DOJ Settles Tea Party Lawsuits Against IRS, Koskinen Out

The Department of Justice (DOJ) has announced that they have settled lawsuits with 469 conservative groups targeted by Obama’s IRS to keep them from effectively participating in the 2012 election to make sure Obama was safe.  Terms and the amounts of the settlements remain unknown at this time.  The IRS admitted that the groups were singled out due to their political leanings and has issued an apology.  In related news, President Trump has announced that IRS chief Koskinen is out when his term expires about the middle of November.

The Tea Party rose to prominence in 2010 and the Obama administration wanted to make sure that they would not have the same opportunity to do the same in 2012, the year of Obama’s reelection.  The IRS used a BOLO or Be On the Look Out phrases in the names that would indicate that they were conservative groups.  Lawsuits were filed but the IRS kept losing all of their emails and when an important batch did show up, Koskinen’s IRS deleted them all and they were never read by investigators.

According to the Daily Caller:

The DOJ reached an undisclosed monetary settlement with over 400 conservative groups that had their applications for tax exempt status delayed “based solely on their viewpoint or ideology,” Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced Thursday.

“The [Internal Revenue Service]’s use of these criteria as a basis for heightened scrutiny was wrong and should never have occurred,” Sessions said in a statement Thursday. “It is improper for the IRS to single out groups for different treatment based on their names or ideological positions.”

The Trump administration reached a settlement in two separate cases, one including 41 groups and another filed by 428 plaintiffs.

The targeting scandal emerged in 2013 after the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) released a report exposing the intentional delay of tax exempt status applications filed by conservative groups. The bombshell report sparked widespread media coverage and multiple congressional investigations.

This ideologically motivated screening process applied to groups with “tea party” or “patriot” in their name and other organizations that explicitly opposed government spending.

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The IRS admitted the infractions:

“The IRS admits that its treatment of Plaintiffs during the tax-exempt determination process, including screening their applications based on their names or policy positions, subjecting those applications to heightened scrutiny and inordinate delays, and demanding some Plaintiffs’ information that TITA determined was unnecessary to the agency’s determination of their tax-exempt status, was wrong.  For such treatment, the IRS expresses its sincere apology.”

The plaintiff’s lawyer had this to say:

“The Government’s generous settlement with the Class Plaintiffs fully vindicates their claims that the IRS targeted Tea Party and conservative groups based on their viewpoint.  However, like Lois Lerner’s stated apology back in 2013, any recent so-called “apology” by the IRS has little value. That is because the Service continues to suggest that its targeting was really just ‘mismanagement.’”

This bodes badly for Democrats as nearly 500 more groups will be participating in the midterm elections with a heavy infusion of government cash to spend.  It’s not just going to be a bad year for liberal Democrats, it’s beginning to be a bad year for liberal Republicans with two RINOs — Jeff Flake of Arizona and Bob Corker of Tennessee — being forced to retire because their popularity dropped below that of your typical used car salesman.  The difference is with the used car salesman at least you get something for your money even if it’s scrap metal.

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