Another day, another IRS scandal hits the news headlines.
Let’s go back to February 2012, shall we? Gay-rights group the Human Rights Campaign posted the National Organization for Marriage’s 2008 tax return on its website. The data also included the contact information of the group’s major donors. One name in particular draws the most spotlight on that list: none other than then-Republican presidential nominee-to-be Mitt Romney.
The information was then shared on various news sites, including the Huffington Post. As noted by IJReview, HRC’s then president, Joe Solmonese, was also the national co-chairman of Barack Obama’s reelection campaign.
Coincidence? Most likely not – and this is where the IRS comes in…
Now (more than two years later) the IRS has admitted that they leaked the confidential information intentionally. In an effort to atone for their illegal actions, they have agreed to settle the resulting lawsuit and will pay the NOM $50,000.
Via The Daily Signal:
“Congress made the disclosure of confidential tax return information a serious matter for a reason,” NOM Chairman John D. Eastman told The Daily Signal. “We’re delighted that the IRS has now been held accountable for the illegal disclosure of our list of major donors from our tax return.”
The payment is meant to supplement actual damages incurred in NOM’s response to the unlawful release of information by the IRS.
As it turns out, the confidential tax-return data was supplied to former Bain & Co. employee Matthew Meisel. Meisel then provided the information to the HRC.
Since Meisel chose to maintain his right to remain silent on the matter, NOM could not prove that the disclosure was calculated; and therefore, punitive damages could not be determined.
This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom