Newly Obtained E-Mails Show Lerner Gave Tea Party Tax Info to FEC, Big Three Networks Censor
On October 31 the Washington Examiner’s Paul Bedard reported the following: “The Internal Revenue Service shared highly confidential tax information of several Tea Party groups in the IRS scandal with the Federal Election Commission, a clear violation of federal law, according to newly obtained emails. The public watchdog group Judicial Watch told Secrets Thursday that it was former scandal boss Lois Lerner who shared the information on groups including the American Future Fund and the American Issues Project.’”
So far none of the Big Three (ABC, NBC, CBS) networks have reported the latest IRS scandal finding. In fact, they’ve stopped reporting on the IRS scandal altogether. It’s been 131 days since ABC last mentioned the IRS scandal on June 26. CBS last referenced the IRS imbroglio 102 days ago. On NBC a brief Chuck Todd reference, on the October 30 Nightly News, about the failed ObamaCare rollout being the latest in a list of struggles for the President that included “the IRS, Benghazi investigations,” ended a 125 day long drought of IRS mentions.
In that time there have been many stunning revelations that, so far, ABC, CBS and NBC have refused to report on. The following is a list of IRS scandal developments that have broken in the last couple of months:
IRS Official May Have Traded Confidential Taxpayer Info with White House, Big Three Networks Censor
On October 9 The Blaze reported the following: “Sarah Hall Ingram, the Internal Revenue Service official who used to head the office directly involved in the targeting of conservative groups, may have shared confidential taxpayer information with White House officials, according to 2012 emails uncovered by the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee. Ingram, who now heads the IRS’s Obamacare enforcement division, counseled senior White House officials on how to deal with a lawsuit from religious groups opposed to the Obamacare contraception mandate.”
Dr. Ben Carson Targeted by IRS After Prayer Breakfast with Barack Obama
On October 1 the Washington Times reported that Dr. Ben Carson revealed he had his first ever encounter with the IRS after he delivered a speech critical of public policy in front of Barack Obama at the National Prayer Breakfast back in February.
The Times’ Douglas Ernst relayed the following: “Dr. Ben S. Carson went years without ever having a run-in with the Internal Revenue Service. But his good fortune changed after his speech at the National Prayer Breakfast in February, the former Johns Hopkins neurosurgeon said Monday night at an event with business leaders and elected officials in Alabama.
Lois Lerner Retires From IRS
On September 23 the Washington Times reported the following: “Lois G. Lerner, the woman at the center of the IRS tea party targeting scandal, retired from the agency Monday morning after an internal investigation found she was guilty of ‘neglect of duties’ and was going to call for her ouster, according to congressional staff.”
IRS Still Tracked Groups, After They Were Approved
On September 19 USA Today reported the following: “Even after the IRS approved political advocacy groups for tax-exempt status, auditors in Dallas tracked those groups ‘for potential future action,’ the acting IRS commissioner said Wednesday. Daniel Werfel’s comments to a congressional subcommittee were the first acknowledgement that IRS auditors in a separate unit in another city were also involved in scrutinizing political groups. The Dallas unit tracked groups that were referred by the IRS office in Cincinnati that reviews tax-exemption applications.”
IRS Employees Were Egged on by Media Reports that Mocked the Tea Party
On September 17 the Washington Times reported the following: “IRS employees were ‘acutely’ aware in 2010 that President Obama wanted to crack down on conservative organizations and were egged into targeting tea party groups by press reports mocking the emerging movement, according to an interim report being circulated Tuesday by House investigators. The report, by staffers for Rep. Darrell E. Issa, California Republican and chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, quoted two Internal Revenue Service officials saying the tea party applications were singled out in the targeting program that has the agency under investigation because ‘they were likely to attract media attention.’”
IRS Demanded Donor Lists from Conservative Groups, Might Make Them Public
On September 17 Paul Bedard of the Washington Examiner reported the following:
“An ongoing House Ways and Means Committee probe of the IRS scandal has uncovered proof that the agency demanded donor lists almost exclusively from conservative groups and could make them public despite promises to destroy the sensitive tallies of contributors.”
IRS Documents Reveal Agency Flagged Groups for ‘Anti-Obama Rhetoric,’ Big Three Refuse to Report
On September 18 the USA Today, in a front page story, reported the following: “Newly uncovered IRS documents show the agency flagged political groups based on the content of their literature, raising concerns specifically about ‘anti-Obama rhetoric,’ inflammatory language and ‘emotional’ statements made by non-profits seeking tax-exempt status.”
Lerner’s Official IRS Scandal Storyline Undercut by Newly Released E-Mails
On September 11 the Wall Street Journal’s editorial page, in an article headlined “Lois Lerner’s Own Words,” reported the following: “In a February 2011 email, Ms. Lerner advised her staff—including then Exempt Organizations Technical Manager Michael Seto and then Rulings and Agreements director Holly Paz—that a Tea Party matter is ‘very dangerous,’ and is something ‘Counsel and [Lerner adviser] Judy Kindell need to be in on.’ Ms. Lerner adds, ‘Cincy should probably NOT have these cases.’”
E-Mails Show Lerner was Preparing for Over a Year for IRS Scandal to Be Exposed: ‘We’re Going to Get Creamed’
On the September 4 edition of Erin Burnett OutFront, CNN’s Drew Griffin reported the following: “CNN has learned the IRS had been preparing for that bomb to drop for more than a year. E-mails obtained by CNN show IRS lawyers, the commissioner and Lois Lerner herself were meeting to discuss how to respond when Congress found out with increasing sense of panic way back on March 2nd of 2012. Lerner writes, ‘we are going to get creamed.’”
— Geoffrey Dickens is Deputy Research Director at the Media Research Center. Follow Geoffrey Dickens on Twitter.