Friday, May 10, 2013

The IRS Targeted Tea Party Groups In 2012. Finally, An Actual Conservative Bias.

I pride myself on callin' it like it is here on While I'm a guy who more times than not sides with Democrats, I can give credit where it's due when someone on the right has an actual point.[1] So while I thought the (belated?) Tea Party movement was a group of people comically misinformed/mislead and mostly upset that the Democrats had regained the White House[2], I never disagreed with their right to voice their opinions. That, after all, is what this country is all about.

While "the movement" essentially smothered itself in the crib by electing un-electable Republican candidates, thus ensuring the party couldn't retake the Senate (or White House for that matter), there is a real, actual case of bias against them (as opposed to their usual paranoia) that just came to light.
The Internal Revenue Service is apologizing for inappropriately flagging conservative political groups for additional reviews during the 2012 election to see if they were violating their tax-exempt status.

Lois Lerner, who heads the IRS unit that oversees tax-exempt groups, said organizations that included the words "tea party" or "patriot" in their applications for tax-exempt status were singled out for additional reviews.

Lerner said the practice, initiated by low-level workers in Cincinnati, was wrong and she apologized while speaking at a conference in Washington.

Many conservative groups complained during the election that they were being harassed by the IRS. They said the agency asked them an inordinate number of questions to justify their tax-exempt status. Certain tax-exempt charitable groups can conduct political activities but it cannot be their primary activity.
I'mma keep it one hunned here: This sh*t was wrong!!!!! No, I don't agree with the Tea Party on anything, but they didn't deserve to be singled out by a Federal Government agency. I wouldn't have liked this if some low level staffers had gone after organizations with "Black" in their title, and I don't like this. An abuse of power is an abuse of power, whether or not I dislike the abused party. So props to the IRS for (publicly) admitting wrongdoing. I'm hoping the morons who pulled this little stunt were fired.

On the flipside, you already know the Conservative media narrative on this one is gonna attempt to somehow tie a few $30,000-a-year minions to the President. As if Obama didn't have more to worry about last year than trying to discriminate against a bunch of politically irrelevant fringe groups. Yes, this was abuse of government power, but just because there's a black guy you don't like in the White House doesn't mean he had any knowledge of, or any say so in the matter. #conspiracy

You and I know this small nuance is inconsequential, however. We will see this story get the fullblown Benghazi/Fast & Furious/Solyndra treatment in the coming weeks. Elected Tea Party representatives will hold hearing after hearing trying to get to the bottom of "how and why this happened and what the President knew about it". Expect to see a lot of Michelle Bachmann and Sarah Palin. Not that you missed either of them. So brace yourself.

Cause Conservatives always need a victimhood narrative. This time, niggling details aside, they've actually got a legitimate beef.

Question: Is any abuse of power wrong? Is it even remotely possible the POTUS had anything to do with this nonsense?

[1] As opposed to their typical fear mongering and conspiracy theories.

[2] I still maintain the Tea Party "movement" was faaaar more sour grapes than Fear Of A Black President.

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