New York Times editorial, Will Speaker Paul Ryan Stand Up to the Freedom Caucus?:
The leadership of the House speaker, Paul Ryan, is about to be challenged by the latest partisan mischief from ultraconservative Republicans — a meritless and unprecedented attempt to impeach the commissioner of the Internal Revenue Service, John Koskinen. ...
To impeach the commissioner, his antagonists aim to bypass the House leadership and bring the measure directly to the floor as a privileged resolution. Such a move threatens to set a dangerous new low in congressional politicking. Should this shabby precedent be established, what sub-cabinet officials and bureaucrats might be singled out next? ...
The speaker could show some leadership by sending any such floor motion to a quick and quiet death in committee. That is exactly what the Democratic Speaker Nancy Pelosi did in 2008, when Representative Dennis Kucinich of Ohio brought a privileged resolution to the floor to impeach President George W. Bush.
But there is already speculation that Mr. Ryan, fearing the Freedom Caucus, might try to appease it with a measure of censure for the same baseless charges. This would be no less damaging to Mr. Koskinen’s reputation — or to the speaker’s. It would be another signal that Mr. Ryan remains hostage to his ultraright members.
Los Angeles Times editorial, Don't Impeach the IRS Commissioner:
[T]he bill of particulars that accompanies the resolution proves, at most, that Koskinen wasn’t as attentive to the importance of securing records sought by Congress as he should have been. It’s also clear that he misspoke when he told a congressional committee that ”every email” associated with Lois Lerner, a former IRS official responsible for tax-exempt groups, had been preserved; in fact, IRS employees in West Virginia had erased as many as 24,000 of her emails. (A Treasury Department inspector general found no evidence that the erasures were a deliberate attempt to destroy evidence.) But inaccurate or incomplete testimony isn’t the same as willfully lying to Congress.
In short, there is nothing to suggest that Koskinen is guilty of the “high crimes and misdemeanors” the Constitution cites as grounds for impeachment. And even if the House were to vote to impeach him, there is no chance that the Senate would provide the two-thirds majority necessary for a conviction.
The GOP’s ire at the apparent targeting of conservative tax-exempt groups is understandable, but that’s not the only thing motivating the Freedom Caucus. Instead, the attempt to impeach Koskinen is a political exercise that can’t be divorced from longstanding efforts by conservatives to demonize and defund the IRS. More directly, it’s tied to Republicans’ apparent determination to stop the IRS from enforcing the law barring political campaigns from masquerading as charities. If the House were to impeach the commissioner — or even censure him — the reputation of that body would suffer and members would be tempted to use the impeachment power to push other pet political causes. The only fair outcome is for the House to refer the resolution to the panel the Freedom Caucus is trying to bypass, the House Judiciary Committee. The resolution is likely to die there, as it should.
Responsible Republicans — including Speaker Paul Ryan and Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy — need to support that action and stand against this abuse of the impeachment power.
Washington Times, Impeach IRS Commissioner John Koskinen:
The House Freedom Caucus will attempt to force a vote on impeaching IRS Commissioner John Koskinen Tuesday on the House floor.
Good. The man needs to go. Or at least be held accountable. ...
What are Mr. Koskinen’s crimes?
He’s actively tried to stonewall congressional investigation into the tea-party scandal. He’s failed to comply to several congressional subpoenas. In 2014, he was asked to supply all of Ms. Lerner’s emails, but he did nothing to track or preserve such documentation. Weeks after the subpoena, IRS employees in West Virginia erased 422 backup tapes, destroying as many as 24,000 of Ms. Lerner’s emails (obstruction of justice, anyone?), despite an agency preservation order.
In congressional hearings, Mr. Koskinen withheld from Congress both the preservation order and the destruction of tapes and also failed to disclose details regarding Ms. Lerner’s destroyed hard drive.
Mr. Koskinen also assured Congress that his agency has gone to “great lengths” to retrieve Ms. Lerner’s lost emails, however, when the Treasury Department inspector general did its own search, it found 1,000 new emails in 14 days. It appeared the IRS never searched disaster backup tapes, Ms. Lerner’s BlackBerry and laptop, the email server and its backup tapes.
Then, to put salt in the wounds, Mr. Koskinen then declined to show up to his own impeachment hearing.
It’s Congresses job to be a check on the executive branch’s power, and Mr. Koskinen has repeatedly shown his disrespect for legislative branch.
Jonathan Turley, of the George Washington University Law School, said in June testimony to the House Judiciary Committee that the Koskinen controversy “falls at the very crossroads of expanding executive power, diminishing congressional authority, and the rise of the Fourth Branch,” which consists of “federal agencies that exercise increasingly unilateral and independent powers.” ...
For Congress’s job to hold the executive branch accountable, to serve as a check on its power, it must act if it doesn’t want to become irrelevant.
Wall Street Journal Law Blog, Scholars Say Impeaching IRS Commissioner Would Set Dangerous Precedent:
As House Republicans weigh impeachment proceedings against IRS commissioner John Koskinen, a group of constitutional scholars are urging lawmakers to hold back. ...
In a letter last week addressed to House Speaker Paul Ryan and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, a group of constitutional law professors say impeaching the IRS chief would set a dangerous precedent. ...
A larger group of tax scholars also said they opposed impeachment proceedings in an earlier letter to House leaders.
National Society Of Accountants Send Letter to House Leaders Opposing Koskinen Impeachment:
Leaders of the National Society of Accountants (NSA) have sent a letter to leaders of the U.S. House of Representatives opposing any resolution to impeach or censure Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Commissioner John Koskinen.
- Breitbart News, Why IRS Commissioner John Koskinen Must Be Impeached
- Leonard Burman (TaxVox), Being IRS Commissioner Shouldn't Be Mission Impossible
- BuzzFeed, Conservatives Lash Out At Leadership Over IRS Impeachment Vote
- Fox News, Republicans Submit Resolution to Impeach IRS Commissioner
- Legal Insurrection, House Freedom Caucus Submits Resolution to Impeach IRS Commissioner
- Politico, Freedom Caucus Pushes Vote to Impeach IRS Chief This Week
- Roll Call, Freedom Caucus Moves to Force Vote on Impeaching IRS Chief
- Town Hall, Republican Reps Try to Force Vote on Impeachment of IRS Commissioner
- USA Today, House Conservatives Try to Force Vote to Impeach IRS Chief
- U.S. News & World Report, House Conservatives Move to Force Impeachment Vote of IRS Chief
- Washington Examiner, Republicans Move to Impeach IRS Chief
- Washington Post, Impeachment Showdown Begins as House Conservatives Take Aim at IRS Commissioner
- Washington Times, Conservatives Begin Impeachment Process for IRS Commissioner
- The IRS Scandal, Day 1223 (Sept. 13, 2016)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 1222 (Sept. 12, 2016)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 1221 (Sept. 11, 2016)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 1220 (Sept. 10, 2016)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 1219 (Sept. 9, 2016)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 1218 (Sept. 8, 2016)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 1217 (Sept. 7, 2016)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 1216 (Sept. 6, 2016)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 1215 (Sept. 5, 2016)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 1214 (Sept. 4, 2016)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 1213 (Sept. 3, 2016)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 1212 (Sept. 2, 2016)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 1211 (Sept. 1, 2016)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 1210 (Aug. 31, 2016)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 1209 (Aug. 30, 2016)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 1208 (Aug. 29, 2016)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 1207 (Aug. 28, 2016)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 1206 (Aug. 27, 2016)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 1205 (Aug. 26, 2016)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 1204 (Aug. 25, 2016)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 1203 (Aug. 24, 2016)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 1202 (Aug. 23, 2016)
- The IRS Scandal, Day 1201 (Aug. 22, 2016)
- The IRS Scandal, Days 1101-1200 (May 14, 2016 - Aug. 21, 2016)
- The IRS Scandal, Days 1001-1100 (Feb. 4, 2016 - May 13, 2016)
- The IRS Scandal, Days 901-1000 (Oct. 27, 2015 - Feb. 3, 2016)
- The IRS Scandal, Days 801-900 (July 19, 2015 - Oct. 26, 2015)
- The IRS Scandal, Days 701-800 (April 10, 2015 - July 18, 2015)
- The IRS Scandal, Days 601-700 (Dec. 31, 2014 - April 9, 2015)
- The IRS Scandal, Days 501-600 (Sept. 22, 2014-Dec. 30, 2014)
- The IRS Scandal, Days 401-500 (June 14, 2014 - Sept. 21,2014)
- The IRS Scandal, Days 301-400 (Mar. 6, 2014 - June 13, 2014)
- The IRS Scandal, Days 201-300 (Nov. 26, 2013 - Mar. 5, 2014)
- The IRS Scandal, Days 101-200 (Aug. 18, 2013 - Nov. 25, 2013)
- The IRS Scandal, Days 1-100 (May 10, 2013 - Aug. 17, 201