GOP-led House votes to hold former IRS official in contempt
May 7th, 2014
07:19 PM ET
5 months ago

GOP-led House votes to hold former IRS official in contempt

(CNN) - Acting on a conservative battle cry and potentially triggering a court battle with the Obama administration, the Republican-led House voted Wednesday to hold former IRS official Lois Lerner in contempt of Congress for refusing to answer questions about her agency's targeting of conservative and other groups.

The 231-187 vote fell almost entirely along party lines, a decision that cut across three sharp divides: balance of power issues between the branches of government, political questions over the IRS scandal, and a Constitutional debate over Lerner's individual Fifth Amendment rights.

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Filed under: House Republicans • IRS
soundoff (24 Responses)
  1. Fred

    another phony scandal, great.

    May 7, 2014 07:31 pm at 7:31 pm |
  2. small sonkarlay

    To get what from her? Republicans like to waste our tax dollars on their stupidity

    May 7, 2014 07:40 pm at 7:40 pm |
  3. Gurgyl

    -it is clear-cut diversion from passing JOBS-BILL. Very pathetic.

    May 7, 2014 08:09 pm at 8:09 pm |
  4. Thomas

    Lois Lerner is a registered republican.

    May 7, 2014 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  5. kurt

    Let's get this out of the way.

    In congressional testimony you can take the 5th at any time. You can answer some questions, take the 5th on others, then answer some more. The reason you can do this is that unlike a criminal trial, congress can ask you about ANYTHING. In criminal trials, they can only ask you about the case.

    In a criminal trial, if you begin to testify, you can be forced to continue. Congress CANNOT do that.

    This is a stupid political ploy. There is NO legal basis in it, and it has not ever and will not ever stand up in court. Shame on every house member who voted for this. And shame on any of you who vote for any of them.

    May 7, 2014 08:54 pm at 8:54 pm |
  6. Jim B

    Why is this not your headline????? Even Obama wanted a thorough investigation. Let's get this done and done right. Lois Lerner should testify. Let's learn the truth here!

    May 7, 2014 09:02 pm at 9:02 pm |
  7. Jim B

    PS – I am shocked at the Dems who voted against this. Don't they want the truth " MAYBE THEY CAN'T HANDLE THE TRUTH!!!!!

    May 7, 2014 09:04 pm at 9:04 pm |
  8. J Anthony

    This is more wasting of time and distraction. The IRS has done its job. They are a surly bunch and don't care for polltics. They go after anyone and everyone. Corrupt political operatives posing as social welfare organizations are scum. Let's look at the root of the problem for a change:: we wouldn't need hardly any taxes or an IRS if we got smart and went back to debt-free currency, of which is our sovereign right.

    May 7, 2014 09:19 pm at 9:19 pm |
  9. What's in that Tea Anyway?

    I have finally accepted the GOP/TeaPee'rs are delusional and with a base that needs no facts or rational thought process. This group of Amurikans only hate Obama. That's the only qualification. Not one of these people even consider the possibility that if they had done anything in the past 6 years, this country would be doing a lot better. The only progress this country has seen has been at the hands of President Obama and the democratic party. The GOP/TeePeer's have done nothing but witch hunting and bozo votes for the numerous clowns holding national office

    May 7, 2014 09:25 pm at 9:25 pm |
  10. king

    the american people are so backward its pitiful, they've allowed the repubs to push fake scandals at will, and the american public is eating it up like hot peanuts, what have this country become. its like their is no more sane folks left in the repub party. IRS scandal, are you kidding me. the IRS was doing its job. if they had billions of dollars going through their system, and asking for exemption on paying taxes, of course the IRS suppose to look into it. now if the proportions of dems to repubs is not right then, they might have a case. but if 10 dem ask for tax exemption and 100 right wing teapartier ask for the same exemption, wel ifl 1 dem got harassed 10 teapartier should be harassed also. we need to find out how many tea partiers came out the wood work and form groups then ask for tax exemption when the first African american president was elected, then we need to find out the same thing on the dems side, and see if the proportion was fear. because if 100 repub sighed up and 9 was harassed and 10 dems signed up and 1 was harassed, the dems should complain because they weren't proportionately treated fairly..

    May 7, 2014 10:08 pm at 10:08 pm |
  11. smith1

    big deal! the repos are using any thing they can. fund raising off the Benghazi investigation #40 something . All of a sudden we have monica speaking out(wonder who is paying her? ) and now this. They have lost all creditability with the public wasting our time and money to try to repeal the Affordable care act holler Benghazi and just generally doing nothing to help the economy.

    May 7, 2014 10:47 pm at 10:47 pm |
  12. Chipster

    Shame on Lois Lerner for expecting her agency to actually do it's job! That's completely against the Republican Congress' policies. They haven't done their job since they've been in office. Lerner lead the IRS to actually review new organization applications to ensure that they had chosen the correct tax code for the work that they do. Of course, they reviewed conservative and liberal organizations but there was a far greater volume of new Tea Party groups. Also, there were a large number of Tea Party groups who claimed a tax code for a charitable organization but their work was actually supporting political candidates. Some liberal organization made the wrong selection too Any organization can make such a mistake. But I guess Republicans expected the IRS to continue not doing their job the way they did during the previous administration. Well, at least the Republican House is carrying on that tradition.

    May 7, 2014 11:50 pm at 11:50 pm |
  13. CALIFORNIA

    Good, it's about time. Does anyone actually think a democrat would? OF COURSE NOT.

    May 8, 2014 12:26 am at 12:26 am |
  14. America1st

    They sure love the constitution when it comes to kids shooting kids with gunds, but whoooooaaaa, the right to plead the 5th amendment? Nope. We hate the constitution now.

    May 8, 2014 02:43 am at 2:43 am |
  15. Marie MD

    There's a surprise. Never go forward. Keep going back to the same old that has been dead for months.
    The teaklans have turned our government into the joke of the world.

    May 8, 2014 06:25 am at 6:25 am |
  16. TooBad

    Too bad C NN's Eric Holder won't move the case along D:

    May 8, 2014 07:06 am at 7:06 am |
  17. Tampa Tim

    Republican witch hunts are good fund raisers. It helps people forget that elected baggers shut down the government to the tune of $24 billion, that the baggers refused to vote for helping the uninsured, refused to help the poor, voted against women's rights, voted against veterans, voted against seniors, voted against sensible background checks, but voted for anything that the billionaires wanted. Fortunately for the GOP, their base is as bright as a burned out light bulb.

    May 8, 2014 07:17 am at 7:17 am |
  18. Rudy NYC

    They have actually gone ahead and did it. They have voted to deny someone their 5th Amendment rights, which can be exercised at anytime one wishes. Despite Republican claims to the contrary, you do have the right to choose which questions that you will answer, and those that you won't. Florida Governor Rick Scott is living proof of that fact.

    May 8, 2014 08:12 am at 8:12 am |
  19. The Republican Party Is Dead To Me

    This is news? What do any of you think the republicans would do, something constructive?

    May 8, 2014 08:19 am at 8:19 am |
  20. Wake Up People! Many Rivers to cross.....

    Ooh goody!!! Benghazi, IRS, and why not throw in the old birth certificate??? IT really gets em worked up in a lather.

    What better way to show you're better for the country than they are even though your party put us in this mess in the first place and then refused to help dig us out. You got to give it to the GOP, they know exactly what buttons to push to make their illiterate poor base vote against their own best interests. They shriek and holler all the while hoping the country fails.

    May 8, 2014 08:21 am at 8:21 am |
  21. Rick McDaniel

    Time to hold those responsible for crimes in government, responsible for their actions.

    May 8, 2014 08:37 am at 8:37 am |
  22. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA - Take Back the House

    Mcarthiesm at it's finest.

    May 8, 2014 08:57 am at 8:57 am |
  23. Pete

    The republicans can't stop painting themselves in a corner can they..They've failed with Issas led committes miserably in every attempt on Benghazi,Fast,Furious ,and news leaks and again you're going back to the IRS deal that months ago left egg on Issa,his collegues faces..Don't you think its time to work for your constituents for once instead of feeding your own demented egoes...Midterms voters can't come fast enough,get out and vote straight democratic ticket and be done with these treasonistic clowns in both houses...

    May 8, 2014 09:06 am at 9:06 am |
  24. freedom

    She is not above the law – this will be another act of lawlessness by Obama if she is not indicted.

    May 8, 2014 09:15 am at 9:15 am |