An American outrage: The IRS attacks conservatives
By The Tribune-Review
Published: Friday, May 10, 2013, 8:57 p.m.
It's almost as unbelievable as the White House's story that it had nothing to do with sanitizing the talking points about last year's fatal terrorist attack in Benghazi, Libya.
In a stunning announcement on Friday, the Internal Revenue Service admitted that it “inappropriately” flagged conservative political groups for additional scrutiny during the 2012 election season to determine if they were violating their tax-exempt status.
Triggers for the extra “review” — harassment by any other name, “official oppression” by another — were the phrase “tea party” and that subversive word of subversive words — “patriot.”
But even more stunning is that Lois Lerner, the IRS official who oversees tax-exempt groups, expects the American people to believe that the program was initiated by low-level workers in Cincinnati and that no high-ranking IRS officials knew of it.
Seventy-five conservative groups were targeted. They were forced to fill out lengthy and intrusive questionnaires. Some even were asked, illegally, for a list of their donors. No tax exemptions were revoked.
This is a tad bit more than “insensitive” and “inappropriate,” as Ms. Lerner put it, ladies and gentlemen. This is government thuggery at among its worst — siccing the tax man on those with political views opposite of those in charge of the executive branch and in the middle of a presidential election year.
The IRS explanation is not to be taken at face value if to be believed at all. This outrage demands a full congressional investigation and the naming of a special prosecutor. Now.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- The Obama/Biden visit: Oh, the irony
- The Nevada standoff
- The problem with BNY Mellon: It wears blinders
- The IRS mess: Name a special prosecutor
- Vladimir the corrupt: Up the sanctions against Putin
- Pittsburgh Tuesday takes
- Alle-Kiski Tuesday Takes