IG Reports: IRS Now Has All It Needs To Turn Over ‘Lost’ Lerner Emails

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Federal investigators now have the capability to turn over tens of thousands of once-lost Lois Lerner emails.

Last month, Deputy Treasury Inspector General Timothy Camus testified before the House Oversight Committee that it had discovered back-up tapes in a storage facility in West Virginia, which contain over 30,000 Lerner emails. He also stated that at the time, he could not turn over the emails to the committee due to a licensing issue with the company that provides the software needed to match the emails.

The Daily Caller reports that Utah Rep. Jason Chaffetz’s office confirmed Monday that the Treasury IG now has the needed software and will be able to provide all the Lerner emails discovered. Chaffetz serves as chair of the House Oversight Committee.

Camus also testified last month that his investigation indicated “there is potential criminal activity” by the IRS in its targeting of conservative groups.

“What we’re looking at is potential criminal wrongdoing. This has the looks, feel and smells of being criminal,” Chaffetz told CNN after last month’s hearing.

The emails in question cover the period from January 2009 to April 2011, a time during which Lerner served as director of the IRS’ tax exempt unit. She was placed on administrative leave in May 2013 and retired in September of that year.

IRS Commissioner John Koskinen had testified before Congress in June of 2014 that the Lerner emails were lost due to complications caused by a computer crash, and that the back-up tapes only covered a six month period.

Lerner consistently pleaded the Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination when called before Congress to testify regarding her involvement in the IRS’ targeting of conservative groups.

In May 2014, the House voted to hold Lerner in contempt of Congress.

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom

Obama Administration Ends IRS Tax Assistance Program For Poor, Disadvantaged; Gives Funds To Liberal Groups Instead

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The IRS announced it will no longer provide tax preparation assistance to low and moderate income Americans through walk-in centers throughout the United States. Instead, it will be sending millions of dollars to liberal community service groups to assist in tax preparation.

The Daily Caller reports that the IRS made the decision to end the popular program, which enjoys bi-partisan support in Congress, unilaterally, without hearings, legislation, or public comment. Congress had left funding for the program untouched.

The Tax Assistance Centers provided free face-to-face help preparing taxes with IRS employees for those earning less than $49,000 a year.

The IRS is now directing those who need help completing their taxes to do so online or to seek out those groups that the agency is funding through grants to the Volunteer Tax Assistance Program (“VITA”).

There are at least two problems with the IRS’ decision to shift funding from the agency’s own Tax Assistance Centers to the VITA program. First, an Inspector General’s review of the VITA program for the 2013 filing year revealed that half of all returns were completed incorrectly. Most of the preparers working in these centers are volunteers, not tax professionals.

Second, and more disturbing, given the IRS’ recent history of politicization against conservatives, the millions that agency is doling out are going to liberal organizations like Chicago’s Center for Economic Progress, New York’s Financial Network Consortium (founded by George Soros’ Open Society Institute), and the AARP Foundation, which received the largest grant.

The Obama Administration wants to triple funding to the VITA program. Currently, $12 million dollars is budgeted to go to community service groups to assist in tax preparation.

The Administration’s decision to close its Tax Assistance Centers comes at a time when Americans are struggling to comply with the new filing burdens created by the Obamacare health insurance mandate layered on top of one of the most complex income tax regimes in the world.

“The thing is that this is an administration that pledges itself as trying to help out ordinary Americans, to help out the little guy,” observed Ryan Ellis, the tax policy director at the conservative Americans for Tax Reform.

“I wouldn’t think they would be shutting down an office whose very focus is to help those very people,” he said.

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom

Outrage: Obama’s Executive Amnesty Okays Tax Refunds To Illegals Who Never Paid US Taxes

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As the Republican-led House squabbles with the Republican-led Senate over DHS funding to pay for President Obama’s executive amnesty orders, something the IRS commissioner just said may change the course of that legislative tussle.

The Washington Times reports that, as a result of Obama’s unilateral actions on amnesty, the Internal Revenue Service is preparing to provide “refunds” to illegal immigrants who have never paid federal income tax.

If the IRS carries out its plan to put money into the pockets of immigrants in the country illegally, that would mean that U.S. citizens — legal residents who lawfully and dutifully pay their taxes — would be funding the payouts to illegals.

According to the Times: “IRS Commissioner John Koskinen told Congress on Wednesday that even illegal immigrants who didn’t pay taxes will be able to claim back-refunds once they get Social Security numbers under President Obama’s temporary deportation amnesty.”

The Times report notes that the IRS chief claims he has never discussed with the White House the tax implications of Obama’s executive actions that many Republicans challenge as unconstitutional.

“Mr. Koskinen, testifying to the House oversight committee, said the White House never asked him or anyone else at the IRS about the potential tax effects of his amnesty policy.”

In his testimony to the committee, IRS boss Koskinen attempted to clarify remarks he had earlier made that contradicted what he told committee members on Wednesday.

Now Koskinen has made it clear that the planned issuance of Social Security numbers to non-citizens will trigger their ability to apply for so-called “back-credits.”

“Under the new program, if you get a Social Security number and you work, you’ll be eligible to apply for the Earned Income Tax Credit,” Mr. Koskinen said.

He said that would apply even “if you did not file” taxes, as long as the illegal immigrant could demonstrate having worked off-the-books during those years.

Rep. Mick Mulvaney, the South Carolina Republican who grilled Mr. Koskinen on the tax credits, said he was stunned the White House never checked with the IRS on the tax implications of its move.

“That’s just outrageous,” charged the South Carolina Republican who expressed his shock at the IRS’ position.

“This is just another example of the administration operating outside the rule of law,” fumed Rep. Mulvaney, who, according to the Washington Times article, promised to keep digging into the IRS policy that could cost American taxpayers an untold amount of money.

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom

Free Kent Hovind–What Happened To Him WILL Happen To You

Facebook/Kent Hovind

I have to be honest with you. I think about it often. Not a night goes by when I do not think about it as I craw into my warm bed beside my sweet wife of 35 years.

“Will this be the night that the black limos pull in my driveway? Is this the night that the SWAT Team goons bust down my door and haul me off to the slammer?”

I am being dead serious. I really do think about it every night because that is what they did to Dr. Kent Hovind.

Here is a fair assessment of his story.

Permit me to say right up front that I have no intention of committing suicide. I am madly in love with my wife, enjoy the time I spend with family and friends, and look forward to watching my grandchildren grow up around my feet.

To the best of my ability, I obey the laws of the nation, no matter how tyrannical I believe some of them to be, while I do my best to speak the Truth in such a way as my Savior would be honored by my life.

But my outspoken style rubs many the wrong way, especially those who hold positions in the Government. Every time I type a word on my keyboard, I wonder just who is going to be offended by what I say and across whose desk will my commentary be passed.

George Washington said, “Government is not reason, nor eloquence. It is force. And like fire, it is a dangerous servant and a fearsome master.” The IRS has ruined Dr. Kent Hovind’s life.

It is a sad time in America when we are in fear of our government. You need look no further than what Lois Lerner did with the hammer of the IRS.  We are all just one audit away from destruction.

Does anyone really understand the tax code?  Do you ever think twice when filing your tax returns as to whether or not your deductions and write-offs are in full compliance with the IRS code? How do you defend yourself from such a maize of tax law and an army of government bureaucrats?

When government reaches the point where they profit off of lawbreaking, we have reached a dangerous place. Government should be about seeking “justice,” not enforcing laws.  Today, lawbreaking is big business for the government.

Once the government finds out that they can increase their largess by “fining” citizens for code violations, we can only expect more code violations to be levied.

Prison is a place for violent, hardened criminals. It is not a place for people who simply violate codes, statutes, and ordinances. Sentencing to prison a nonviolent individual simply for breaking a “law” is inhuman. It is, in fact, a life sentence in that it destroys the perpetrator, the family, and the financial future of the family. The punishment does not fit the crime. Restitution…paying back the victim plus damages…is the solution spelled out in the Bible.

Kent Hovind is a perfect example of the tyranny of the legal system. Known lovingly as Dr. Dino because of his affinity for dinosaurs, he is one of the nation’s foremost apologists for Creation Science. The internet is full of free videos of him presenting seminars where he destroys the phony science of evolution. Just do an internet search of his name.

But this week, Dr. Dino has just completed his 99th month in Federal Prison for what the government claims was a violation of the IRS tax code. Until the Feds burst into his house in the middle of the night back in 2004, Dr. Dino traveled the country defending Biblical Creation.

Along the way, he began to warn churches of going into partnership with the government in the form of 501(c)(3) corporations.  He claimed that the church needed no such partnership because the church was already “immune” from taxation. The church, he claimed, needed no such approval from the government–and that by doing so, churches were making themselves subject to the laws, codes, and statutes of the government. They labeled him a “tax protestor.”

In many ways, Kent Hovind is a political prisoner. It was what you would expect in a communist country like South Korea.

While in jail, Dr. Hovind has led thousands to saving faith in Jesus Christ. He conducts 4 Bible studies a day for the inmates. He has written 37 books. He has been married for  40 years. He has grandchildren that he has never held.

Meanwhile, Al Sharpton is invited to the White House and hosts his own television show on MSNBC–while owing over $4.5 million in taxes.  Former Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner got off Scot-free by blaming Turbo Tax.

I could go on, but it will just make your head spin. Read up on the case HERE and HERE. Now, they want to banish Dr. Hovind to a deserted island for the rest of his life for “bank fraud” from jail. That is a locomotive coming down the railroad.  You can hear his defense in this fascinating 6 minute interview from jail:

Here is why the government is so effective at what they do. They arrest a guy like Dr Hovind and immediately label him a lawbreaker, tax-cheat, tax-protestor, and anti-government conspiracy theorist. They throw mud against the wall until something sticks, thereby scaring any Christian group or organization who might be willing to come to his aid. His legal bills mount. His ability to earn a living has been destroyed, and his effective defense of the Gospel is relegated to inside the prison walls.

I think of Dr. Hovind when I craw in bed at night. He has been away from his family for nearly 9 years. Many in the government hope he rots in jail. His sentencing judge said Kent’s activities were “worse than rape.” How do you fight city hall? How do you afford the lawyers to vindicate yourself? How do you fight against a biased judge and prosecutor?

What will I do when they come for me? What will you do when they come for you? The average tax-sentence in America is 14 months. Kent has done 99 months, and they want more of his hide. If we remain silent now, in less than a month, Dr. Hovind will be sentenced to life in  jail.

This is a fast-moving story, and it is starting to get traction in the media. The powers-that-be are trying to block the story from mainstream media. Here is a good short video that explains how you can help:

Don’t think it can’t happen to you? Speaking the Truth is dangerous business. Government is a fearsome master. FREE KENT HOVIND!!

Watch just 2 minutes of this video:

The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by WesternJournalism.com.

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom

Lois Lerner Asked Supervisor To Not Come To Office During Tea Party Scandal

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A set of newly released emails detail former IRS official Lois Lerner asking a supervisor not to visit her Cincinnati office while conservative organizations accused Lerner and her office of denying conservative organizations 501(c)(4) tax exempt status.

These emails were obtained by conservative advocacy group Judicial Watch through a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit they filed in 2013.

The following email exchange took place on April 4, 2012 between Lerner and then Tax Exempt and Government Entities (TE/GE) Division Deputy Director Joseph H. Grant. Lerner pleads with Grant – her superior – to postpone his visit.

LERNER: We just got a very extensive information request from Imraan -sure looks like op review material. I’m especially concerned that information about pipeline is being asked about.

Add to that the fact that Cincinnati is smack dab in the middle of the c4 Congressional inquiries and is about to get a request from TIGTA on all of that, this is NOT a good time to be asking them for anything or to be talking to them about issue in their work. Everyone is stressed to the max and at their wits end, so can we put this off please?

GRANT: It is a visit, not an OP review … I am also interested in the questions [Imraan Khakoo, TE/GE official] sent to them. Some answers should be readily at hand. Others certainly won’t be.

The questions just serve as a framework for a broader conversation about how things are going and what is on our respective minds.

LERNER: I get that – but timing would be bad if we have to go to Cincy now. So, I will assume we can go over this here as I get the information I’ve already asked for? Thanks.

GRANT: I think we are in agreement, but just to be sure. I am planning to go to CIncy at the end of the month. I am travelling with Nan Marks and Imraan.

LERNER: Fine with me – just trying to keep the stress level manageable in Cincinnati – they are pretty freaked. Please don’t ask them about closures, pipelines, wait time for full development cases, or the c4 application letters. I know Imraan is really interested in that stuff in general – I promise to give him info – that just wouldn’t be the best place to ask.

GRANT: Noted.

A separate report released last month by former House Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Darrell Issa, R-Calif., showed Hilary Goehausen – a tax-law specialist working under Lerner – called a specific Tea Party group applying for (c)(4) status “icky.”

I think there may be a number of ways to deny them. Let me talk to Sharon [Light] tomorrow about it and get some ideas from her as well… This sounds like a bad org. :/ … This org gives me an icky feeling.

h/t: The Daily Caller

This post originally appeared on Western Journalism – Informing And Equipping Americans Who Love Freedom