Obama’s Attempt to Mitigate IRS Scandal Should Fall Short

IRS Headquarters in DCPresident Obama tries to rebound from the IRS scandal by sacking the acting IRS Commissioner Steven T. Miller.  Not even remotely good enough.  Miller was set to leave that post next month anyway (and he isn’t departing until then anyway) so this is absolutely meaningless.  He also didn’t even become Commissioner of the IRS until after the November election;  well after the IRS started to harass conservative groups.  There is a narrative being spun that it was “two rogue” IRS employees in Cincinnati who thought up the idea in 2010.  Considering there were problems in three IRS offices I fail to see how it’s possible to contain this to just two employees.  Those at the center of the scandal claimed “they simply did what their bosses ordered.”

No this is much larger as approximately 500 conservative and Christian groups were targeted.  At the same time they were approving liberal groups.  The White House can not deny knowledge.  Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) in his weekly video address said that he was part of two formal requests from Congress last year asking for information about allegations that the IRS was targeting conservative groups.  Grassley said, “The IRS denied that there was targeting going on.”  Are we to believe the Obama administration knew nothing of those requests?

In fact according to the IRS Inspector General report Lois Lerner, who heads up the exemption section of the IRS,  was told on June 29, 2011 that groups with “Tea Party,” “Patriot” and “9/12 Project” were being singled out for additional scrutiny.  Also the IRS denied status to pro-life groups on behalf of Planned Parenthood.  We’re supposed to believe this started and ended with “two rogue employees.”

It’s much, much bigger.

MSNBC’s Chris Matthews lost the thrill up his leg.  He’s doesn’t seem to be letting President Obama off the hook, “He does run the IRS. He runs the Treasury Department. He runs the United States government, and he is accountable for it, and this is nonsensical.”

For once I agree with Chris Matthews.  It is nonsensical.  President Obama needs to be held accountable for the culture within his Administration that he has helped to create.  The investigations have just begun and this is just one piece of the scandals that are brewing within his administration.  Calling for and demanding the resignation of the IRS Commissioner who was isn’t even leaving until he already planned to go isn’t good enough – not even close.

Photo credit: DC Tim via Flickr (CC-By-SA 2.0)

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