TaxProf Blog

Editor: Paul L. Caron, Dean
Pepperdine University School of Law

Friday, December 4, 2015

The IRS Scandal, Day 939

IRS Logo 2The Maddow Blog, The IRS ‘Scandal’ Is a Scandal No More:

By any fair measure, the IRS “scandal” evaporated quite a while ago. Right around the time we learned that the tax agency targeted groups on the left, right, and center over their tax-exempt status and political activities, the “controversy” that fascinated the political world for about a week in 2013 was rendered meaningless.

But with Republicans and reporters crying foul – loudly – the Justice Department launched a lengthy and thorough investigation. As the Washington Post reported, that probe is now over. ...

The investigation, which turned up nothing, cost American taxpayers roughly $20 million, leads to two broader questions.

The first is, where’s the accountability for everyone who got this story completely wrong? It was just two years ago that quite a few pundits characterized this non-story as “Obama’s Watergate,” despite the fact that President Obama had nothing to do with the story, and despite the fact that there was never any real evidence of wrongdoing.

GOP lawmakers, in particular, got a little hysterical and raised some striking allegations. The then-chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee said the controversy “started with the White House.” The then-chairman of the House Appropriations Committee insisted the IRS was guided by “the enemies list out of the White House.” The then-chairman of the House Intelligence Committee alleged, without proof, that the IRS engaged in “criminal behavior” that can be traced back to “1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.”

All of these powerful congressional Republicans were completely, demonstrably wrong, as were scores of Beltway pundits, who’ve been reluctant to acknowledge the fact this entire “scandal,” despite the hype, was a mirage from the start. ...

As for the other question, that’s simple: what happens now? According to GOP leaders on Capitol Hill, they intend to continue to focus on the IRS “scandal,” indefinitely, the findings from the Justice Department and the FBI notwithstanding.

http://taxprof.typepad.com/taxprof_blog/2015/12/the-irs-scandal-day-938-1.html

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Comments

Delusional self-serving media protecting their political class constituency. Duh.

Posted by: ruralcounsel | Dec 4, 2015 6:00:28 AM

Mr. ruralcounsel: I strongly agree. I think what we need is a select committee and a special counsel. The first and most important question to be answered is this: Who at the IRS may have been friends with Sydney Blumenthal and what is his or her connection to Hillary Clinton? This wouldn’t really cost that much. Reps. Issa and Gowdy already have the templates for the select committee. Ken Starr could probably be induced to take a leave from his deanship to serve as special counsel.

Posted by: Publius Novus | Dec 4, 2015 8:22:16 AM

The entire Democrat party is corrupt, from coast to coast, including their media wing at MSNBC. Democrats should be upset but rather they celebrate the persecution of dissidents like our friend Publius does.

Posted by: wodun | Dec 4, 2015 12:51:42 PM

Except the author let slip the fact that hundreds of conservative groups were held up while only a handful of progressive groups. This article is total propaganda.

Posted by: VoteOutIncumbents | Dec 4, 2015 2:10:39 PM