Comments on: The IRS scandal: who are the saucer believers? http://overlawyered.com/2014/06/irs-scandal-now/ Chronicling the high cost of our legal system Fri, 22 May 2015 19:35:55 +0000 hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.2 By: proofreader http://overlawyered.com/2014/06/irs-scandal-now/comment-page-1/#comment-294399 Wed, 02 Jul 2014 18:44:00 +0000 http://overlawyered.com/?p=46726#comment-294399 I am genuinely surprised at your reading of the law. It has been established that sometime during the Eisenhower administration the IRS wrote regulations for investigating these groups and at that time CHANGED UNILATERALLY the wording of the law. The law says EXCLUSIVELY social organizations are eligible but the regulations say PRIMARILY. Obviously political groups that benefit from this stupefying change will ignore that information and downplay or disregard the ramifications. So the real scandal lies in the distant past which those in the present must perpetuate. I rest my case.

]]>
By: Walter Olson http://overlawyered.com/2014/06/irs-scandal-now/comment-page-1/#comment-294375 Wed, 02 Jul 2014 15:57:26 +0000 http://overlawyered.com/?p=46726#comment-294375 Proofreader keeps repeating the word “political” as if it somehow helps his argument. 501 (c)(4) groups (the ACLU and NAACP are examples) have long been permitted to engage in *some* political advocacy so long as politics does not become their primary activity. (No “political parties” are at issue here.) In recent years the IRS saw fit to grant 501(c)(4) status to groups like President Obama’s Organizing for America and Karl Rove’s Crossroads GPS, deeming them not overly political. During the targeting episode it then proceeded to sit on requests by “Patriot” groups whose main real-world activities consisted of things like reading the U.S. Constitution and discussing what the Founders would have thought about today’s issues, even if their primary focus was far less focused on electoral politics than that of OfA, Crossroads, etc. Now proofreader would have us believe that the book-discussion groups deserve whatever they get (demands for thousands of pages of documentation, the names of family members, etc.) because they cross some sort of new line. This Washington Post primer from last year may help: http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-fix/wp/2013/05/13/what-is-a-501c4-anyway/

]]>
By: Proofreader http://overlawyered.com/2014/06/irs-scandal-now/comment-page-1/#comment-294200 Tue, 01 Jul 2014 15:44:34 +0000 http://overlawyered.com/?p=46726#comment-294200 I have high regard for Walter Olson’s work but once more I have to ask — has anyone actually read the law? See my previous comments. It doesn’t matter how long they sat on requests from POLITICAL organizations seeking exemptions under that statute BECAUSE POLITICAL GROUPS WERE (expected to be) BARRED under that provision. I know that explanation runs counter to your agenda but it is what the law states. Only SOCIAL organizations were supposed to benefit, not avowed political parties.

]]>
By: Walter Olson http://overlawyered.com/2014/06/irs-scandal-now/comment-page-1/#comment-294084 Mon, 30 Jun 2014 23:55:54 +0000 http://overlawyered.com/?p=46726#comment-294084 The Saturday edition of TaxProf’s roundup contains some numbers by which we may evaluate proofreader’s claims (scroll partway down to the table). As those of us following the scandal should know, the Service tended to sit on disfavored conservative applications indefinitely rather than issue rejections, which was seen as a grievance by those groups because an actual rejection was something they could have taken to court.

]]>
By: Richard Nieporent http://overlawyered.com/2014/06/irs-scandal-now/comment-page-1/#comment-294083 Mon, 30 Jun 2014 23:50:46 +0000 http://overlawyered.com/?p=46726#comment-294083 @Proofreader,

The issue was not whether the IRS should grant Tea Party affiliated groups 501(c)(4) status. The issue was that they treated Tea Party affiliated groups differently that equivalent leftist political groups that were also seeking 501(c)(4) status. In other words they discriminated against the Tea Party groups on the basis of their politics.

]]>
By: proofreader http://overlawyered.com/2014/06/irs-scandal-now/comment-page-1/#comment-294080 Mon, 30 Jun 2014 23:38:44 +0000 http://overlawyered.com/?p=46726#comment-294080 ” that explains why Lerner only went after conservative groups”

You’re watching too many Fox News panel shows. Groups of every stripe were checked and not one – not one – Republican political group was denied an exemption, even though at least one Democrat organization was rejected. It is the duty, the obligation, the job of the IRS to investigate when people claim a reason not to pay taxes. You can’t fault them for doing what they’re being paid to do. Don’t forget that every penny tax-exempt groups save is a penny you have to pay in their stead.

]]>
By: Bumper http://overlawyered.com/2014/06/irs-scandal-now/comment-page-1/#comment-294071 Mon, 30 Jun 2014 22:36:48 +0000 http://overlawyered.com/?p=46726#comment-294071 Well, of course, that explains why Lerner only went after conservative groups. Although I do believe I read somewhere she went after one liberal group, but she later said that was a mistake because she misread their name.

]]>
By: proofreader http://overlawyered.com/2014/06/irs-scandal-now/comment-page-1/#comment-294054 Mon, 30 Jun 2014 20:13:22 +0000 http://overlawyered.com/?p=46726#comment-294054 Have any of the commenters actually read the law? As was pointed out by several Democrats during the hearing, the law says the organizations must be “EXCLUSIVELY” dedicated to social and not political activities. The IRS fifty years ago changed that word in their regulations to “PRIMARILY” and has been deciding status based on that incorrect usage since the Eisenhower administration. Under a strict rendering of the law, nNone of the political groups seeking tax-exempt status should have qualified, whether they were Republican, Democrat, Tea Party, Communist, or any other faction.

But Congressman Issa won’t delve into that aspect since it would alienate his supporters and because he wants to continue his witch hunt.

]]>
By: Richard Nieporent http://overlawyered.com/2014/06/irs-scandal-now/comment-page-1/#comment-294025 Mon, 30 Jun 2014 15:22:23 +0000 http://overlawyered.com/?p=46726#comment-294025 Gorge, the IRS IG, was manipulated to make an incorrect finding. It is Senator Hatch that should be pilloried, not fine public servants like Mr. Shulman and Ms. Lerner.

Mr. Nuesslein, that is hilarious. With a sense of humor like this you could be the next Jon Stewart. However, next time don’t forget to include the sarcasm tag. Otherwise people will think that you have totally lost your mind.

]]>
By: No Name Guy http://overlawyered.com/2014/06/irs-scandal-now/comment-page-1/#comment-294023 Mon, 30 Jun 2014 15:16:57 +0000 http://overlawyered.com/?p=46726#comment-294023 As to all the hand wringing by the left of center crowd: Recall that “your” guy or gal won’t be in power forever.

Never trust a political friend with a set of powers that you wouldn’t also allow your worst political enemy to have.

If there was lawbreaking going on here, it would behoove the left to insure it’s prosecuted fully so as to deter those from the other side from trying the same when, not if, but when they’re in power.

Then again, such concepts tend to not resonate with political hacks, no matter their leaning.

]]>