May 22nd, 2013
10:41 AM ET
1 year ago

IRS official takes the 5th at congressional hearing

Washington (CNN) - The Internal Revenue Service official who headed the division involved in targeting conservative groups invoked her constitutional right against self-incrimination Wednesday and refused to answer questions from a congressional committee.

Lois Lerner read a statement at a House Oversight Committee hearing that declared she did nothing wrong and broke no laws before saying she would not answer any questions.

FULL STORY

Filed under: Darrell Issa • IRS
soundoff (106 Responses)
  1. Sniffit

    " i was expecting an apology from you for posting bogus information for the world to read and a thank you to me for correcting it"

    You first. By my count, you guys owe me somewhere north of 1,000. Ready? Go.

    May 22, 2013 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  2. Wake up People!

    Actually just sayin/askin, this whole thing started before President Obama was elected but it really kicked in on his first inauguration.

    Mitch McConnell told me everything I needed to know..... That and the fact that the GOP has done absolutely nothing to help turn the economy around. Actions speak louder than
    words..... And their actions scream NO!

    May 22, 2013 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  3. MYTHOUGHTS

    I wish Republican Members of Congress would work on passing a Budget with the gusto that they are putting into the 3 so called current big scandals.

    May 22, 2013 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  4. Independent

    ghostriter

    truth hurts but reality bites,

    No CEO takes the fall for an underling. Is the CEO ultimately responsible for his employees? Yes. Criminally responsible, no. Nor is a CEO expected to know everything that goes on in every nook and cranny of his company.

    Why do you think republicans are trying so hard to find a link to Obama? It's not enough that it went on in his administration. That is clear enough. And more than enough to complain about. But no....republicans have to tie this directly to Obama. Mostly because they have seen that they can't really win on the merits of their ideals and actions. Nope, they figure their only way is to discredit Obama and democrats enough to win in 2016.
    _________________________
    WRONG, you are COMPLETELY WRONG!! I work in the corporate world in compliance and the CEO, Company, all the way down to the employee is liable for ANY wrong doing each employee does!!!!! I have to take training on this each and every year to remind us that not only are we liable but the CEO and company is liable for our actions too!!!! You need to learn the LAWS before spouting off your nonsense!!!

    May 22, 2013 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  5. Rudy NYC

    just sayin' wrote:

    yes, secret. they were informed well after the massive intrusion occurred. the most used approach is to work with the ap to get the information but the justice dept. can skip that if they think informing them will endanger the investgation. problem in this case was the ap was already cooperating with them. ...
    ------------
    The AP didn't just find out within the last month. They've known that they were under a CRIMINAL investigation since last June for revealing national security secrets, which is a criminal act.

    May 22, 2013 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  6. Nameliberalrag

    Maybe I will just start denying democrats services hmmm

    May 22, 2013 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  7. Sniffit

    "I work in the corporate world in compliance and the CEO, Company, all the way down to the employee is liable for ANY wrong doing each employee does!!!!!"

    If that gross overgeneralization is the best understanding you've gleaned from those classes you're taking, then either you're not too bright or the classes are terrible. Vicarious liability, employee liability, official acts, the corporate veil, etc. etc. etc....the nuances are extensive and you just threw all of them out the window.

    May 22, 2013 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
  8. Marie MD

    @thefishrots, you want to enlighten us as to why an administration was able to lie about WMDs and get away with the deaths or thousands, including Americans and they are still walking around instead od being in jail? How about the mechanical hearted vp who shot a friend in the face then hid for 24 hours until he sobered up?
    When you fools can answer that then you can stand up and start throwing stones.
    The tea trolls are nothing but a well oiled machine conjured up by the koch brothers because a duly elected president is not like them and the haters and birthers had to unite and they have provided safe refuge for the brain dead.

    May 22, 2013 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  9. Independent

    Malory Archer

    snarkyarkie

    that so many dems on here are excusing speaks volumes, what hypocrites, what audacity they show, they don't even deserve a country like ours (used to be), people who would condone the IRS actions should be considered enemies of the state

    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    What are the dems here excusing? Example please?
    _______________________________
    THE ACTIONS OF THE IRS, wow pay attention!!

    May 22, 2013 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  10. Wilson

    The DHS appears to have finally found a use for all those bullets it’s been buying. At a Tea Party protest outside an IRS building in St. Louis yesterday there were no regular police – only armed Homeland Security guards.

    May 22, 2013 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  11. Data Driven

    @just askin,

    Mea culpa. I was wrong and got the names mixed up.

    Awaiting the mea culpas from conservatives on any number of topics. Let's start with Benghazi emails, which were mischaracterized by conservatives from the start.

    Care to address the ISSUES, instead of gotcha games and name-calling? Care to address the fact that no one has been convicted of a crime yet at IRS? Care to address the fact that Issa knew about this a year ago and chose to do nothing? I await honest replies from conservatives on these issues.

    May 22, 2013 02:42 pm at 2:42 pm |
  12. NonProfit

    thomase said:
    You don't need their approval to form a 501 (c)(4).

    That's incorrect. You don't need IRS approval to form a community activism organization. However, if you want that organization to be tax-exempt under statute 501(c)(4), then you do need IRS approval. Because the IRS tends to frown on people, or organizations, that just stop paying taxes.

    May 22, 2013 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  13. Ed1

    Rudy NYC

    just sayin' wrote:

    yes, secret. they were informed well after the massive intrusion occurred. the most used approach is to work with the ap to get the information but the justice dept. can skip that if they think informing them will endanger the investgation. problem in this case was the ap was already cooperating with them. ...
    ----
    The AP didn't just find out within the last month. They've known that they were under a CRIMINAL investigation since last June for revealing national security secrets, which is a criminal act.

    Rudy,

    If that's the case then Obama and Biden should be out of office for all the lies they have each told and leaking information that causes the families of Seal Team 6 to have to look over their backs all the time.

    May 22, 2013 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  14. Boomer in Mo

    And, NonProfit, Sen. Nelson from Florida is saying that both the law for 501(c)4 organizations and the regulations for them which apparently are about 50 years old forbid such organizations from spending any money directly on political campaigns or to benefit political candidates directly. Sounds like there are thousands upon thousands of such organizations evading paying taxes with IRS complicity. There is the real scandal.

    May 22, 2013 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  15. NonProfit

    ghostriter said:
    But no....republicans have to tie this directly to Obama. Mostly because they have seen that they can't really win on the merits of their ideals and actions. Nope, they figure their only way is to discredit Obama and democrats enough to win in 2016.

    Hmm, remember that time when pretty much all the top nations' intelligence agencies thought that Iraq had WMDs? And the CIA and NSA was putting that into White House briefings? And when Pres. Bush used that as ONE of the reasons to form an international coalition in the UN to invade Iraq? And how all the liberals took all of that and made it into, "Bush lied, people died?" Yeah, that. Glass houses, stones, throwing, you.

    May 22, 2013 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  16. Independent

    Sniffit

    "I work in the corporate world in compliance and the CEO, Company, all the way down to the employee is liable for ANY wrong doing each employee does!!!!!"

    If that gross overgeneralization is the best understanding you've gleaned from those classes you're taking, then either you're not too bright or the classes are terrible. Vicarious liability, employee liability, official acts, the corporate veil, etc. etc. etc....the nuances are extensive and you just threw all of them out the window.
    ________________________________

    What are you talking about, of course I am not going to state all the details and nuances in a blog, get real!! Fact is they ARE liable (generally speaking), and I work for a large finance corporation so the potental to break the law is great. If YOU or some or your liberal friends are too lazy to look up the laws yourself, don't come asking someone else to explain them to you!!! Looks like you are the one that is not too bright since you have to have someone else explain everything to you!!

    May 22, 2013 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  17. Rudy NYC

    Ed1 wrote:

    If that's the case then Obama and Biden should be out of office for all the lies they have each told and leaking information that causes the families of Seal Team 6 to have to look over their backs all the time.
    ----------------
    The story and info was first reported by Fox News. I rest my case.

    May 22, 2013 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  18. just askin

    Data Driven

    >Mea culpa. I was wrong and got the names mixed up.

    apology accepted.

    >Awaiting the mea culpas from conservatives on any number of topics.
    >Let's start with Benghazi emails, which were mischaracterized by conservatives from the start.

    emails have not been mischaracterized. talking points started out with facts and truth and ended up with lies after the state dept. and whitehouse had the truth removed.

    >Care to address the ISSUES, instead of gotcha games and name-calling?

    been doing it all along, where have you been?

    >Care to address the fact that no one has been convicted of a crime yet at IRS?

    are you serious? there has been no investigation yet. the story just broke less than a week ago. you certainly don't expect the obama adminstration to start prosecuting and arresting people help them out do you?

    >Care to address the fact that Issa knew about this a year ago and chose to do nothing?

    he's a representative and doesn't work for the irs, the fbi or the justice dept. what do you expect him to do? all he can do is get these people into to testify and now it turns out that the people at the irs have been lying to them and witholding information. but don't worry, because this is heading in only one direction, a special prosecutor. then you will see people going to jail.

    >I await honest replies from conservatives on these issues.

    you got them now. i hope you really read them.

    May 22, 2013 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  19. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    gee.... i was expecting an apology from you
    -------------------------------------------------
    Gee, I hope you didn't hold your breath, or perhaps by your haullcigenic ramblings you did.
    In either case kiddo, you would've gotten a thank you from me for providing me with the correct name, after all I ASKED I DID NOT STATE. But no, you blew it by (1) projecting your propensity to lie unto me and (2) being your usual classless self.
    So, stuffit skippy and thanks for nothing.

    May 22, 2013 03:24 pm at 3:24 pm |
  20. jpmichigan

    Evoking the 5th., self-incrimination, shows us someone has something to hide. If one is truthful and not at fault, one should be able to face any one. Ms. Lerner cannot , so what does that evoke. The buck stops with her, she was/is director of the department of misdeeds and now she must pay the piper, Did she forget, that with higher earning and positions, along come with it RESPONSIBLITY.

    May 22, 2013 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  21. Data Driven

    @just askin,

    I really did read your post, and I'm not convinced. Ben Rhodes' email - posted in full long after Media decided this was a scandal - revealed no evidence of orders to cover anything up. There was no "truth removed" - there were talking points that changed as intelligence grew more solid. The hearing two weeks ago revealed no evidence of a cover-up. Issa has been determined to not let Pickering testify in public. Benghazi is a whole bunch of nothing, in terms of a scandal.

    No, I don't expect arrests before the IRS investigation is complete. I was writing to the Liberal Sense person who demanded that Lerner be removed from her post before the facts were in. Generally speaking, conservatives on this blog have convicted these people in advance, and have assumed Obama's direct involvement. On zero evidence. And no consideration of the idea that "tea party" groups, as political organizations, should not be tax-exempt in the first place.

    I'm not certain what Issa can do or not do. It's an interesting question. I see no reason why he couldn't have called for an investigation into the IRS when he learned about what was going on. Perhaps a lawyer here can enlighten us; I'm willing to learn.

    May 22, 2013 04:15 pm at 4:15 pm |
  22. Malory Archer

    Independent

    What are the dems here excusing? Example please?
    _______________________________
    THE ACTIONS OF THE IRS, wow pay attention!!

    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    No they're not. Try again.

    May 22, 2013 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  23. Malory Archer

    Nameliberalrag

    Maybe I will just start denying democrats services hmmm

    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    You needn't "deny" me anything. What's the name of your business? I'll be more than happy to avoid your "services" like the plague if you tell me who you are and what you're selling.

    May 22, 2013 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  24. BinFL

    Seems to me the IRS was just doing its job. Why shouldn't they scrutinize groups that don't want to pay taxes? I'm sure they targeted not only Tea Party/Conservative groups but Liberal ones as well, however they got flooded with the Tea Party ones. Also, just because their tax filing status wasn't approved right away how does that affect the various groups from organizing? I don't see how the IRS "targeting" such groups would have had any effect on the election.This whole deal is to bring down the IRS and, in turn, Obamacare.

    May 22, 2013 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  25. BinFL

    @JustSayin – "and we as american citizens who pay her salary and expect her to do her job according to the laws of this country, demand she be removed and investigated to determine what laws she may have broken. it is called accoutability, which is a very foreign concept to liberals and democrats
    ________________________________
    The same can be said about the Repubs/Tea Partiers in the House – they aren't doing their jobs. We expect them to work on jobs and the economy, not these ridiculous witch hunts.

    May 22, 2013 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
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