“There have been a lot of stupid conspiracies in American and world history,” said Charles Krauthammer on Special Report Monday evening. “The idea of arguing that [the White House ordering the IRS targeting] is dumb because it would have been stupid is nonsensical. It shows you how afraid they are.”
He said the only question at this point was how far up the scandal goes, and advocated giving “people like Lois Lerner immunity” so we can find out.
Video courtesy of NRO.
So far they haven’t had much luck getting people to speak: Treasury IG: No IRS employee interviewed by us would acknowledge who ordered the targeting of conservatives.
Extra scrutiny for conservative groups isn’t something that began organically among 88 different employees. We already know from a New York Times story a few weeks ago that some “manager” up the chain told them to get cracking on this. Oddly, though, the Times couldn’t nail down which manager it was. Steve Miller, in his testimony before Issa’s committee, claimed that he’d been told once before who was responsible but … had since forgot. And now we find that Treasury’s own inspector general, whose report noted that the targeting began when a specialist in the Determinations Unit “was asked” to take a closer look at conservative groups, couldn’t figure out who did the asking. Which raises two possibilities. One: Collective amnesia. Two: A whole lot of employees are intimidated by the thought of getting on the wrong side of whoever it is who ordered this, a realization that’s doubly interesting given the transcript Issa released suggesting interest among IRS officials in Washington in some of these cases at the time.
Joel Pollak, The Conversation: The Moment President Obama Invited the IRS Targeting of the Tea Party:
The answer, in a general sense (and, perhaps, a specific one, too), is President Barack Obama, who created a culture of intimidation around conservative donors and non-profits, going back to the 2008 campaign. That effort sharpened in early 2010 when President Obama did the unthinkable: humiliating the Supreme Court on national television during his State of the Union Address over their recent Citizens United ruling.
The Conversation: Citizens United Decision May Be Key Factor in IRS Scandal:
Dick Morris made the same point a few days ago when it was revealed that former IRS Commissioner Douglas Shulman had visited the White House approximately 157 times. However Morris goes a bit further, saying it’s “obvious” that Obama was personally involved:
The obvious reason is that Obama was following the IRS audits with an obsessive, personal involvement. Apparently, the Citizens United scandal so galvanized him into action and tapped so deeply into his psyche that he was determined personally to supervise the castration of the wealthy people and groups whose access to the political system was opened wide by the Court.
To see a man who held a subordinate, non-policy making position 157 times, you have to be a president on a mission.
Meanwhile, according to Drudge editor and Washington Times columnist, Joseph Curl, the scandal is about to explode because the so-called “rogue employees” in Cincinnati are sick of being scapegoated.
One source says there’s a paper trail to DC, and some who were worried from the get-go kept a paper trail. Wouldn’t say WH, but said ‘high.’
— Joseph Curl (@josephcurl) June 3, 2013