Thursday, June 06, 2013

IRS Only Reviewed Half As Many Liberal Groups! IMPEACH!

I'm going to have remember to give any right wing "scandal" story about a month before I comment on it, because as the details come out,  they all become non-scandals which make the right look worse than the left. So it is with the IRS bias scandal. First of all, the IRS reviewed applications for tax exempt status but hasn't yet denied any conservative groups. If this squelched their political speech, well, the status in question is afforded to non-political groups. They should be paying taxes anyway.

Simple searches on Google, Facebook, Twitter and other news engines point to plenty of political activities that are the essence of what the IRS looks for when deciding who gets an exemption from Uncle Sam.

The group leaders attended rallies to stop Obama administration priorities and ripped into the president’s work on health care and missile defense. They spoke openly about defeating President Barack Obama in the 2012 election. They pushed for winners in state and local election races.

Their activities might not have run afoul of the rules. But for the murky world of charitable exemptions now under heightened political scrutiny, their backgrounds underscore the gray area the IRS was in as it posed questions to the groups.

So there's that. What's more:

Non-conservative advocacy groups given special scrutiny by the IRS in or after 2010 included the Coffee Party USA, the alternative to the Tea Party movement that got a bunch of press in 2010, as well as such explicitly progressive groups as the Progressive Leadership Alliance of Nevada; Rebuild the Dream, founded by former Obama administration official Van Jones; and Progressives United Inc., which was founded by former Wisconsin senator Russ Feingold.

Also included in the special scrutiny were Progress Texas and Progress Missouri Inc.; Tie the Knot, which sells bow ties to raise money to promote same-sex marriage; and ProgressNow, which describes itself as "a year-round never-ending progressive campaign."

The targeting also rolled up centrist groups, such as the Across the Aisle Foundation -- the educational and cultural arm of No Labels, which worked to build momentum for an independent ticket for the presidency -- and politically neutral ones, such as The East Hampton Group for Good Government Inc., formed to encourage better leadership and management of the New York vacation town, and the League of Women Voters of Hawaii.

So it's great that they have spent so much time on hearings for this, because they clear the name of the IRS. But sadly, like the other hearings, Darryl Issa won't publish any conclusions. They don't look so good.

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