surveillance.

garage mahal said...

I wondered who'd get here first; Mark or garage? Mark "won".

Mark beat you by 10 minutes.

Mike said...

Mark is Garage's name. Are you guys the same person?

stan said...

The Democrat party is a criminal organization. When they control government, agencies under their control become part of the criminal group.

That sounds over the top, but the evidence keeps piling higher and higher. Perhaps some day we may actually find a Democrat somewhere with a moral conscience who will look at the mountain of evidence of criminality and be ashamed. Or perhaps not.

If one emerges, we can be certain that news media will savage him. Because they gave up any pretense of morality or ethics a long time ago.

Paco Wové said...

"Mark" (or "FUDMaster Mark", as I like to think of him) is obviously Garage's older brother, the one who went to college.

garage mahal said...

Mark" (or "FUDMaster Mark", as I like to think of him) is obviously Garage's older brother, the one who went to college.

Someone call the doctor. I'm on fire from that smoldering hot take. Very original Paco!

Manty Five said...

I wouldn't feel too inferior, Garage. They never said Mark graduated from college.