According to testimony on 6/3/15 before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform investigating the IRS targeting of conservative groups, the Internal Revenue Service used “hundreds of attorneys” to hide critical information from Congress. This testimony, as reported by the American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ), came from Mary Howard, IRS director of privacy, governmental liaison and disclosure division. According to Ms. Howard, the IRS “amassed hundreds of attorneys to go through the documents [requested by Congress] and redact them.” Members of Congress have long complained the documents they requested were “redacted to the point of absurdity.”
Ms. Howard also works as the head Freedom of Information Act officer for the IRS. The Washington Times reported Ms. Howard said that once the “special project team” was created and operational, she never saw requests for information. “My understanding was that it started soon after the request came from Congress and other investigators asking for documents around this whole issue.” This would point to a timeframe around the spring of 2013.
When asked about Lois Lerner’s involvement in the IRS cover up, Howard testified, “I think that Lois Lerner was the tip of the iceberg.” You might recall that Carter Hull was Lerner’s immediate superior. In his testimony a few years ago, he said it was the Chief Counsel’s office that delayed a response on 501c3 and 501c4 applications from conservative groups. The Chief Counsel’s Office was a political appointee of the Obama administration named William Wilkins.
As reported in the interim House Oversight and Government Reform Committee report, “During his transcribed interview with Committee staff, Wilkins stated ‘I don’t recall’ 80 times in full or partial response to questions. His inability or unwillingness to recollect important aspects of the misconduct—after over five months to prepare and refresh his recollection—suggests a deliberate attempt to obfuscate his role.”
Why should all these “goings on” in Washington be of concern to New Mexicans? Clearly, there has been—and is currently going on—a massive abuse of power by our government: hundreds of attorneys hiding things from Congress; failed hard drives of several high IRS officials; IRS officials refusing to testify before Congress . The new head of the IRS said nine months ago that the abuse has stopped. That is not true. The Albuquerque Tea Party requested a 501c4 status from the IRS five years and six months ago. That application still hangs in limbo.
These abuses of power should send a shiver up the spine of every American: the full power of the United States government illegally targeted against Americans. How can we trust such a government? How can YOU trust such a government?