|Will Attorney General Eric Holder Remove Barbara Bosserman As Head Of Investigation of IRS?|
Revelations that a Democrat political donor was appointed to head the criminal investigation into the IRS's targeting of Tea Party and Conservative groups have prompted Congressmen Darrell Issa and Jim Jordan to request that Attorney General Eric Holder remove Department of Justice Trial Attorney, Barbara Bosserman as head of that investigation.
Last November, frustrated that progress into the investigation of IRS abuses against the Tea Party and Conservatives was not progressing, the House Oversight committee subpoenaed Treasury Secretary Jack Lew for documents and communications regarding those abuses, stating that "...Secretary Lew is responsible for providing all pertinent documents Treasury has in its possession, both within and outside the IRS..."
Congressmen Issa and Jordan wanted Lew to produce nine categories of documents by June 27, and complained on that date that he had responded with only 356 pages of documents that were "..mostly letters from Member of Congress and drafts of congressional testimony..."
Lew was not forthcoming and in September the Congressmen reiterated their request, whereupon Lew provided in October, after another delay, "..an additional 800 pages of document[s], mostly draft regulations and comments to proposed regulations..."
The Congressmen again complained the documents were insufficient and subpoenaed for specific documents including:
Meanwhile the Obama Administration's "solution" to the problem of IRS abuses was to change existing regulations governing groups, such as the Tea Party and Conservative groups that had been targeted by the IRS. The IRS rule change was to set up "social welfare" organizations under Section 501(c)4 of the tax code, with the "primary" purpose of social welfare. Previously IRS regulaltions were interpreted to mean that such organizations were required to dedicate at least 51 percent of their funds on things like community beautification and education.
That did not sit well with Oversight Committee Congressmen and in late November, Chairman Issa responded:
"...This new effort by the Obama Administration to limit traditional advocacy efforts by social welfare organizations will have a much more profound impact on grassroots and community organizations than on the well-heeled groups it supposedly targets. The fact that the Administration’s new effort only applies to social welfare organizations — and not powerful unions or business groups — underscores that this is a crass political effort by the Administration to get what political advantage they can, when they can.,,The Committee’s interim report into the IRS’s targeting scandal explained how the Citizens United decision caused the IRS to handle conservative tax-exempt applicants in a distinct and unfair manner. The regulation released today continues this Administration’s unfortunate pattern of stifling constitutional free speech.”
Since then it has come to light that a Democrat donor (as in, political monetary contributions) is heading up the investigation into IRS abuses. (Tantamount to the wolf guarding the hen-house?) Expressing obvious outrage in a letter to Holder, about Barbara Bosserman heading the Justice Department's investigation of the IRS, the Congressmen reminded the Attorney General that:
"...When the IRS's misconduct became public in May 2013, you called it 'outrageous and unacceptable' and ordered a Department of Justice Investigation in coordination with the Federal Bureau of Investigation. In light of indications that the Bureau was not taking the investigation serioulsly, we have written to FBI Directro James Comey on September 6, 2013, and again on December 2, 2013, seeking information about the status of this matter...The FBI has failed to provide the requested information, and after Department officials apparently interfered, the Bureau rescinded an offer to meet with [Congressman] Mr. Jordan to discuss the investigation...As we pointed out in our most recent letter to Director Comey on December 2, 2013, the FBI's blatant lack of cooperation with the Committee may rise to the level of criminal obstruction of a congressional investigation..."
Issa and Jordan minced no words, confronting the Attorney General with new information that "raises additional questions about the integrity of the DOJ/FBI investigation." Their letter to Holder says that "[s]ince the FBI has refused to cooperate with the Committee's oversight, the Committee [has] requested information about the DOJ/FBI investigation from current and former IRS officials whom the Committee has interviewed about their respective roles in the targeting of conservative groups. According to several current and former IRS officials whom both the Committee and the Department have interviewed, Barbara Bosserman, a trial attorney in the Department's Civil Rights Division, is leading the DOJ/FBI investigation."
The letter then provides an itemized list of dollar amount donations by Bosserman to the Democratic National Committee, Obama for America, and the Obama Victory Fund, which covered a period from October of 2004 to November of 2012, totaling $6,750.00. The Congressmen then declare:
"...By selecting a significant donor to President Obama to lead an investigation into inappropriate targeting of conservative groups, the Department has created a startling conflict of interest. It is unbelievable that the Department would choose such an individual to examine the federal government's systematic targeting and harassment of organizations opposed to the President's policies. At the very least, Ms. Bosserman's involvement is highly inappropriate and has compromised the Administration's investigation of the IRS. We request that you immediately remove Ms. Bosserman from the ongoing investigation. In addition, since the aforementioned conflict of interest has tainted any information Ms. Bosserman gas gathered thus far, we request that you take all necessary steps to ensure that the DOJ/FBI criminal investigation is thorough and unbiased, including steps to remedy the damage created by Ms. Bosserman's leadership of and participation in the investigation..."
In a related statement about the letter to Holder, Issa and Jordan said:
"...It is unbelievable that the Department would choose such an individual to examine the federal government’s systematic targeting and harassment of organizations opposed to the President’s policies...At the very least, Ms. Bosserman’s involvement is highly inappropriate and has compromised the Administration’s investigation of the IRS..."
While it is definitely appropriate that the Congressmen be outraged, and that they find it unbelievable that the Justice department cannot police itself to maintain a climate of political objectivity (as opposed to political bias), and as appalling as it might be, when are the arrogant, tyrannical actions of an oppressive government enough to move the citizenry to more sanctions than the back and forth ping pong-ing of political hot potatoes? What does it take to catalyze the outrage into causative action that will hold government servants accountable for their criminal offenses?
Vanguard of Freedom Perspectives