July 12, 2013
The Next IRS Scandal?
Kim Strassel writes about the FEC's activities:
The Federal Election Campaign Act (FECA), for instance, makes it clear that staff may not commence investigations until a bipartisan majority (four members) of the commission votes that there is a "reason to believe" a violation has occurred. In theory, this provision should guard against IRS-like witch hunts.
...over the years staff have come to ignore the law, and routinely initiate their own inquiries—often on little more than accusations they find on blogs or Facebook. For a sense of how these investigations can go off the rails, consider that Lois Lerner—before serving as the center of today's IRS scandal—was the senior enforcement officer at the FEC. A Christian Coalition lawyer has testified that during a (sanctioned) FEC investigation in the 1990s—in addition to generating endless subpoenas, depositions and document requests, Ms. Lerner's staff demanded to know what Coalition members discussed at their prayer meetings and what churches they belonged to. Once staff gets rolling, there is little to stop them.
More troubling to some FEC commissioners has been the staff's unsanctioned and growing ties to the Obama Justice Department. In September 2011, Tony Herman was named FEC general counsel. Mr. Herman in early 2012 brought in Dan Petalas, a Justice prosecutor, as head of the agency's enforcement section. FECA is clear that a bipartisan majority of commissioners must vote to report unlawful conduct to law enforcement. Yet FEC staff have increasingly been sending agency content to Justice without informing the commission.
For instance, when a complaint is filed with the FEC against a political actor, the general counsel is required to write a report for the commissioners on whether there is a "reason to believe" the actor committed a violation. This report is confidential and never made public until a case is closed. Yet FEC staffers have sent these reports to Justice, in one case before the report was considered by the commissioners.
In a June memo, Mr. Herman defended staff supremacy with the astonishing argument that big decisions are best made by "non-partisan, career leadership." (No joke.) That way, the commission is shielded from "claims that it is deciding whether to assist DOJ criminal prosecutions" on the basis of "political considerations." Better, apparently, to keep the public completely in the dark.
These ties are disturbing, since the Obama campaign pioneered the tactic of demanding that Justice pursue criminal investigations of its political opponents as a means of intimidation. The FEC's info-funneling to Obama Justice raises the obvious question of whether Obama Justice wasn't in turn influencing FEC reports. (It also raises another question: If Justice had this kind of pipeline to the FEC, did it have one to the IRS?)
A story to watch.
Posted by Cassandra at July 12, 2013 06:43 AM
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"Records obtained by Judicial Watch in response to local, state and federal public records requests show that the so-called peacekeepers are part of a large and growing division within DOJ called the Community Relations Service (CRS). Though CRS purports to spot and quell racial tensions nationwide before they arise, the documents obtained by Judicial Watch show the group actively worked to foment unrest, spending thousands of taxpayer dollars on travel and hotel rooms to train protestors throughout Florida. The peacekeepers also met with officials of the Republican National Convention, scheduled for several months later in Tampa, to warn them to expect protests in connection with Martin’s [Trayvon] death."
In a sea of corruption the DOJ still manages to stand out. Trained and seasoned culprits have taken over the government. The worst part of it is there's nothing to be done about it but wait for the rubble and dust to settle. It would seem the half-life of the greatest Republic ever devised wasn't all that much. Future generations will read a mirabilary in The Age of Obama and Intended Consequences and will marvel anew at the evidence that nature, or God, or nature's God, had placed a limit on human intelligence but none on stupidity.
Posted by: George Pal at July 12, 2013 10:33 AM
As I view it, the federal bureaucrats actually altered the last presidential election by not grant 501 non-profit status to the conservative groups.
Finally! Someone is doing something. Just saw two veterans (1 Vietnam & 1 Gulf War) are doing a walk across America.
It's "Support the U.S. Constitution" & they are carrying the American flag each step fm San Diego to D.C.
They do need assistance cause they are passing out pamphlets of the U.S. Constitution to everyone they talk with. I support them.
Here's their latest TV interview
Posted by: RedRobin at July 12, 2013 10:48 AM
So what are we up to now?
DoJ (Black Panther case dismissal)
Gibson Guitar Swatting
EPA ("Crucifixion": capricious enforcement by fear)
IRS & FBI & ATF & OSHA (True the Vote)
IRS & DoL (Frank VanderSloot)
Fast and Furious
EPA (Again, fee waivers for liberal groups)
IRS (Tea Party in General)
If none of this has damages the Democratic party for decades I doubt find yet another scandal at the FEC is going to make a drop in the bucket.
If Obama was found standing over a dead naked hooker in the Lincoln bedroom while he was still holding a bloody kitchen knife it would be just another case of a Racist Republican witch hunt over a clear case of self-defense.
Posted by: Yu-Ain Gonnano at July 12, 2013 03:18 PM
Sorry, the frustration eliminated all sense of grammar there for a second.
"damaged" and "finding"
Posted by: Yu-Ain Gonnano at July 12, 2013 03:21 PM
To prove my point, the list is so long I forgot the NSA bruhaha.
Posted by: Yu-Ain Gonnano at July 12, 2013 03:24 PM
BENGHAZI and the death of our ambassador along with three other Americans.
You also forgot the firing of IG Walspin(sp) for daring to investigate Xerxes' minion and former Sacramento King Kevin Johnson.
There was another IG fired, err...*encouraged* to retire...right about then, too, but I can't remember the details about that one.
The unconstitutional Executive Orders to not enforce our immigration and DOMA laws, while suing states for their attempts codify within state law the enforcement of Federal statutes.
The appointment of the multitude of czars who only answer to Xerxes and have access to unlimited funds.
There are more, those are just off the top of my head. Like the sign at one of the Tea Party protests said, "Will someone please give Obama a blow job so we can impeach him!"
Posted by: DL Sly at July 12, 2013 04:15 PM
Sh17! You really do need a scorecard for this crap.
Btw, I'm only a little miffed at the whole "Czar" thing as they're just delegated positions within the Executive's scope. They aren't doing anything that POTUS couldn't do himself, it's just a manner of shifting accountability (gives you someone to throw under the bus that ain't yourself).
Posted by: Yu-Ain Gonnano at July 12, 2013 05:13 PM
Posted by: CAPT Mike at July 12, 2013 11:10 PM
Another scary story. Unfortunately, just another scary story. They come nearly daily now, but never a story about a prosecution, a firing, or any correction of the problems pointed out. I'm not sure this Constitutional government can remain a government of, by and for the people until another election gives us the chance to change it. How much executive over-reach can we stand before we have lost our ability to insure that the government is the servant instead of the master of it's citizens?
Posted by: DaveJ at July 15, 2013 03:08 AM