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IRS employees testify that the order to target conservative groups came from Washington D.C.

June 2, 2013

 When the IRS outed itself last month–with a planted question at a lawyers’ conference–in the scandal it is now embroiled in the agency made the claim that this was the action of a couple of rogue agents from one office in Cincinnati.

  Much like the Fast and Furious scandal that excuse was laughable on its face; the only people who believed it were people who wanted to believe it, and today on ‘State of the Union’ Darrell Issa confirmed that at least two of the lower level employees in that office testified before the Oversight Committee that the order did indeed come from Washington DC.

  The Oversight Committee has released some of the transcripts from this testimony, and here are a couple of excerpts:

Q: Okay.  Now, was there a point around this time period when [your supervisor] asked you to do a search for similar applications? 

A: Yes.

Q: To the best of your recollection, when was this request made?

A: Sometime in early March of 2010

Q: Did [your supervisor] give you any indication of the need for the search, any more context? 

A: He told me that Washington, D.C., wanted some cases.

Q: Did anyone else ever make a request that you send any cases to Washington?

A:  [Different IRS employee] wanted to have two cases that she couldn’t — Washington, D.C. wanted them, but she couldn’t find the paper.  So she requested me, through an email, to find these cases for her and to send them to Washington, D.C.

Q: When was this, what time frame?

A: I don’t recall the time frame, maybe May of 2010.


Q: But just to be clear, she told you the specific names of these applicants. 

A: Yes.

Q: And she told you that Washington, D.C. had requested these two specific applications be sent to D.C. 

A: Yes, or parts of them. 

Q: So what do you think about this, that allegation has been made, I think as you have seen in lots of press reports, that there were two rogue agents in Cincinnati that are sort of responsible for all of the issues that we have been talking about today.  What do you think about those allegations?


A:  It’s impossible.  As an agent we are controlled by many, many people.  We have to submit many, many reports.  So the chance of two agents being rogue and doing things like that could never happen.


Q: And you’ve heard, I’m sure, news reports about individuals here in Washington saying this is a problem that was originated in and contained in the Cincinnati office, and that it was the Cincinnati office that was at fault.  What is your reaction to those types of stories?


A: Well, it’s hard to answer the question because in my mind I still hear people saying we were low-level employees, so we were lower than dirt, according to people in D.C.  So, take it for what it is.  They were basically throwing us underneath the bus.

  There is much more to these transcripts, and it is pretty damning, which can be read here, but it is fairly clear at this point that somebody in Washington DC was involved in the targeting of these conservative groups.

17 Comments leave one →
  1. June 2, 2013 2:56 pm

    I’m thinking it is time to starve the beast, Steve.


  2. June 2, 2013 3:08 pm

    Reminds me of the post WWII trials at Nurenberg, where all the defendents indicated they were just following orders. Only this time the “order givers” are still alive and must be brought to justice. I suspect deals will be made to get to the bottom. And immunity given to those who will testify against superiors. This time it will not be the little guys that get tossed under the bus. I suspect many senior officials in Washington are drinking a lot of whiskey in the eveining at this point.


    • June 2, 2013 3:47 pm

      I hope you are right and I think you might be. These people were doing what they were told and while that wasn’t enough to save the Nazi’s after WWII was over the fact that this is coming to light as a fluid situation and not as a past situation may be enough to spare these lower level people. They are not going to want to take the fall for the higher ups and as long as they are not “convinced” to take the fall they will not.


  3. LD Jackson permalink
    June 2, 2013 5:29 pm

    I seriously hope the fat hits the fire on this one. The IRS needs to be starved to death, abolished, and a new system of taxation birthed in its place. It is totally ridiculous for the American people to be so bullied by their own government.


  4. June 2, 2013 7:10 pm

    We can only hope that this will bring an end to all of the nonsense with the tax code. This just might do it. Billions wasted on nonsense.


    • June 2, 2013 7:26 pm

      We can only hope! Many politicians on both sides of the aisle talk about simplifying the tax code but nothing is ever done. Perhaps this will be what finally makes them realize that real change is needed.


  5. Chris permalink
    June 2, 2013 10:34 pm

    Former IRS Schulman is married to a senior program advisor at Public Campaign whose issue is to reduce special interest money in American politics. Talk about a smoking gun!



  6. June 3, 2013 2:11 am

    I don’t know the political persuasion of those that testified, but I understand the position they were in. If you want to keep your job you do xy & z. Tough spot to be in if they had reservations. Looks like they won’t go under the bus without a fight though.


    • June 3, 2013 6:00 am

      Yeah, they didn’t have much choice I am sure so they did what they were told to do. We need to know exactly how high this goes.


      • Chris permalink
        June 3, 2013 8:09 am

        This is basically the Nuremberg Defense. “I was just following orders” Amoral workers who do not want think.


  7. william wallace permalink
    June 8, 2013 12:18 am

    As yet there being no directive from the president
    to target american conservative homes or offices
    with drone strikes / the president in having shown
    compassion mercy / unlike Pakistan as Yemen or
    Afghanistan … Where the order is KILL KILL KILL.



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