Archive for June, 2014

The Pronk Pops Show 288, June 30, 2014, Story 1: American People To Obama and Professional Elitist Establishment (PEEs) — Enforce Immigration Laws (Deport All Illegal Aliens and Fine All Businesses That Employ Them) or Be Voted Out of Office — All 30-50 Million Illegal Aliens in U.S.A. Including Their Children Should Be Deported To Their Country of Origin — That Is The Law — Videos

Posted on June 30, 2014. Filed under: American History, Banking System, Blogroll, Budgetary Policy, Communications, Constitutional Law, Crime, Economics, Education, Employment, European History, Federal Government, Fiscal Policy, Foreign Policy, Gangs, Government, Government Spending, History, Illegal Immigration, Illegal Immigration, Immigration, Labor Economics, Law, Legal Immigration, Media, Monetary Policy, Obama, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Public Sector Unions, Regulation, Resources, Scandals, Security, Social Science, Success, Tax Policy, Taxes, Terror, Terrorism, Unemployment, Unions, United States Constitution, Videos, Violence, War, Wealth, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

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The Pronk Pops Show Podcasts

Pronk Pops Show 288: June 30, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 287: June 27, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 286: June 26, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 285 June 25, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 284: June 23, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 283: June 20, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 282: June 19, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 281: June 17, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 280: June 16, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 279: June 13, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 278: June 12, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 277: June 11, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 276: June 10, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 275: June 9, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 274: June 6, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 273: June 5, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 272: June 4, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 271: June 2, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 270: May 30, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 269: May 29, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 268: May 28, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 267: May 27, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 266: May 23, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 265: May 22, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 264: May 21, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 263: May 20, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 262: May 16, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 261: May 15, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 260: May 14, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 259: May 13, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 258: May 9, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 257: May 8, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 256: May 5, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 255: May 2, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 254: May 1, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 253: April 30, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 252: April 29, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 251: April 28, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 250: April 25, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 249: April 24, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 248: April 22, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 247: April 21, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 246: April 17, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 245: April 16, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 244: April 15, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 243: April 14, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 242: April 11, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 241: April 10, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 240: April 9, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 239: April 8, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 238: April 7, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 237: April 4, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 236: April 3, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 235: March 31, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 234: March 28, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 233: March 27, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 232: March 26, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 231: March 25, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 230: March 24, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 229: March 21, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 228: March 20, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 227: March 19, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 226: March 18, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 225: March 17, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 224: March 7, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 223: March 6, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 222: March 3, 2014

Story 1: American People To Obama and Professional Elitist Establishment (PEEs) — Enforce Immigration Laws (Deport All Illegal Aliens and Fine All Businesses That Employ Them) or Be Voted Out of Office — All 30-50 Million Illegal Aliens in U.S.A. Including Their Children Should Be Deported To Their Country of Origin — That Is The Law — Videos

Article IV, Section 4 of the U.S. Constitution

The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a Republican Form of Government, and shall protect each of them against invasion; and on Application of the Legislature, or of the Executive (when the Legislature cannot be convened) against domestic Violence.”

FT_14.06.06_UnaccompaniedChildren

Screen_Shot_2014-06-16_at_10.11.53_AM

DACA_numbers

Immigration-Annual-USA

leagal immigration

Immigration-Bush-Obama

03_personnel02_citizensFigure_3-_Border_Patrol_apprehensions,_DHS_returns_FY_2002-2011

01_apprehensions

BorderApprehensions2010

Picture-20

political-cartoon_on_immigration-tsunami-statue-of-liberty

Immigration by the Numbers — Off the Charts

Immigration, World Poverty and Gumballs – Updated 2010

Pres. Obama to ask for $2 billion to cope with surge of immigrants into U.S.

White House Creating An Immigration Crisis

Republicans Blame Obama for Surge of Child Immigrants

News Wrap: U.S. sends agents to handle child migrant crisis

Children Crossing the U.S. Border Maxed Out at Double Capacity!

Obama Triggers a Massive Surge of Illegal Immigrant Children(90,000!)

Will Immigration: Over Ingraham Pushing Laura Elites George GOP Reform Immigration Battles

America is not a dumping ground – HEATED Debate over Illegal immigrant children

Reporters Confront U.S. Border Patrol Over Illegal Immigration Stand-Down

‘Deliberate Plan by Obama’ to Collapse U.S. Law Enforcement System

Sen. Flake Presses DHS Secretary on Lax Enforcement of Immigration Law

Jessica Vaughan’s Hearing Testimony on “Enforcement of Laws against Illegal Immigration” (2/5/13)

Glenn Beck: Illegal Immigration

O’Reilly Factor: Record number of minors entering the US illegally Laura Ingraham reacts

Illegal Immigration Report by Bear Sterns

How Many Illegal Aliens Are in the US? – Walsh – 1

How Many Illegal Aliens Are in the US? – Walsh – 2

How Many Illegal Aliens Are in the US? – Diana Hull, part 1

How Many Illegal Aliens Are in the US? – Diana Hull, part 2

The 1986 Amnesty Debate Revisited

1984 – Ronald Reagan on Amnesty

Reagan on immigration 2

The Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986

Stop Amnesty for Illegal Immigrants – Expert Reveals the True Cost of Amnesty

President Obama Speaks on Department of Homeland Security Immigration Announcement

DREAM Act: Obama Signs Executive Order on Immigration

Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) – Official USCIS Video

Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)

Operation Wetback 1954

Neil Diamond Coming To America

 

Illegal immigrant population of the United States

 

The actual size and the origin of the illegal immigrant population in the United States is uncertain and difficult to ascertain because of difficulty in accurately counting individuals in this population. National surveys, administrative data and other sources of information provide inaccurate measures of the size of the illegal immigrant population and current estimates based on these data indicate that the current population may range from 7 million to 20 million.

In summary, an estimated 11.5 million unauthorized immigrants were living in US in January 2000 through January 2011.[1] This is a decline from the historic peak of 12.5 million seen in 2007.[2]

 

Size

Residual method

The “residual method” is widely used to estimate the unauthorized immigrant population of the USA. With this method, the known number of legal immigrants to the United States is subtracted from the reported U.S. Census number of self-proclaimed foreign born people to obtain the total, unauthorized immigrant (residual) population.[3] This methodology is used by the US Department of Homeland Security,[4] the Pew Hispanic Center, the US Census Bureau and others. Since unauthorized immigrants have many reasons for not answering the U.S. Census correctly and since there are no penalties for answering the U.S. Census incorrectly, a direct subtraction is a well-known source of undercount error and has to be corrected. All known users of this methodology correct the foreign born population (about 35–50 million) by 10–40% (3–12 million) to account for this undercount effect. Critics claim this correction is in error no matter which size correction is used.

Using the residual methodology with a minimal 10% foreign born undercount correction (reason for correction size unstated) for the 2000 census, a 700,000 net undocumented immigrant increase/year assumption and data from the March 2004 Current Population Survey, Pew estimated that there were 10.3 million unauthorized immigrants in the USA in 2004. Assuming the same rate of growth, Pew projected this population reached at least 11 million as of March 2005.

The Pew Hispanic Center estimates that, in the 1980s, the net advance of the U.S. undocumented population was at 130,000 per year, increasing to 450,000 per year from 1990–1994, further increasing to 750,000 per year from 1995–1999, and staying at 700,000–850,000+ per year since about 2000. Unauthorized Mexican immigration amounts to about 500,000 per year of this influx since about 1999. According to the same Pew Hispanic Center study as of March 2005, the undocumented U.S. population had reached 11 million or more, including more than 6.5 million undocumented Mexicans, which is around 60% of all unauthorized immigrants. Assuming the same rate of growth as in recent years gives around 12 million undocumented immigrants in the United States as of January 2006, increasing at 700,000–850,000 per year – with undocumented Mexicans amounting to about 60%+ (7+ million) of the overall total by 2006. By September 2006, the undocumented U.S. population was thought to be around 13 million. About one-sixth of the undocumented population – about 2.0 million people – is under 18 years of age.[5]

After 2000, the estimation of the growth of the U.S. undocumented population becomes more difficult because of a lack of good information. The rate of growth of the U.S. undocumented population is estimated with the Consumer Price Survey data from 2004, which suffers from the same under counting problems of the U.S. Census plus the problem of a much smaller statistical sample used (only 10,000–20,000). Its accuracy may well be suspect due to the lack of a truly representative, “random” sample and due to the well-known, non-random distribution of the U.S. undocumented immigrant population. Again, using these techniques, Pew comes up with around 12+ million U.S. unauthorized immigrants in January 2006 (with an estimated growth rate of 700,000–850,000 net unauthorized immigrants per year), and this is the “consensus” number used by most reporters. The unstated cumulative error in total U.S. unauthorized immigrants by 2006 could easily be an additional 8 million unauthorized immigrants or more, and the error in the growth rate since 2000 could also be very large but again is unstated by Pew and others. There is a high probability of the U.S. unauthorized immigrant population’s size in 2006 being significantly larger than the 12 million predicted as all additional information points to a significant increase (300+%) in the advance rate of unauthorized immigrants after 2000, not a reduction as initially predicted by Pew.[citation needed]

Investigative journalists Donald L. Barlett and James B. Steele estimated in Time magazine (in its September 12, 2004 issue) that the number of unauthorized immigrants entering into the USA that year would total 3 million – enough to fill 22,000 Boeing 737-700 airliners or 60 flights every day for a year.[6]

In 2006, legal immigrants to the United States numbered approximately 1,000,000 per year – of which about 600,000 were Change of Status immigrants who were already in the USA. Legal immigrants to the United States are now at their highest level ever at over 35,000,000. Net advances by unauthorized immigrants into the USA have also soared from about 130,000 per year in the 1970s, to 300,000+ per year in the 1980s, to over 500,000 per year in the 1990s, to over 700,000 per year in the 2000s. Total entrance by unauthorized immigrants into the USA may have been as high as 1,500,000 per year in 2006 – with a net of at least 700,000 more unauthorized immigrants arriving each year to join the 12,000,000 to 20,000,000 that are already here in the USA. (Pew Hispanic Data Estimates [1][7]

Mexican Remittances and Illegal Population Growth

Year * Remittances
Billions
Remittances
% Increase
per year
Illegal **
Mexicans
Millions
Illegal
Increase
thous./yr
Pew ***
est.
thous./yr

1995 3.673 3.000
1996 4.224 15.0% 3.450 450 400
1997 4.865 15.2% 3.974 524 400
1998 4.744 -2.5% 3.875 -99 400
1999 5.910 24.6% 4.827 952 400
2000 6.573 11.2% 5.369 542 500
2001 8.895 35.3% 7.265 1,897 500
2002 9.814 10.3% 8.016 751 500
2003 13.396 36.5% 10.941 2,926 500
2004 16.613 24.0% 13.569 2,628 500
2005 20.035 20.6% 16.364 2,795 500
Non-Mex. 4.0 to 6.0

Total illegal aliens estimated by Bear Stearns 20.0 to 22.0 million**

Assumes the amount of remittances from the USA is proportional to the number of Mexicans living in the USA.
As can be seen the Pew and Bear Stern numbers are in basic agreement until around the year 2000.
Total remittances in 2005 were around $20 billion.
Sources:
* Banco de Mexico [2]
** Bear Stern’s investigators [3]
*** Pew data [4]

Remittances to Mexico

Bear Stearns‘ investigators [8] came up with another way to attack this very difficult problem. They made the assumption that the amount of remittances(money sent back to Mexico) is directly proportional to the number of Mexican immigrants in the United States. Other data used for their estimates are the increases of households and school enrollment in Mexican immigrant communities. They conclude that the number of illegal immigrants in the United States may well be twice the official number put out by the U.S. Census of 9 million and may be 20 million people or higher. Information fromThe Mexican Central Bank details the remittances and shows their growth.[9]

According to that data, remittances stayed fairly stable until 2000 when a steady and dramatic increase began. The change in remittances between 1997 and 1999 is most likely a problem in accounting – the three year average is still about 450 thousand/year consistent with other data. The agreement with the Pew estimate is reasonably good up to 2001 where there is a significant difference – just where the Pew and Census data becomes harder to extrapolate because of lack of good data. Using this technique Bear Sterns investigators come up with a possible illegal population of 20 million or greater. (See figure for calculation) Other data confirming their estimates are the dramatic increases of households and school enrollment in Mexican immigrant communities (read their report for more details). Border Arrest data do not show this dramatic increase in apprehensions.

Critics of this estimate like Jeffrey Passel claim a probable over count by Bear Stearns due to a failure to separate remittances from working class immigrants from funds transfers for real estate purchases and improvement by the affluent.[citation needed] The data used in this section is “Remittances INTO Mexico” and does not accurately represent “Remittances FROM the USA INTO Mexico” as the article would suggest, rather in is the total “Remittances INTO Mexico from ALL other countries”.[citation needed]

Impact of the global financial crisis of 2008–2009

The global financial crisis has had a large impact on America. The construction sector and other areas illegal immigrants traditionally seek employment in have shrunk. The recession has also led to a surplus of American labor driving down the benefit of hiring illegal immigrants. It is estimated that over a million illegal immigrants have returned to Mexico since the beginning of the crisis.[10]

Origins

According to a Pew Hispanic Center report, Mexicans make up 57 percent of immigrants present in the United States illegally. Another 24 percent are from otherLatin American countries. Approximately 9 percent are from Asia, 6 percent from Europe and Canada, with the remaining 4 percent from the rest of the world.[11]

Country of Origin (January 2006)

Mexico 6,840,000 57%
Latin & Central Amer. 3,000,000 24%
Asia 1,080,000 9%
Europe + Canada 720,000 6%
Rest of World 480,000 4%

The number of Mexican legal immigrants and Mexican illegal immigrants in the United States has grown quite rapidly over the past 35 years, increasing almost 15-fold from about 760,000 in the 1970 Census to more than 11 million in 2004–an average annual growth rate of more than 8 percent, maintained over more than 3 decades. This remarkable growth has been largely driven by the encroachment of illegal immigrants. On average the net Mexican population living in the United States has grown by at least a half million people a year over the past decade. About 80 to 85 percent of the immigration from Mexico and Central America in recent years has been illegal.[12]

References[edit]

  1. Jump up^ http://www.dhs.gov/xlibrary/assets/statistics/publications/ois_ill_pe_2011.pdf
  2. Jump up^ Preston, Julia (July 31, 2008). “Decline Seen in Numbers of People Here Illegally”The New York Times. Retrieved May 5, 2010.
  3. Jump up^ Jeffrey S. Passel (June 2005). “Unauthorized Migrants: Numbers and Characteristics”. Pew Hispanic Center. p. 7.
  4. Jump up^ MICHAEL HOEFER; CHRISTOPHER CAMPBELL; NANCY RYTINA (January 2005). “Estimates of the Unauthorized Immigrant Population Residing in the United States: May 2006”. US Department of Homeland Security, Office of Immigration Statistics, Policy Directorate.
  5. Jump up^ Jeffrey S. Passel (March 21, 2005). “Estimates of the Size and Characteristics of the Undocumented Population”. Pew Hispanic Center.
  6. Jump up^ DONALD L. BARLETT; JAMES B. STEELE (September 20, 2004). “Who Left the Door Open?”Time. p. 5.
  7. Jump up^ Steven Malanga (Summer 2006). “How Unskilled Immigrants Hurt Our Economy”.
  8. Jump up^ [dead link]
  9. Jump up^ “CPSS-WB General Principles for International Remittances Services: The Point of View of Authorities: Banco de México”. The World Bank. May 2006.
  10. Jump up^ Preston, Julia (July 31, 2008). “Decline Seen in Numbers of People Here Illegally”The New York Times. Retrieved May 5, 2010.
  11. Jump up^ Jeffrey S. Passel: Estimates of the Size and Characteristics of the Undocumented Population Pew Hispanic Center, Report March 21, 2005
  12. Jump up^ Jeffrey S. Passel: Estimates of the Size and Characteristics of the Undocumented Population Pew Hispanic Center, Report March 21, 2005, page 2 and figure 4

External links[edit]

  • [5] Estimates of the Size and Characteristics of the Undocumented Population
  • [6] A Description of the Immigrant Population
  • [7] Labor Participation less than High School
  • [8] Economy Slowed, But Immigration Didn’t
  • [9] Immigration Enforcement Actions: 2004
  • [10] The Labor Force Status of Short-Term Unauthorized Workers
  • [11] Labor Statistics
  • [12] Unauthorized Immigrant Population National and State Trends

Nearly 20 million illegal immigrants in U.S., former Border Patrol agents say

By Stephen Dinan

The number of illegal immigrants in the U.S. is actually closer to 20 million, according to former Border Patrol agents who issued a letter this weekend disputing the count of 11 million that the government and most top private demographers use.

“The more likely figure is 18-20 million and rising daily,” Zack Taylor, chairman of the National Association of Former Border Patrol Officers, Inc., said in an open letter dated Sunday.

NAFBPO opposes the Senate bill that would grant legal status to illegal immigrants, with the organization arguing that current immigration laws aren’t broken and should be enforced.

They also argue that the lesson from the 1986 amnesty is that more people end up getting benefits than the government initially projects.

“To even contemplate another amnesty without verification of this basic information is malfeasance in governance and fraud on its face,” Mr. Taylor said.

Demographers say the number of illegal immigrants peaked at 12.4 million in 2007 before beginning to drop, and has now leveled off at slightly more than 11 million. The most recent Homeland Security Department estimate dates back to January 2011 and put the population at 11.5 million.

But some other studies have challenged those estimates, including a 2005 Bear Stearns report that estimated the number could be as high as 20 million.
http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2013/sep/9/nearly-20m-illegal-immigrants-us-ex-border-patrol/

 

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The Pronk Pops Show 287, June 27, 2014, Story 1: The Great Swap: 30-50 Million Illegal Aliens Get Citizenship in Exchange for 30-50 Million American Solid Liberals/Progressives Not Proud To Be Americans Renouncing Their Citizenship and Leaving America — The Fair Deal — Videos

Posted on June 27, 2014. Filed under: American History, Banking System, Blogroll, Budgetary Policy, Business, College, Communications, Constitutional Law, Economics, Education, Employment, Energy, Federal Government, Fiscal Policy, Foreign Policy, Gangs, Government, Government Dependency, Government Spending, Health Care, Health Care Insurance, History, Illegal Immigration, Illegal Immigration, Immigration, IRS, Labor Economics, Law, Media, Monetary Policy, Obama, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Polls, Radio, Regulation, Religion, Resources, Scandals, Security, Social Science, Success, Tax Policy, Taxes, Technology, Terror, Terrorism, Transportation, United States Constitution, Videos, Violence, War, Wealth, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Project_1

The Pronk Pops Show Podcasts

Pronk Pops Show 287: June 27, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 286: June 26, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 285 June 25, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 284: June 23, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 283: June 20, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 282: June 19, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 281: June 17, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 280: June 16, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 279: June 13, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 278: June 12, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 277: June 11, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 276: June 10, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 275: June 9, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 274: June 6, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 273: June 5, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 272: June 4, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 271: June 2, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 270: May 30, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 269: May 29, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 268: May 28, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 267: May 27, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 266: May 23, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 265: May 22, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 264: May 21, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 263: May 20, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 262: May 16, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 261: May 15, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 260: May 14, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 259: May 13, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 258: May 9, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 257: May 8, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 256: May 5, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 255: May 2, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 254: May 1, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 253: April 30, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 252: April 29, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 251: April 28, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 250: April 25, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 249: April 24, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 248: April 22, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 247: April 21, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 246: April 17, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 245: April 16, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 244: April 15, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 243: April 14, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 242: April 11, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 241: April 10, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 240: April 9, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 239: April 8, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 238: April 7, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 237: April 4, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 236: April 3, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 235: March 31, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 234: March 28, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 233: March 27, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 232: March 26, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 231: March 25, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 230: March 24, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 229: March 21, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 228: March 20, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 227: March 19, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 226: March 18, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 225: March 17, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 224: March 7, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 223: March 6, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 222: March 3, 2014

Story 1: The Great Swap: 30-50 Million Illegal Aliens Get Citizenship in Exchange for 30-50 Million American Liberals/Progressives Not Proud To Be Americans Renouncing Their Citizenship and Leaving America — The Fair Deal — Videos

ProudAmerican

fair_deal

God Bless the U.S.A. by Lee Greenwood

Pew study finds Americans more polarized than ever

A major study by the Pew Research Center finds the increasing polarization in the U.S. is not just in our politics. American adults are less likely to compromise and often decide where to live, who to marry and who their friends should be based on what they already believe. Michael Dimock of the Pew Research Center and Amy Walter of The Cook Political Report join Gwen Ifill to assess the data.

The Five’s Gutfeld: ‘Hating Your Country? That’s Cool for a Liberal’

O’Reilly: ‘Corrupt’ Liberal Media Is ‘Subverting American Democracy’

Immigration by the Numbers — Off the Charts

A startling look at how U.S. immigration will add 300 million people to the country this century if immigration policies are not changed. This dramatic presentation of the latest Census data raises serious immigration questions about the ability of the country to achieve environmental sustainability and to meet the quality-of-life infrastructure needs of the national community considering current immigration policy.

Presented by immigration author/journalist Roy Beck

Learn More http://www.NumbersUSA.org

Immigration, World Poverty and Gumballs – Updated 2010

Immigration – Global humanitarian reasons for current U.S. immigration are tested in this updated version of immigration author and journalist Roy Beck’s colorful presentation of data from the World Bank and U.S. Census Bureau. The 1996 version of this immigration gumballs presentation has been one of the most viewed immigration policy presentations on the internet.

Presented by immigration author/journalist Roy Beck

Learn More http://www.NumbersUSA.org

obama stops deporting dreamers

President Obama: Do Not Send Your Children To The Borders. Obama ABC News

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Glenn Beck: Help, Donate To Immigrant Children On The Border

Mexican Chopper Crosses Into AZ, Fires on U.S. Border Patrol Agents

Mexican Military Chopper Crosses Into US, Shoots At Border Agents June 27, 2014

Mexican troops cross into the U.S. Mexico border – “Clear violation of International Law”

Mexican incursions into US territory

 

33,000 Children Flood the U.S. Border

Border patrol overrun in Texas More than 50,000 immigrant children apprehended – LoneWolf Sager

Residents, border patrol union react to images of immigrant children in border facilities

Lawyers turned away from facility holding kids

Rep. Henry Cuellar Tours Border Patrol Facility in McAllen

U.S. Border Patrol Paying To Ship Illegals Deep Into U.S.

Unaccompanied migrant children held at border patrol facility

ILLEGALS BRINGING DISEASES ACROSS BORDER

Inside the facility holding immigrant children on the US border”

Feds struggling to house undocumented children crossing the border

Living on US-Mexico Border, Native Americans Face Daily Struggles

I’m Proud To Be An American

 

Border crisis: With immigration reform ‘dead,’ will Obama act alone?

With tens of thousands of undocumented children surging over America’s southern border, the Obama administration is mulling over whether to take executive action to ease the crisis.

By Patrik Jonsson

As a seemingly unending phalanx of women and children continues to try to cross into the US from Central America, President Obama has only a few politically unappetizing options left on the table for how to ease a humanitarian crisis that critics say is at least partly his own making.

Fifty thousand people – mostly women with small children and unaccompanied alien children (UACs) – have crossed the Rio Grande River in south Texas this year, and another 40,000 are expected by October. The vast majority are from noncontiguous countries such as Honduras and Guatemala, which means US officials can’t just turn them back at the border. Instead, these women and children are piling up in US detention centers and being released on their own recognizance, with a promise to return to immigration court in months or years.

Most immediately, the crisis has stalled momentum on Capitol Hill toward immigration reform. House Republicans are taking the surge of undocumented women and children as proof that the US border is too porous to even start talking about a path to legal status or citizenship for illegal immigrants already in the US.

Recommended: Could you pass a US citizenship test?

But the situation also gives Mr. Obama a new reason to use his executive powers to bypass a hostile House of Representatives, possibly by expanding his 2012 order that allows thousands of illegal immigrants who came to the US before the age of 16 to avoid deportation and work legally. A new executive order, for example, could expand eligibility to other classes of immigrants, including parents of these so-called Dreamers.

Democrats began pushing that option this week, arguing that Republicans have declared immigration reform “dead” by not offering up a bill, thus forcing Obama’s hand to act unilaterally. The Democratic-controlled Senate approved a bipartisan immigration reform bill a year ago Friday, but the House has not taken it up.

“It’s fair to say the White House and the president have been pretty disappointed,” White House press secretary Josh Earnest said Thursday on MSNBC. “We’re not going to just sit around and wait interminably for Congress.”

Meanwhile, the border situation remains fluid and politically explosive. At stake are not only the future prospects of thousands of illegal immigrants, but also perhaps the 2014 elections, in which scenes from an unsettled border may inflame an already-passionate Republican base and possibly tip control of the Senate away from Democrats.

“The timing here couldn’t be worse for the broader immigration debate – both in terms of the administration’s ability to tell the story about how the border is more secure and it’s time to move on to broader reforms … and the fact that there’s a narrative emerging that previous administrative actions are contributing to unauthorized migrant children arriving here,” says Marc Rosenblum of the nonpartisan Migration Policy Institute in Washington.

In addition, some conservatives have characterized the situation as a setup. The administration, they say, purposely set the migration surge into motion to create a border crisis that Obama and Democrats could cite to expand DACA and take other unilateral executive actions. (Along those lines, the conservative Drudge Report had this headline: “Nancy Pelosi to greet new arrivals at border.” The House minority leader’s office on Friday confirmed that she will be touring the South Texas Detention Facility, as reported, but that she will not be meeting with the children.”)

Such suspicions have transformed the border crisis into a Republican rallying cry, including alarms over disease, gangs, and economic harm to American workers.

Moreover, according to Eli Kantor, an immigration attorney in Beverly Hills, Calif., Obama appears to be winking at Hispanic immigrants. For example, while Obama warned Central Americans this week that their children will be sent back if they cross the border, he also earlier appropriated $2 million for legal groups to help make asylum claims for children who have managed to arrive there.

“The president is talking out of both sides of his mouth,” says Mr. Kantor.

Any citizen of a noncontiguous nation who manages to sneak into the United States can request asylum once apprehended. The United Nations has estimated that two-thirds of the arriving unaccompanied minors may have a case, and US immigration judges, on average, give asylum to about half of seekers, on the basis of their individual stories.

The crisis has begun to take a political toll on prospects for Obama’s immigration reform strategy. The president met with Department of Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson this week to mull over his options, even as word leaked out that the administration may stay its hand on possible expansion of executive orders on immigration, so as not to rile Republicans too much before the midterm elections.

Obama “really is in a very tight place,” Doris Meissner, director of immigration policy at the Migration Policy Institute, told the Washington Times. “It’s virtually an impossible situation. It is not a situation that in any way respects policy and reasonable discourse. It’s entirely politics.”

http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Politics/2014/0627/Border-crisis-With-immigration-reform-dead-will-Obama-act-alone

Proud to be an American? You’re probably not a true liberal.

Michelle Obama took some heat in 2008 for saying that, “for the first time in my adult life I am proud of my country…

As it turns out, that sentiment isn’t all that unusual on the far left of American politics. According to a new Pew Research Center study, only 40 percent of consistently liberal Americans say they often feel proud to be Americans.

The other 60 percent say that doesn’t describe them.

The finding is contained in Pew’s new “Political Typology” report, which breaks Americans down into seven different categories — rather than the usual three. Among the seven categories, “solid liberals” are the only group in which a majority say they aren’t regularly proud to be Americans.

ProudAmerican

 

By contrast, more than seven in 10 “steadfast conservatives” and eight in 10 “business conservatives” say they are generally proud to be Americans.

The poll also shows many liberals don’t liken themselves to your average American. Just 51 percent say they feel as though they are “typical Americans” — as compared to three-quarters of conservatives and at least two-thirds of all the other groups.

The results differ from other recent polling which has tested a similar question. Gallup found strong majorities of all political groups say they are generally proud to be Americans, and Fox News in 2011 actually foundmore Democrats than Republicans said they were proud.

Part of the difference in the new poll, undoubtedly, is that Pew drills down a little more to highlight differences between true liberals and other liberals who might not be as consistent. Pew’s definition of “solid liberals” comprises just 15 percent of the American population — a much smaller group than just “liberals” or Democrats.

The second is that Pew asked people whether they thought “often feel proud to be an American” was a phrase that described them well. Apparently that’s a higher bar than asking people whether they are proud of their country in general.

Also, just in case this post made you long for the dulcet tones of Lee Greenwood:

Beyond Red vs. Blue: Political Typology

Beyond Red vs. Blue: The Political Typology

Even in an increasingly Red vs. Blue nation, the public’s political attitudes and values come in many shades and hues.

The 2014 Political Typology:  Polarized Wings, a Diverse MiddlePartisan polarization – the vast and growing gap between Republicans and Democrats – is a defining feature of politics today. But beyond the ideological wings, which make up a minority of the public, the political landscape includes a center that is large and diverse, unified by frustration with politics and little else. As a result, both parties face formidable challenges in reaching beyond their bases to appeal to the middle of the electorate and build sustainable coalitions.

The latest Pew Research Center political typology, which sorts voters into cohesive groups based on their attitudes and values, provides a field guide for this constantly changing landscape. Before reading further,take our quiz to see where you fit in the typology.

Take the Typology Quiz

Discover which typology group you fit into and explore each group’s views on major issues.

Compare Typology Groups on Issues

The new typology has eight groups: Three are strongly ideological, highly politically engaged and overwhelmingly partisan – two on the right and one on the left. Steadfast Conservatives are staunch critics of government and the social safety net and are very socially conservative. Business Conservatives share Steadfast Conservatives’ preference for limited government, but differ in their support for Wall Street and business, as well as immigration reform. And Business Conservatives are far more moderate on social issues than are Steadfast Conservatives.
At the other end of the spectrum, Solid Liberals express liberal attitudes across almost every realm – government, the economy and business and foreign policy, as well as on race, homosexuality and abortion – and are reliable and loyal Democratic voters.

Taken together, these three groups form the electoral base of the Democratic and Republican Parties, and their influence on American politics is strong. While Solid Liberals, Steadfast Conservatives and Business Conservatives collectively make up only 36% of the American public, they represent 43% of registered voters and fully 57% of the more politically engaged segment of the American public: those who regularly vote and routinely follow government and public affairs.

The other typology groups are less partisan, less predictable and have little in common with each other or the groups at either end of the political spectrum. The one thing they do share is that they are less engaged politically than the groups on the right or left.

Young Outsiders lean Republican but do not have a strong allegiance to the Republican Party; in fact they tend to dislike both political parties. On many issues, from their support for environmental regulation to their liberal views on social issues, they diverge from traditional GOP orthodoxy. Yet in their support for limited government, Young Outsiders are firmly in the Republicans’ camp.

Hard-Pressed Skeptics have been battered by the struggling economy, and their difficult financial circumstances have left them resentful of both government and business. Despite their criticism of government performance, they back more generous government support for the poor and needy. Most Hard-Pressed Skeptics say they voted for Obama in 2012, though fewer than half approve of his job performance today.

The Next Generation Left are young, relatively affluent and very liberal on social issues like same-sex marriage and abortion. But they have reservations about the cost of social programs. And while most of the Next Generation Left support affirmative action, they decisively reject the idea that racial discrimination is the main reason why many blacks are unable to get ahead.

The Faith and Family Left lean Democratic, based on their confidence in government and support for federal programs to address the nation’s problems. But this very religious, racially and ethnically diverse group is uncomfortable with the pace of societal change, including the acceptance of homosexuality and non-traditional family structures.

And finally, an eighth group, the Bystanders, representing 10% of the public, are on the sidelines of the political process. They are not registered to vote and pay very little attention to politics.

What is the Typology?

The Political Typology sorts people into groups based on their attitudes and values, not their partisan labels. It is based on the largest political survey ever undertaken by the Pew Research Center, which also was the data source for our June 12 report Political Polarization in the American PublicThe survey was conducted among 10,013 adults from January to March of this year. The report also includes data from follow-up interviews with many of the initial survey’s respondents as part of the Pew Research Center’s newly-created American Trends Panel.

Ideological Consistency vs. the Political Typology

The polarization study found that more Americans today hold consistently liberal or consistently conservative values across a wide range of issues, that Democrats and Republicans are further apart ideologically and that more partisans express deeply negative views of the other political party, with many going so far as to see the other side as a “threat to the nation’s well-being.”

Even so, most Americans do not view politics through uniformly liberal or conservative lenses, and more tend to stand apart from partisan antipathy than engage in it. But the typology shows that the center is hardly unified. Rather, it is a combination of groups, each with their own mix of political values, often held just as strongly as those on the left and the right, but just not organized in consistently liberal or conservative terms. Taken together, this “center” looks like it is halfway between the partisan wings. But when disaggregated, it becomes clear that there are many distinct voices in the center, often with as little in common with each other as with those who are on the left and the right.

The Pew Research Center’s Political Typology, launched 27 years ago, is an effort to look beyond “Red vs. Blue” in American politics, understanding that there are multiple dimensions to American political thinking, and that many people hold different combinations of values than the predominantly liberal and conservative platforms offered by the two political parties.

Electoral Implications

Middle Typology Groups Least Likely to Follow Government & Public AffairsThe new study highlights the challenges that both parties face heading into the 2014 and 2016 elections. Each can count on strong support from the three staunchly partisan groups; Steadfast Conservatives and Business Conservatives on the right, and Solid Liberals on the left. In all three groups, 2014 midterm preferences are comparable to the overwhelming support these groups gave their party’s presidential candidate in 2012.

The middle groups in the typology are less predictable. To be sure, the Faith and Family Left and the Next Generation Left favor Democratic congressional candidates this year by roughly two-to-one margins. But they supported Barack Obama by wider margins in 2012, and their 2014 turnout is suspect. One early indicator of voter turnout is attention to government and public affairs, and fewer than half in these groups are following politics, compared with broad majorities in the more ideological groups.

And the Hard-Pressed Skeptics – who say they supported Obama over Romney by a 65%-25% margin two years ago – are more closely divided in 2014. As they look toward this year’s midterms, 51% plan to vote for the Democrat in their congressional district, while 37% plan to vote Republican. And the Republican-leaning Young Outsiders intend to vote Republican this fall by a somewhat larger margin (20 points) than they did in 2012 (11 points). Yet these groups also are less certain to turn out this fall compared with the more partisan bases.

Voting Preferences of the Typology Groups

Divisions on the Right

Steadfast, Business Conservatives Differ over Immigration, HomosexualityThe typology study may have even greater relevance for understanding 2016, both for the nomination contests and the general election. In both parties’ electoral coalitions, there are fissures on some of the most important dimensions in American politics.

On the right, coalitional politics are focused on the Steadfast Conservatives and Business Conservatives, both of whom lean Republican by overwhelming margins. Combined they make up about a quarter (27%) of all registered voters.

Both groups are overwhelmingly white and mostly male; Steadfast Conservatives are older on average (67% age 50 and older) than Business Conservatives (53%). And while they represent two clearly different wings of the party – one more downscale and pessimistic, one more wealthy and optimistic – both are reliable GOP voting blocs.

Steadfast Conservatives and Business Conservatives agree that government should be smaller and play less of a role in the economy. They are unified in their intense opposition to President Obama – fully 94% of Steadfast Conservatives and 96% of Business Conservatives disapprove of his job performance. Notably, nearly identical shares of both groups agree with the Tea Party (55% of Business Conservatives, 53% of Steadfast Conservatives).

But these conservative groups differ in three important ways on policy debates that currently divide Republican leaders in Washington.

First, Steadfast Conservatives take very conservative views on key social issues like homosexuality and immigration, while Business Conservatives are less conservative – if not actually progressive – on these issues. Nearly three-quarters of Steadfast Conservatives (74%) believe that homosexuality should be discouraged by society. Among Business Conservatives, just 31% think homosexuality should be discouraged; 58% believe it should be accepted.

Business Conservatives have generally positive attitudes toward immigrants and 72% favor a “path to citizenship” for those in the U.S. illegally, if they meet certain conditions. Steadfast Conservatives are more critical of immigrants; 50% support a path to citizenship, the lowest share of any typology group.

Second, just as Steadfast Conservatives are opposed to big government, they also are skeptical of big business. They believe that large corporations have too much power, and nearly half (48%) say the economic system unfairly favors powerful interests. By contrast, as their name suggests, Business Conservatives are far more positive about the free market, and overwhelmingly regard business – and Wall Street – positively.

Finally, these two conservative groups differ over foreign policy. Steadfast Conservatives have doubts about U.S. international engagement – and view free trade agreements as a bad thing for the U.S. – while Business Conservatives are more supportive of the U.S. taking an active role in world affairs and free trade.

Divisions on the Left

Strains in the Democratic Coalition over Morality, Homosexuality, Expanding the Social Safety NetSolid Liberals, who constitute 15% of the public and 17% of registered voters, are the anchor of the Democratic Party’s electoral coalition – the most avid and loyal voters, holding liberal views across nearly all issues.

But the party must rely on support from the other Democratically-oriented groups in the typology – the Faith and Family Left and Next Generation Left – to be successful. While each of these groups leans Democratic by wide margins, they diverge from across-the-board liberal thinking in a number of critical ways that have implications for their loyalty and turnout.

The Faith and Family Left is by far the most racially and ethnically diverse group in the typology: In fact, just 41% are white non-Hispanic; 30% are black, 19% are Hispanic and 8% are other or mixed race. The Faith and Family Left also is less affluent and less educated than the other Democratically-oriented groups, and is older as well.

They also have strong religious convictions, which distinguishes them from Solid Liberals and the Next Generation Left. Fully 91% say “it is necessary to believe in God in order to be moral and have good values.” No more than about one-in-ten in the other Democratically-oriented groups agree. And the Faith and Family Left have much more conservative positions on social issues. Just 37% favor same-sex marriage, less than half the share of the other two groups on the left.

The Faith and Family Left support activist government and a strong social safety net, though by less overwhelming margins than Solid Liberals. And while the Faith and Family Left support affirmative action programs, just 31% believe that “racial discrimination is the main reason many black people can’t get ahead these days.” Among the much less racially diverse Solid Liberals, 80% think racial discrimination is the main barrier to black progress.

The Next Generation Left is the youngest of the typology groups. Roughly half (52%) are younger than 40, and this segment characterizes the liberal leanings of the Millennial (and younger Gen X) cohorts: The Next Generation Left embrace diversity, are generally positive about what government can do and are relatively upbeat about their own – and the nation’s – future.

Yet in critical ways, the Next Generation Left have clear differences with Solid Liberals. While supportive of government, they have a fairly individualistic take on opportunity and self-achievement. As a result, they balk at the costs of expanding the social safety net – just 39% say the government should do more to help needy Americans even if it means going deeper into debt.

In addition, the Next Generation Left are less skeptical about business than the other Democratically-oriented groups. While they are no more likely than Solid Liberals to have investments in the stock market, a majority of the Next Generation Left (56%) say that Wall Street does more to help the economy than hurt it, compared with 36% of Solid Liberals.

A Pair of Political ‘Wild Cards’: Young Outsiders, Hard-Pressed Skeptics

Young Outsiders Share Republicans’ Views on Government, Not Social IssuesThe wild cards in the new political typology are the Young Outsiders and the Hard-Pressed Skeptics. Both groups have weak partisan leanings, which are reflected in their early preferences in this fall’s midterms: Young Outsiders favor the Republican candidate, or lean Republican, by a 53% to 33% margin; Hard-Pressed Skeptics plan to vote Democratic by 51% to 37%.

Whether many will show up at the polls is an open question: They are less likely than the core partisan typology groups to say they always vote.

Nonetheless, Young Outsiders may present an attractive opportunity for the GOP. They are younger and more diverse than Republicans generally. Nearly half are under 40, compared with just 33% among all Republicans. Yet Young Outsiders do not feel very favorably toward the GOP; in fact, nearly as many have a favorable opinion of the Democratic Party (34%) as the Republican Party (39%).

Young Outsiders share Republicans’ deep opposition to increased government spending on social programs. About three-quarters of Young Outsiders (76%) say the government can’t afford to spend more to help the needy.

However, the Young Outsiders’ generational imprint on issues like homosexuality, diversity and the environment make the Republican Party an uncomfortable fit. In views of societal acceptance of homosexuality, for instance, Young Outsiders have more liberal views than the public overall, and are much more liberal than Republicans.

Hard-Pressed Skeptics Critical of Government, But Favor More SpendingSimilarly, Hard-Pressed Skeptics have ambivalent views of the Democratic Party and disagree with Democrats on major issues as often, if not more, as they agree. Hard-Pressed Skeptics face the most difficult financial circumstances of any of the typology groups, More than half (56%) have family incomes of less than $30,000 a year and 67% say they often don’t have enough money to make ends meet.

In 2012, Hard-Pressed Skeptics say they voted for Obama over Mitt Romney by more than two-to-one (65% to 25%), but today just 44% approve of the way Obama is handling his job as president; 48% disapprove.

Hard-Pressed Skeptics are not in sync with mainstream Democratic thinking in views of Obama’s major policy initiatives – just 40% approve of the Affordable Care Act. And they take more conservative views on social issues, such as homosexuality and abortion, than do rank-and-file Democrats generally.

So why do Hard-Pressed Skeptics remain in the Democrats’ camp, however marginally? In part, it may be because of their strong support for increased government social spending. Even though they take a dim view of government performance, 66% of Hard-Pressed Skeptics say the government should do more for the needy even if it means adding to the debt. That is little different from the 61% of all Democrats who favor more aid for the needy.

And while Hard-Pressed Skeptics are not enthusiastic about the Democratic Party, in some ways they are even more critical of the GOP. For instance, about half of Hard-Pressed Skeptics (53%) believe that the Democratic Party cares about the middle class. But just 26% say the same about the Republican Party.

The More Things Change…

The Pew Research Center created its first political typology in 1987, when President Ronald Reagan was reeling from the Iran-Contra affair and the front-runners for the upcoming presidential election were Sen. Gary Hart for the Democrats and Vice President George H.W. Bush for the GOP.

Much has changed in politics over the past 27 years, of course. But some of the same fissures we identified in that first typology are still evident today. Today, Business Conservatives hold much more liberal positions on homosexuality and morality than do the other largely Republican group, Steadfast Conservatives. In 1987, Enterprise Republicans were much more tolerant than Moral Republicans on many of the social policy issues of the time, such as whether or not school boards should have the right to fire homosexual teachers.

On the left today, the majority-non-white Faith and Family Left is highly religious and has much more conservative attitudes about the acceptability of homosexuality and abortion than do the Next Generation Left or Solid Liberals. But this same fissure existed in the late 1980s between what we then described as the Partisan Poor andPassive Poor and the more upscale 60s Democrats and Seculars.

Every Typology study between 1987 and 2014 has found a very downbeat, financially stressed group who is skeptical of government, yet supports the programs that assist people facing economic disadvantages. Over time, we have referred to them as theDisaffected, the Embittered or today the Hard-Pressed Skeptics, and their political leanings have varied with administrations, issues and economic conditions.

But not all has been constant in the Political Typology, reflecting changing generational, demographic and political contexts. An anchor of the Democratic Party in 1987 was theNew Dealers, representing the generation raised during economic strife and World War II. With the New Deal generation largely gone, the Democratic coalition now leans heavily on the Next Generation Left, who are more socially liberal than their predecessors, but also somewhat more economically conservative.

And the appearance of the Young Outsiders is a new group in the political landscape. Previous typology studies have found right-leaning groups, such as the Pro Government Conservatives in 2005, who proved critical to George W. Bush’s reelection. Drawn to the GOP coalition by the party’s positions on security issues and morality, they otherwise supported a more expansive view of government and social programs. The Young Outsiders today are very different, as they share the GOP base’s deep skepticism of government programs, but favor a more limited foreign policy, and hold decidedly liberal social views.

About the Study

This is the second report of a multi-part series on political polarization based on a national survey of 10,013 adults nationwide, conducted January 23-March 16, 2014 by the Pew Research Center and funded in part through grants from the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation and supported by the generosity of Don C. and Jeane M. Bertsch.

The first report, released June 12, focused on the nature, scope and trajectory of political polarization in the American public, and how it interrelates with government, society and people’s personal lives.

This report uses cluster analysis to sort people into cohesive groups, based on their responses to 23 questions covering an array of political attitudes and values. First developed in 1987, the Pew Research Center’s Political Typology has provided a portrait of the electorate at various points across five presidencies; the last typology study was released in May 2011.

Over the course of 2014, the project will further explore the various factors that contribute to – or stem from – political polarization. A September report will examine how political polarization is linked to people’s information environments: Their news sources, social media habits and interpersonal communication networks. Other reports will look at how political polarization relates to where people live, their political environments, how they view themselves and others around them, their socioeconomic circumstances, generational changes and broader sociological and psychological personality traits.

About the Data

The data in this report are based on three independent survey administrations with the same randomly selected, nationally representative group of respondents. The first is the center’s largest survey on domestic politics to date: the 2014 Political Polarization and Typology Survey, a national telephone survey of 10,013 adults, on landlines and cell phones, from January through March of this year. The other two surveys involved impaneling subsets of these respondents into the newly created American Trends Panel and following up with them via surveys conducted by web, mail and telephone. The surveys are described in detail in the About the Surveys section of the report.

 

http://www.people-press.org/2014/06/26/the-political-typology-beyond-red-vs-blue/

 

 indian_reservation

Report: Mexican Military Chopper Crosses Into US, Shoots At Border Agents

 

Border Patrolagents in Arizona were reportedly fired upon by a Mexican military helicopter that traveled across the border.

KVOA-TV reports that Mexican authorities were conducting a drug interdiction operation when the incident happened early Thursday morning on the Tohono O’odham Indian Nation. The Mexican chopper fired at the agents and then flew back into Mexico.

Art del Cueto, Border Patrol Tucson Sector union president, tells KVOA that they called and apologized for the incident.

“The incident occurred after midnight and before 6 a.m. Helicopter flew into the U.S. and fired on two U.S.Border Patrol agents,” del Cueto said in a statement to KVOA. “The incident occurred west of the SanMiguel Gate on the Tohono O’odham Indian Nation. The agents were unharmed. The helicopter went back into Mexico. Mexico then contacted U.S. authorities and apologized for the incident.”

Andy Adame, Border Patrol spokesperson, said that Mexican authorities fired two shots at the border agents.

“Two shots were fired from the helicopter but no injuries or damage to U.S. property were reported,” Adame told KVOA.

The incident is under investigation.

http://lasvegas.cbslocal.com/2014/06/27/report-mexican-military-chopper-crosses-into-us-shoots-at-border-agents/

 

The ‘DREAM Act’ I Saw: ‘It Sure Doesn’t Look Like Ellis Island’

When you step foot into the control room at the U.S. Border Patrol station in McAllen, Texas, the first thing that hits you is the smell.

 

illegal, alien, immigration

An illegal alien child drinks from a plastic bottle behind a security fence door inside a bus depot/housing facility in McAllen, Texas. (Photo: CNSNews.com)

 

Hovering somewhere between urine and unwashed humanity, the air is thick and hot. The sound inside the circular, glass-enclosed control room is like that of a beehive, humming with the noise of hundreds of voices mixed with buzzers and footsteps.

“This is where we do the processing,” the border patrol agent tells us.

The border patrol officer gestures to a series of white, cinderblock rooms that form a ring around the enclosed control area. Each small space is sealed by a thick gray door, which is kept locked until an officer motions for the switchboard operator to open it.

 

illegal alien

Illegal immigrants inside a makeshift housing facility maintained by U.S. Border Patrol in McAllen, Texas. (Photo: CNSNews.com)

 

Beside each door, dozens of tanned faces press against glass windows, watching the movement on the open floor around them. Dozens more lie on the hard floor in the middle of the rooms, or on the wide benches attached to the walls.

Most of the visible faces belong to young children or teens; the adults are usually clustered in the back or tending to toddlers and infants.

The scene is devastating, and it’s only one of several windows into the illegal immigration crisis that’s sweeping across the Rio Grande Valley Sector of the U.S.-Mexico border. Since October 2013, more than 181,000 illegal immigrants have already crossed this 250-costal-mile area alone, and the McAllen, Texas station has been the hardest hit.

Border patrol officers are doing the best they can, but they simply aren’t equipped to handle the masses that have flooded their facilities.

 

illegal alien

A former bus depot turned into a housing facility for illegal immigrants in McAllen, Texas. Illegal aliens are behind the chained-fence doors. The floor is cement, there are porta potties, and large fans blow air across the room. (Photo: CNSNews.com)

 

The people – all Latinos, as far as I can tell – are divided into several groups: family units are crammed into several rooms, teens 14 and under in the next, teens 15 and older in another, and single men and women in separate holding areas on the other side of the circle.

People of all ages and genders – anywhere from young children to old men – are systematically brought out of their rooms to be “processed,” which involves taking down any identification, background, where they say they’re headed, anything they can provide. It’s usually not much.

“This is where they start,” the agent explains over the noise. “When they’re picked up at the border, they come here. Once we’ve processed them, they’re taken to the sally port.”

That’s where we head next.

 

illegal alien

Illegal immigrants in housing facility in McAllen, Texas, which is on the U.S.-Mexico border. (Photo: CNSNews.com)

 

The sally port is a converted bus depot attached to the border patrol station. Typically able to hold upwards of 4 buses at a time, the large, cement-floored space has been converted into a makeshift shelter to house the thousands of illegal immigrants that have been flooding the system since February.

Normally, the border patrol detains people anywhere from 12 hours to three days before turning them over to Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or the Department of Health and Human Services, in the case of unaccompanied minors. But a backlog of people is now forcing them to house people for sometimes more than a week, agents said.

“We’ve gotten pretty good at logistics,” one agents told us. “But we’re still only working with what we’ve got.”

 

illegal alien

Rio Grande River near McAllen, Texas where many illegal aliens cross into the United States. (Photo: Brittany Hughes/CNSNews.com)

 

The McAllen station is authorized for 380 people, he explains. It’s currently housing more than 1,100.

They won’t let us in the sally port – the “folks in Washington” require a scheduled visit for that, they tell us. But they say we can stand outside the locked gates at the bus entrance and look.

I’ve been outside for all of thirty seconds, but sweat is already starting to bead on my neck by the time I approach the gate to peer inside.

If the scene inside the station’s control room is bad, the view into the sally port is appalling.

At first, there doesn’t appear to be a floor. Then I realize that’s only because I can barely see it through the mass of bodies strewn across the massive space. There are people everywhere – lying down, standing, sitting, stepping over others in a strained attempt to move around. Border patrol agents mill about with clipboards, talking to various people and administering basic medicine.

 

illegal alien

Illegal aliens inside temporary housing facility in McAllen, Texas. (Photo: CNSNews.com)

 

Off to one side, next to a row of blue porta potties, a group of four young girls are curled up together on the floor, resting on one another’s limbs. All four are caked in mud to the knee, most likely from their trip across the border. They remind me of a litter of kittens I once saw, scrunched together in a little ball.

There’s a simple strip of yellow crime scene tape that ropes off a small section of the space, the only barrier that separates the healthy from those who have been diagnosed with scabies.

 

illegal alien

On the U.S. side of the Rio Grande River in McAllen, Texas,  looking over at Mexico, where people are standing on the shore and where some illegals were taken to the U.S. side by Jet ski and dropped off in the brush at the riverside. (Photo: CNSNews.com)

 

In the “sick ward,” a mother sits with her back against the locked gate, cradling a small child in her arms. She wipes the sweat from her own forehead before placing a half a dozen wet wipes on the little boy’s face and chest, trying to cool him down. A second toddler sits beside her, sucking on a bottle filled with something that looks like orange juice.

Even standing under the force of five jumbo fans and a strong Texas breeze, the stench of unwashed bodies and well-used toilets hangs heavy, stagnating under the sweltering 100-degree heat and making it hard to breathe.

A border patrol bus pulls up to the gate. The doors open and a dozen more immigrants, mostly children, pile out, having come straight from the banks of the Rio Grande where smugglers ferried them from the Mexican bank to the United States.  An agent ushers them through the door and into the processing room.

This isn’t a dream, and it sure doesn’t look like Ellis Island.

http://cnsnews.com/news/article/brittany-m-hughes/dream-act-i-saw-it-sure-doesnt-look-ellis-island

 

 

Brooks County Ranchers Worry About Criminal Immigrants

Sex offenders, murder suspects and gang members are making their way through the vast rangelands of Brooks County.

The Vickers ranch is one of the many land spreads affected by the surge in illegal immigration. What is more concerning to the ranch owners is the type of people trekking through their land.

Linda Vickers never wanders away from her house without her trusty canine companions – Blitz, Elsa, Schotten and Tinkerbell.

The dogs provide a sense of security in a land of insecurity.

“The safety factor out here has changed,” Vickers said.

Vickers and her husband own and operate a nearly-1,000-acre ranch in Brooks County.

Vickers reports anyone who crosses her fence line to Border Patrol.

“As of yesterday, 196 illegal immigrants with 136 apprehensions by Border Patrol,” she said.

The dogs sniff out those hiding in the brush.

“There are some good, helpless people. Then, there are some really bad ones,” Vickers said.

Earlier this week, Vickers took a photo of a man on her front porch. She said the man had a Tango Blast tattoo.

Tango Blast is the largest and one of the most dangerous gangs operating in the state, according to the Texas Department of Public Safety.

“I sometimes have to take a step back and realize the jeopardy that could happen out here,” Vickers said.

It’s not just gang members that worry Vickers. Border Patrol agents arrested a wanted murderer near Falfurrias and sex offenders in the Rio Grande Valley last weekend.

“They’re everywhere,” Vickers said.

Border Patrol Spokesman Oscar Saldana said criminals won’t turn themselves in like families and unaccompanied children.

“They may have something to hide,” Saldana said. “Some of that criminal history can be very dangerous.”

Still, Vickers won’t leave her land.

“Even my husband couldn’t blast me outta here,” she said with a laugh.

http://www.krgv.com/news/brooks-county-ranchers-worry-about-criminal-immigrants/

 

Study: All Employment Growth Since 2000 Went to Immigrants

According to a major new report from the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS), net employment growth in the United States since 2000 has gone entirely to immigrants, legal and illegal. Using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, CIS scholars Steven A. Camarota and Karen Zeigler found that there were 127,000 fewer working-age natives holding a job in the first quarter of 2014 than in 2000, while the number of immigrants with a job was 5.7 million above the 2000 level.

The rapidity with which immigrants recovered from the Great Recession, as well as the fact that they held a disproportionate share of jobs relative to their share of population growth before the recession, help to explain their findings, the authors report. In addition, native-born Americans and immigrants were affected differently by the recession.

Other significant findings include:

  • Because the native-born population grew significantly, but the number working actually fell, there were 17 million more working-age natives not working in the first quarter of 2014 than in 2000.
  • The share of natives working or looking for work, referred to as labor force participation, shows the same decline as the employment rate. In fact, labor force participation has continued to decline for working-age natives even after the jobs recovery began in 2010.
  • Immigrants have made gains across the labor market, including lower-skilled jobs such as maintenance, construction, and food service; middle-skilled jobs like office support and health care support; and high­er-skilled jobs, including management, computers, and health care practitioners.
  • The supply of potential workers is enormous: 8.7 million native college graduates are not working, as are 17 million with some college, and 25.3 million with no more than a high school education.

According to the study, 58 million working-age natives are not employed.

Camarota and Zeigler report three conclusions:

  • First, the long-term decline in the employment for natives across age and education levels is a clear in­dication that there is no general labor shortage, which is a primary justification for the large increases in immigration (skilled and unskilled) in the Schumer-Rubio bill and similar House proposals.
  • Second, the decline in work among the native-born over the last 14 years of high immigration is consis­tent with research showing that immigration reduces employment for natives.
  • Third, the trends since 2000 challenge the argument that immigration on balance increases job oppor­tunities for natives. Over 17 million immigrants arrived in the country in the last 14 years, yet native employment has deteriorated significantly.

The Center for Immigration Studies is a non-profit research institute. Founded in 1985, the organization is regularly consulted by policymakers, the academic community, and the media on matters of immigration policy.

http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/381362/study-all-employment-growth-2000-went-immigrants-nro-staff

 

 

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The Pronk Pops Show 286, June 26, 2014: Story 1: Tea Party Moving To New Political Party — Too Much Spending, Too Much Taxing, Too Much Regulating — Too Much Lying — The Party’s Over — Videos

Posted on June 26, 2014. Filed under: American History, Applications, Banking System, Blogroll, Budgetary Policy, College, Communications, Computers, Constitutional Law, Economics, Education, Employment, Energy, Fiscal Policy, Foreign Policy, Government, Government Spending, Hardware, History, Labor Economics, Law, Media, Monetary Policy, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Radio, Regulation, Resources, Software, Tax Policy, Taxes, Technology, Unemployment, United States Constitution, Videos, Violence, War, Wealth, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

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Pronk Pops Show 285 June 25, 2014

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Pronk Pops Show 281: June 17, 2014

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Pronk Pops Show 279: June 13, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 278: June 12, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 277: June 11, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 276: June 10, 2014

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Pronk Pops Show 274: June 6, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 273: June 5, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 272: June 4, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 271: June 2, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 270: May 30, 2014

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Pronk Pops Show 267: May 27, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 266: May 23, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 265: May 22, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 264: May 21, 2014

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Pronk Pops Show 262: May 16, 2014

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Pronk Pops Show 260: May 14, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 259: May 13, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 258: May 9, 2014

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Pronk Pops Show 256: May 5, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 255: May 2, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 254: May 1, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 253: April 30, 2014

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Pronk Pops Show 250: April 25, 2014

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Pronk Pops Show 246: April 17, 2014

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Pronk Pops Show 234: March 28, 2014

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Pronk Pops Show 230: March 24, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 229: March 21, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 228: March 20, 2014

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Pronk Pops Show 226: March 18, 2014

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Pronk Pops Show 224: March 7, 2014

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Pronk Pops Show 222: March 3, 2014

Story 1: Tea Party Moving To New Political Party — Too Much Spending, Too Much Taxing, Too Much Regulating — Too Much Lying  — The Party’s Over — Videos

Gallup Polls

Party Affiliation

gallup_poll_party_affilaition

http://www.gallup.com/poll/15370/Party-Affiliation.aspx

Tea Party Movement

tea partytea_party_supporter

  http://www.gallup.com/poll/147635/Tea-Party-Movement.aspx

Doris Day sings The Party’s Over (Democrat Party Version)

The Party’s Over – Judy Holliday (Republican Party Version)

Don Mclean American Pie 1972

John Birch Society Predicted 10 Steps To America’s Destruction 55 Years Ago

What Is the John Birch Society?

Barry Goldwater: “Extremism in the defense of liberty…”

Father of Conservative “Extremism”

Mr. Conservative: Barry Goldwater’s late career and libertarianism

Barry Goldwater Against Big Government (1964) – Classic Campaign Ad

A Time for Choosing” by Ronald Reagan

Firing Line with William F. Buckley Jr. “The Future of Conservatism”

Firing Line “William F. Buckley Jr. Looks Back with Barry Goldwater on Politics, Etc.”

Barry Goldwater Documentary Part I – KVOA/Tucson 1983

Barry Goldwater Documentary Part II – KVOA/Tucson 1983

GOP Edges out Tea Party in Mississippi primaries

Dont-Hurt-People-Take-Their-Stuff-Matt-Kibbe-Glenn-Beck-Book

Matt Kibbe on the Tea Party and libertarianism

Matt Kibbe, the president and CEO of the political advocacy group Freedom Works, discusses the past, present and future of the Tea Party movement — a movement that Freedom Works was instrumental in creating. He also discusses his own belief in libertarianism and its future. Interview by Rob Nikolewski, New Mexico Watchdog, 5/12/14.

Matt Kibbe of Freedomworks Discusses the Tea Party Movement

Matt Kibbe on Glenn Beck Radio

Why the Tea Party Continues to Win

• Mark Levin • Tea Party Victory • Cantor Loses • Hannity • 6/10/14 •

Tea Party In Focus 5 Years After Movement Began – Mark Levin On Cavuto

Tea Party Patriots Anniversary & Tea Party Movement Influence – Special Report All Star Panel

Tea-Party: The Most Dangerous ‘Social-Movement’ in America Today?

IRS and FBI Wanted to Criminally Prosecute Tea Party Groups for Engaging in “Political Activity.”

Congress questions IRS about Tea Party emails

9.12 DC TEA PARTY – March Footage with Interviews

Tea Party America (BBC Documentary)

Senator Cruz Accuses Obama And Holder Of Conspiring To Use The I.R.S. As A Weapon

Don McLean – The meaning of American Pie (UPDATE)

 

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The Pronk Pops Show 285, June 25, 2014, Story 2: The Obama Recession Kicks In With First Quarter 2014 Real Gross Domestic Product of -2.9% — Videos

Posted on June 25, 2014. Filed under: American History, Banking System, Blogroll, Budgetary Policy, Business, Communications, Computers, Constitutional Law, Economics, Education, Employment, Federal Government, Fiscal Policy, Government, Government Dependency, Government Spending, History, Illegal Immigration, Immigration, Investments, Labor Economics, Law, Media, Monetary Policy, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Pro Life, Radio, Regulation, Tax Policy, Taxes, Unemployment, Videos, Wealth, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

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The Pronk Pops Show Podcasts

Pronk Pops Show 285 June 25, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 284: June 23, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 283: June 20, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 282: June 19, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 281: June 17, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 280: June 16, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 279: June 13, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 278: June 12, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 277: June 11, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 276: June 10, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 275: June 9, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 274: June 6, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 273: June 5, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 272: June 4, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 271: June 2, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 270: May 30, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 269: May 29, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 268: May 28, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 267: May 27, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 266: May 23, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 265: May 22, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 264: May 21, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 263: May 20, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 262: May 16, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 261: May 15, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 260: May 14, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 259: May 13, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 258: May 9, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 257: May 8, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 256: May 5, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 255: May 2, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 254: May 1, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 253: April 30, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 252: April 29, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 251: April 28, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 250: April 25, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 249: April 24, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 248: April 22, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 247: April 21, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 246: April 17, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 245: April 16, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 244: April 15, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 243: April 14, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 242: April 11, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 241: April 10, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 240: April 9, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 239: April 8, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 238: April 7, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 237: April 4, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 236: April 3, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 235: March 31, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 234: March 28, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 233: March 27, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 232: March 26, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 231: March 25, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 230: March 24, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 229: March 21, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 228: March 20, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 227: March 19, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 226: March 18, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 225: March 17, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 224: March 7, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 223: March 6, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 222: March 3, 2014

Story 2: The Obama Recession Kicks In With First Quarter 2014  Real Gross Domestic Product of  -2.9% — Videos

 

gdp_large

The Incredible Shrinking Economy GDP falls 2.9% in first quarter – Lonewolf Sager

US GDP Drops

Gold Ends Near Steady But Up From Early Low, Lifted By Weak U.S. Data

BBC News US GDP Shrinking economy hits small businesses

Dr. Paul Craig Roberts: Fed Laundering Treasury Bonds in Belgium, Real GDP was Negative & More

Marc Chandler looks at ECB policy & Catherine Austin Fitts on tech & future econ

Free Markets and Small Government Produce Prosperity

Deficits are Bad, but the Real Problem is Spending

Keynesian Economics Is Wrong: Bigger Gov’t Is Not Stimulus

Eight Reasons Why Big Government Hurts Economic Growth

The Empirical Evidence Against Big Government

Fiscal and Monetary Policy Overview

Income and Expenditure Views of GDP

Components of GDP

Introduction to Gross Domestic Product

This video introduces the concept of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) as a measure of aggregate output or income and describes what is included in GDP.

Calculating Gross Domestic Product

 

 

MASSIVE GDP PLUNGE

Economists estimated U.S. GDP contracted in the first quarter, but not by this much.

 

According to the Bureau of Economic Analysis, GDP fell 2.9% at an annualized rate in Q1. This third estimate was down sharply from the BEA’s previous estimate of -1.0%.

This was also much worse than the -1.8% forecast by economists.

As expected, healthcare spending was revised down sharply. It went from adding 1.01 percentage points to subtracting 0.16 from the headline GDP growth number.

“It marked the second biggest downward revision from the agency’s second GDP estimate since records began in 1976,” reported Bloomberg’s Jeanna Smialek.

From the BEA: “The decrease in real GDP in the first quarter primarily reflected negative contributions from private inventory investment, exports, state and local government spending, nonresidential fixed investment, and residential fixed investment that were partly offset by a positive contribution from PCE. Imports, which are a subtraction in the calculation of GDP, increased.”

Personal-consumption growth was slashed to 1.0% from 2.4%.

The buildup in inventories subtracted 1.7 percentage points from GDP.

Real final sales, or GDP less the change in private inventories, was revised to -1.3%. That’s down from +0.6% a month ago. It was +2.7% in Q4.
http://www.businessinsider.com/q1-gdp-third-release-2014-6

Bad to worse: US economy shrank more than expected in Q1

 

The U.S. economy contracted at a much steeper pace than previously estimated in the first quarter, but there are indications that growth has sincerebounded strongly.

The Commerce Department said on Wednesday gross domestic product fell at a 2.9 percent annual rate, the economy’s worst performance in five years, instead of the 1.0 percent pace it had reported last month.

While the economy’s woes have been largely blamed on an unusually cold winter, the magnitude of the revisions suggest other factors at play beyond the weather. Growth has now been revised down by a total of 3.0 percentage points since the government’s first estimate was published in April, which hadthe economy expanding at a 0.1 percent rate.

The difference between the second and third estimates was the largest on records going back to 1976, the Commerce Department said. Economists had expected growth to be revised to show it contracting at a 1.7 percent rate. Sharp revisions to GDP numbers are not unusual as the government does not have complete data when it makes its initial and preliminary estimates.

The latest revisions reflect a weaker pace of healthcare spending than previously assumed, which caused a downgrading of the consumer spending estimate. Trade was also a bigger drag on the economy than previously thought. The economy grew at a 2.6 percent pace in the final three months of 2013. With the first quarter in the rear view and the April-June period looking stronger, investors are likely to ignore the report.

Data such as employment, manufacturing and services sectors point to a sharp acceleration in growth early in the second quarter. However, the pace of expansion could fall short of expectations, which range as high as a 3.6 percent rate. Economists estimate severe weather could have slashed asmuch as 1.5 percentage points from GDP growth in the first quarter. The government, however, gave no details on the impact of the weather.

Consumer spending, which accounts for more than two-thirds of U.S. economic activity, increased at a 1.0 percent rate. It was previously reported to have advanced at a 3.1 percent pace. Exports declined at a 8.9 percent rate, instead of 6.0 percent pace, resulting in a trade deficit that sliced off 1.53 percentage points from GDP growth. Weak export growth has been tied to frigid temperatures during the winter.

Businesses accumulated $45.9 billion worth of inventories, a bit less than the $49.0 billion estimated last month. Inventories subtracted 1.70 percentage points from first-quarter growth, but should be a boost to second-quarter growth.

A measure of domestic demand that strips out exports and inventories expanded at a 0.3 percent rate, rather than a 1.6 percent rate.

Durables tumble by more than expected

A separate report showed orders for long-lasting U.S. manufactured goods unexpectedly fell in May, suggesting an anticipated rebound in growth this quarter could fall short of expectations, even as a measure of business capital spending plans rose.

The Commerce Department said durable goods orders declined 1.0 percent as demand for transportation, machinery, computers and electronic products, electrical equipment, appliances and components, and defense capital goods fell.

Orders for durable goods, items ranging from toasters to aircraft that are meant to last three years or more, increased by a revised 0.8 percent in April, when they were boosted by defense equipment.

Economists polled by Reuters had forecast orders being flat last month after April’s previously reported 0.6 percent gain.

Non-defense capital goods orders excluding aircraft, a closely watched proxy for business spending plans, increased 0.7 percent after declining by a revised 1.1 percent in April.

Economists had expected orders for these so-called core capital goods to increase 0.5 percent after April’s previously reported 1.2 percent fall.

The increase in core capital goods points to some pick-up in business spending, which should support second-quarter growth.

While the economy has rebounded from its winter-induced slump in the first quarter, data such as retail sales and housing starts suggest growth could fall short of expectations. Growth forecasts range as high as a 3.6 percent annual pace. The economy shrunk at a 2.9 percent rate in the first quarter.

Core capital goods shipments rose 0.4 percent last month. Shipments of core capital goods are used to calculate equipment spending in the government’s GDP measurement. They had declined 0.4 percent in April.

Last month, orders for transportation equipment fell 3.0 percent as bookings for civilian aircraft fell 4.0 percent. Automobile orders increased 2.1 percent. Orders excluding transportation slipped 0.1 percent after rising 0.4 percent the prior month.

http://www.cnbc.com/id/101787838

 

U.S. GDP Dropped 2.9% In The First Quarter 2014, Down Sharply From Second Estimate

The latest data shows the U.S. economy contracted significantly more than previously estimated in the first quarter of this year.

On Wednesday, the Bureau of Economic Analysis released its third and final estimate of real gross domestic product for the first three months of 2014. The release showed output in the U.S. declining at an annual rate of 2.9%. This is relative to fourth quarter 2013, when real GDP grew 2.6%.

The final number is also down from BEA’s negative 1% second estimate released last month and even more sharply from its first estimate that showed GDP growing 0.1%. While this makes Q1 the economy’s worst since Q1 2009, the heart of the recession, economists were anticipating the further downward revision.

“The bad weather in much of the U.S. in early 2014 was a significant drag on the economy, disrupting production, construction, and shipments, and deterring home and auto sales,” wrote PNC Senior Economist Gus Faucher in a note out prior to the release. “But data show growth rebounding in the second quarter, with improvements in home and auto sales and residential construction.”

The major stock indices slipped into the red as the opening bell approached but quickly returned to positive territory. This seems to indicate that investors were also writing off the contraction as temporary.

In an interview following the release Stephen Auth, Chief Investment Officer at Federated Investors, called the revision “pretty incredible” but says that underlying trends have shown improvement that has simply been “masked” by the weather. He expects second quarter GDP growth to come in north of 4% and continual market gains.

The revision, BEA explained in a release, was largely due to a smaller than previously estimated increase in personal consumption and larger that previously estimated decline in exports. The 2.9% decrease in real GDP reflected the negative contribution from exports as well as declines in private inventory investment  both residential and nonresidential fixed investment and lower local government spending. The rate was also negatively impacted by an increase in imports but partially offset by an increase in federal government spending (the first in a year and a half) and in personal consumption.

The price index for gross domestic purchases — which measures prices paid by U.S. residents — increased 1.3% in line with the prior estimate and compared to 1.5% growth in the fourth quarter. Real personal consumption expenditures increased by 1%, down sharply from the 3.1% second estimate and from the increase of 3.3% in the fourth quarter.

BEA — a division of the Department of Commerce – will release its advance estimate of Q2 GDP estimate on July 30.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/samanthasharf/2014/06/25/u-s-gdp-dropped-2-9-in-the-first-quarter-2014-sharply-lower-from-second-estimate/

 

EMBARGOED UNTIL RELEASE AT 8:30 A.M. EDT, WEDNESDAY, JUNE 25, 2014
BEA 14-28

* See the navigation bar at the right side of the news release text for links to data tables,
contact personnel and their telephone numbers, and supplementary materials.

Lisa S. Mataloni: (202) 606-5304 (GDP) gdpniwd@bea.gov
Kate Shoemaker: (202) 606-5564 (Profits) cpniwd@bea.gov
Jeannine Aversa: (202) 606-2649 (News Media)
National Income and Product Accounts
Gross Domestic Product: First Quarter 2014 (Third Estimate)
Corporate Profits: First Quarter 2014 (Revised Estimate)
      Real gross domestic product -- the output of goods and services produced by labor and property
located in the United States -- decreased at an annual rate of 2.9 percent in the first quarter of 2014
according to the "third" estimate released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis.  In the fourth quarter of
2013, real GDP increased 2.6 percent.

      The GDP estimate released today is based on more complete source data than were available for
the "second" estimate issued last month.  In the second estimate, real GDP was estimated to have
decreased 1.0 percent.  With the third estimate for the first quarter, the increase in personal consumption
expenditures (PCE) was smaller than previously estimated, and the decline in exports was larger than
previously estimated (for more information, see "Revisions" on page 3).

      The decrease in real GDP in the first quarter primarily reflected negative contributions from
private inventory investment, exports, state and local government spending, nonresidential fixed
investment, and residential fixed investment that were partly offset by a positive contribution from PCE.
Imports, which are a subtraction in the calculation of GDP, increased.

BOX.____________

                     Annual Revision of the National Income and Product Accounts

      The annual revision of the national income and product accounts will be released along with the
"advance" estimate of GDP for the second quarter of 2014 on July 30.  In addition to the regular revision
of estimates for the most recent 3 years and for the first quarter of 2014, GDP and select components
will be revised back to the first quarter of 1999.  More information is available in "Preview of Upcoming
NIPA Revision" in the May Survey of Current Business and on BEA's Web site.
The August Survey will contain an article describing the annual revision in detail.

FOOTNOTE.______

      Quarterly estimates are expressed at seasonally adjusted annual rates, unless otherwise
specified.  Quarter-to-quarter dollar changes are differences between these published estimates.  Percent
changes are calculated from unrounded data and are annualized.  "Real" estimates are in chained (2009)
dollars.  Price indexes are chain-type measures.

      This news release is available on BEA’s Web site along with the Technical Note and Highlights
related to this release. For information on revisions, see "Revisions to GDP, GDI, and Their Major Components".

______________

      Real GDP declined 2.9 percent in the first quarter, after increasing 2.6 percent in the fourth.  This
downturn in the percent change in real GDP primarily reflected a downturn in exports, a larger decrease
in private inventory investment, a deceleration in PCE, and downturns in nonresidential fixed
investment and in state and local government spending that were partly offset by an upturn in federal
government spending.

      The price index for gross domestic purchases, which measures prices paid by U.S. residents,
increased 1.3 percent in the first quarter, the same increase as in the second estimate; this index
increased 1.5 percent in the fourth quarter.  Excluding food and energy prices, the price index for gross
domestic purchases increased 1.3 percent in the first quarter, compared with an increase of 1.8 percent in
the fourth.

      Real personal consumption expenditures increased 1.0 percent in the first quarter, compared with
an increase of 3.3 percent in the fourth.  Durable goods increased 1.2 percent, compared with an increase
of 2.8 percent.  Nondurable goods decreased 0.3 percent, in contrast to an increase of 2.9 percent.
Services increased 1.5 percent, compared with an increase of 3.5 percent.

      Real nonresidential fixed investment decreased 1.2 percent in the first quarter, in contrast to an
increase of 5.7 percent in the fourth.  Nonresidential structures decreased 7.7 percent, compared with a
decrease of 1.8 percent.  Equipment decreased 2.8 percent, in contrast to an increase of 10.9 percent.
Intellectual property products increased 6.3 percent, compared with an increase of 4.0 percent.  Real
residential fixed investment decreased 4.2 percent, compared with a decrease of 7.9 percent.

      Real exports of goods and services decreased 8.9 percent in the first quarter, in contrast to an
increase of 9.5 percent in the fourth.  Real imports of goods and services increased 1.8 percent,
compared with an increase of 1.5 percent.

      Real federal government consumption expenditures and gross investment increased 0.6 percent
in the first quarter, in contrast to a decrease of 12.8 percent in the fourth.  National defense decreased 2.5
percent, compared with a decrease of 14.4 percent.  Nondefense increased 5.9 percent, in contrast to a
decrease of 10.0 percent.  Real state and local government consumption expenditures and gross
investment decreased 1.7 percent; it was unchanged in the fourth quarter.

      The change in real private inventories subtracted 1.70 percentage points from the first-quarter
change in real GDP, after subtracting 0.02 percentage point from the fourth-quarter change.  Private
businesses increased inventories $45.9 billion in the first quarter, following increases of $111.7 billion
in the fourth quarter and $115.7 billion in the third.

      Real final sales of domestic product -- GDP less change in private inventories -- decreased 1.3
percent in the first quarter, in contrast to an increase of 2.7 percent in the fourth.


Gross domestic purchases

      Real gross domestic purchases -- purchases by U.S. residents of goods and services wherever
produced -- decreased 1.4 percent in the first quarter, in contrast to an increase of 1.6 percent in the
fourth.


Gross national product

      Real gross national product -- the goods and services produced by the labor and property
supplied by U.S. residents -- decreased 3.6 percent in the first quarter, in contrast to an increase of 3.1
percent in the fourth.  GNP includes, and GDP excludes, net receipts of income from the rest of the
world, which decreased $27.4 billion in the first quarter, in contrast to an increase of $17.0 billion in the
fourth; in the first quarter, receipts decreased $9.8 billion, and payments increased $17.6 billion.


Current-dollar GDP

      Current-dollar GDP -- the market value of the nation's output of goods and services -- decreased
1.7 percent, or $73.6 billion, in the first quarter to a level of $17,016.0 billion.  In the fourth quarter,
current-dollar GDP increased 4.2 percent, or $176.7 billion.


Gross domestic income

      Real gross domestic income (GDI), which measures the output of the economy as the costs
incurred and the incomes earned in the production of GDP, decreased 2.6 percent in the first quarter, in
contrast to an increase of 2.6 percent in the fourth.  For a given quarter, the estimates of GDP and GDI
may differ for a variety of reasons, including the incorporation of largely independent source data.
However, over longer time spans, the estimates of GDP and GDI tend to follow similar patterns of
change.


Revisions

      The downward revision to the percent change in real GDP primarily reflected downward
revisions to personal consumption expenditures and to exports and an upward revision to imports.


                                            Advance Estimate  Second Estimate  Third Estimate
                                                  (Percent change from preceding quarter)
Real GDP.....................................        0.1           -1.0           -2.9
Current-dollar GDP...........................        1.4            0.3           -1.7
Real GDI.....................................         …            -2.3           -2.6
Gross domestic purchases price index.........        1.4            1.3            1.3



                                          Corporate Profits

Profits from current production

      Profits from current production (corporate profits with inventory valuation adjustment (IVA) and
capital consumption adjustment (CCAdj)) decreased $198.3 billion in the first quarter, in contrast to an
increase of $47.1 billion in the fourth.  The IVA decreased $33.2 billion, compared with a decrease of
$0.5 billion.  The CCAdj decreased $195.3 billion, compared with a decrease of $1.5 billion.  The IVA
and CCAdj convert inventory withdrawals and depreciation of fixed assets reported on a tax-return,
historical-cost basis to the current-cost economic measures used in the national income and product
accounts.

      Taxes on corporate income increased $27.8 billion in the first quarter, compared with an increase
of $13.3 billion in the fourth.  Profits after tax with IVA and CCAdj decreased $226.0 billion, in contrast
to an increase of $33.8 billion.  The first-quarter changes in taxes on corporate income and in the CCAdj
mainly reflect the expiration of bonus depreciation provisions.  For further explanation, see the box
below.

      Dividends decreased $87.1 billion in the first quarter, in contrast to an increase of $90.5 billion
in the fourth.  Undistributed profits decreased $139.1 billion, compared with a decrease of $56.7 billion.
Net cash flow with IVA -- the internal funds available to corporations for investment -- decreased
$119.5 billion, compared with a decrease of $43.0 billion.

BOX.________

                    Impacts of Bonus Depreciation on the First Quarter of 2014

      The first-quarter changes in taxes on corporate income and in the capital consumption
adjustment (CCAdj) mainly reflect the expiration of both the 50-percent bonus depreciation provision
and increased Section 179 expensing limits claimed under the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012.
For detailed data, see the table "Net Effects of the Tax Acts of 2002, 2003, 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2012
on Selected Measures of Corporate Profits".

             Bonus depreciation does not affect profits from current production.  Profits from current
production are based on consistent depreciation profiles of fixed assets valued at current cost, not on the
depreciation-accounting practices used for federal income tax returns. For a discussion on the effect of
tax act provisions on the CCAdj, see FAQ 1002, "How do the economic stimulus acts impact NIPA
Corporate Profits?".

____________

      The rest-of-the-world component of profits decreased $25.7 billion in the first quarter, in contrast
to an increase of $22.9 billion in the fourth.  This measure is calculated as the difference between
receipts from the rest of the world and payments to the rest of the world.


Domestic corporate profits with IVA

      Profits of financial corporations decreased $52.6 billion in the first quarter, in contrast to an
increase of $6.1 billion in the fourth.  This decrease was almost entirely accounted for by "other"
financial industries.  Profits of nonfinancial corporations increased $75.4 billion, compared with an
increase of $19.5 billion.  This increase primarily reflected increases in "other" nonfinancial industries,
in utilities industries, in durable-goods manufacturing industries, and in information industries that were
partly offset by a decrease in nondurable-goods manufacturing industries.


Gross value added of nonfinancial domestic corporate business

       In the first quarter, both real gross value added of nonfinancial corporations and profits per unit
of real value decreased.  The decrease in unit profits reflected increases in unit labor and nonlabor costs
incurred by corporations that were partly offset by an increase in unit prices.


                                        *          *          *


       BEA's national, international, regional, and industry estimates; the Survey of Current Business;
and BEA news releases are available without charge on BEA's Web site at www.bea.gov.  By visiting
the site, you can also subscribe to receive free e-mail summaries of BEA releases and announcements.


                                        *          *          *


                          Next release -- July 30, 2014 at 8:30 A.M. EDT for:
                   Gross Domestic Product:  Second Quarter 2014 (Advance Estimate)
                     Annual Revision of the National Income and Product Accounts

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Cochran Campaign Illegally Robocalls Black Democrats Against “Racist” Tea Party

Stop the Tea Party RoboCall

 

Mississippi primary: Thad Cochran celebrates victory against Tea Party rival – video

How Another Tea Party Candidate Lost — Thad Cochran’s Win

Cochran Wins Mississippi Senate Race

Cochran vs. McDaniel: Racist Tactic Emerges in Mississippi GOP Primary Fight

 Robocall Recruiting Dem Votes For GOP Sen. Cochran Bashes Tea Party, Claims Racism

The GOP Senate primary in Mississippi continues to intensify with the surfacing of a robocall aimed at potential voters that strongly criticizes the tea party and urges the listeners to vote against state Sen. Chris McDaniel in Tuesday’s runoff vote.

In the automated message appearing to target black Democrat voters in Mississippi, the female voice on the line claims that tea party challenger Chris McDaniel would lead to more obstruction in Washington and create more “disrespectful treatment” to the nation’s first African-American president.

“The time has come to take a stand and say NO to the tea party,” the message says. “NO to their obstruction. NO to their disrespectful treatment of the first African-American president.”

The robocall, which was first obtained by freelance journalist Charles C. Johnson from a local resident, goes on to urge listeners to go to the next polls Tuesday and vote against McDaniel. The only option in voting against McDaniel is to vote for incumbent Sen. Thad Cochran as they will be the only two names on the ballot.

“If we do nothing, tea party candidate Chris McDaniel wins and causes even more problems for President Obama,” the message continues. “With your help we can stop this. Please commit to voting against tea party candidate Chris McDaniel next Tuesday and say NO to the tea party!”

Some experts have argued that it is technically illegal for voters affiliated with an opposing party to vote in another party’s primary in Mississippi.

The Cochran campaign is denying that they have any connection with the robocall and declared it to be a “stunt” coming from allies of McDaniel.

“It’s an obvious, transparent stunt by McDaniel and his allies,” Jordan Russell, a spokesman for Cochran, told The Daily Caller Sunday.

The McDaniel campaign is claiming otherwise.

“It is clear that Mississippi Republicans have rejected Thad Cochran’s liberal voting record and it’s sad to see Thad Cochran resort to courting Democrats simply to hold onto power,” McDaniel spokesman Noel Fritsch told TheDC.

This isn’t the first allegation that there are efforts to get out Democratic votes for Cochran in Tuesday’s vote.

This is only the latest incident in controversy surrounding efforts to get out Democratic votes for Cochran in the runoff that includes a black preacher — who is a strong supporter of the Democratic nominee for the Senate seat — actively trying to get members of his community to vote for the sitting senator.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DUx7YVPKbBY

Cochran Holds Off Tea Party Challenger in Mississippi

Thad Cochran celebrated his victory with supporters after the primary.CreditEdmund D. Fountain for The New York Times

A surge of voters showed up on Tuesday in African-American precincts and in Mr. Cochran’s other strongholds to surprise Mr. McDaniel, 41, who just Monday night declared his campaign had gone from impossible to improbable to unstoppable. Early Wednesday, with all but one precinct reporting, Mr. Cochran’s lead over Mr. McDaniel was a little more than 6,000 votes. Recounts are not required under Mississippi law, although Mr. McDaniel could seek to challenge the results through the courts.

Mr. Cochran’s victory was powered in part by African-Americans in areas of north Jackson whose turnout shattered that seen in those precincts in the primary. Turnout jumped fivefold at New Hope Baptist Church, and sevenfold at Green Elementary School, where only 14 voters came out on June 3 but about 100 showed up on Tuesday.

Their high numbers came despite pledges by conservative political action committees to monitor turnout in Democratic areas targeted by Mr. Cochran’s campaign. Both the N.A.A.C.P. — which sent its own poll watchers — and the United States Justice Department expressed concerns about the possible intimidation of black Democrats, but no irregularities were reported to Mississippi election officials. The state has no party registration, and anyone could vote in the Republican runoff who had not voted in the Democratic primary, which was won by former Representative Travis Childers, 56.

It was an extraordinary end to a wild campaign, with a Republican standing up for the rights of black Democrats, and with Tea Party groups from the North, especially the Senate Conservatives Fund, crying foul.

Also sure to inflame the right: a center-right super PAC, Defending Main Street, which contributed over $150,000 to Mr. Cochran during the runoff, received $250,000 from Michael Bloomberg in the same period, according to a source close to the former New York City mayor.

Continue reading the main story
REPUBLICAN PRIMARY

Mississippi – U.S. Senate

 

CANDIDATE VOTES PCT.
Thad CochranIncumbent 191,508 50.9%
Chris McDaniel 184,815 49.1
100% reporting

Mr. Bloomberg also contributed $250,000 to Mr Cochran’s super PAC, Mississippi Conservatives, before the primary.

For months, the contest between Mr. Cochran and Mr. McDaniel was viewed as this year’smain event in the six-year clash between conservative activists and Republican incumbents. Money and celebrities poured into Mississippi from all over the country, with the establishment determined to make the state a Tea Party Waterloo. For their part, conservative groups were hoping for one major victory for the season.

But after the surprise primary defeat this month of Representative Eric Cantor of Virginia, the House majority leader, the Mississippi contest took on greater significance. Outside conservative groups hoped to emerge with a second victory that would propel challenges in Tennessee, where Senator Lamar Alexander was widely expected to win, and perhaps in Kansas, where Senator Pat Roberts appeared to have recovered from an early stumble overwhether he lived in Kansas or the Washington area.

Instead, establishment Republicans and a surprisingly high number of Democrats helped deliver a come-from-behind victory for a senator known for his soft-spoken patrician air and his ability to bring home millions in dollars of federal spending.

Mr. Cochran shifted his campaign message from polishing his conservative credentials to extolling his record of keeping Mississippi flush with federal cash. He also attacked Mr. McDaniel for his vows of austerity, especially in education.

Photo

Senator Thad Cochran addressed supporters after winning Tuesday’s primary election.CreditEdmund D. Fountain for The New York Times

Those attacks seemed to work with voters — at least enough to spook Democrats, and even some Republicans, who are accustomed to the protection and seniority of a long line of Congress members going back almost 100 years, including Senators John C. Stennis, James Eastland and Trent Lott and Representatives Sonny Montgomery and Jamie L. Whitten.

Jeanie Munn, who lives in Hattiesburg, said Mr. McDaniel “represents a threat to the state.” She cited a vote he cast in the State Senate against a new nursing school building at the University of Southern Mississippi.

Roger Smith, a black Democrat who said he was being paid to organize for Mr. Cochran, said, “I don’t know too much about McDaniel other than what McDaniel’s saying: that he’s Tea Party, he’s against Obama, he don’t like black people.”

“You’re going to get one of the white guys in there,” he said. “You got to make a choice.”

In downtown Hattiesburg, Democratic voters trickled out of the Court Street United Methodist Church, saying they had voted for a Republican for the first time in their lives — Mr. Cochran. Heath Kleinke, 38, held his 4-month-old baby and said he wanted her to get a good education in Mississippi, something he believed would be made more difficult if Mr. McDaniel were to make good on his proposal to cut federal funding.

Continue reading the main storySlide Show

A Senator Turns Back a Challenge in Mississippi

Senator Thad Cochran of Mississippi celebrated his victory over a Tea Party-backed challenger, Chris McDaniel, at a party in Jackson on Tuesday.

 Edmund D. Fountain for The New York Times

“The fact that he openly criticizes Thad Cochran for talking to Democrats riled me up from the beginning,” added Mr. Kleinke, a graphic designer.

White Democrats also turned out for the senator. Dorothy McGehee, 88, a lifelong Democrat who registered blacks to vote in the civil rights era, found herself putting out Cochran yard signs in Meadville, Miss., and begging her friends to vote.

Kino Sintee, 17, and three black friends waved “Thad” signs on a street corner in a black Hattiesburg neighborhood. They said the preacher from Mount Olive Baptist Church asked them to help out.

“They’re talking about taking everything away from us,” he said. “People still need stuff.”

Photo

For months, the contest between Mr. Cochran and Mr. McDaniel was viewed as this year’s main event in the six-year clash between conservative activists and Republican incumbents.CreditWilliam Widmer for The New York Times

Michael Davis, 44, said it was his “duty” to stop Mr. McDaniel. “If anyone wants to tell me I’m stealing the election or something ludicrous like that, it doesn’t work that way,” he said.

In Tupelo, Miss., John Armistead, 73, a die-hard Democrat, and his wife, Sandra, 69, a Republican, put aside their differences on Tuesday, and both voted for Mr. Cochran.

“Even though he votes with the Republicans on virtually everything, I’ve never seen Cochran as being so partisan,” Mr. Armistead said. “As a Democrat, that’s important to me. McDaniel is very partisan and will align himself with the right-wing, partisan-type people.”

Those crossover votes from Democrats left many of Mr. McDaniel’s supporters seething.

“Our whole system is corrupt,” said a glum Alicia Holloman of George County as the last results trickled into the McDaniel party at the Hattiesburg Convention Center. “We deserve to be called the most corrupt state in the nation.”

Her husband, Michael, was more circumspect.

“You should be able to vote the way you want to vote. It’s fair,” he said. “But when you’re on the losing side, it stinks.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/06/25/us/politics/thad-cochran-chris-mcdaniel-mississippi-senate-primary.html?_r=0

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The Pronk Pops Show 285, June 25, 2014, Story 3: IRS Credibility Problem In Free Fall — Cover-Up and Stonewalling Continues — Republicans Are Still Not Asking The Right Questions To The Right Witnesses (IRS IT Supervisors) — Provide Us The Server Hard Drive Copies of Lois Lerner’s Emails — House Select Committee Needed Months Ago! — Games People Play — Videos

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Story 3: IRS Credibility Problem In Free Fall — Cover-Up and Stonewalling Continues — Republicans Are Still Not Asking The Right Questions To The Right Witnesses (IRS IT Supervisors) — Provide Us The Server Hard Drive Copies of Lois Lerner’s Emails — House Select Committee Needed Months Ago! —  Games People Play — Videos

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Joe South – Games people play

Oh the games people play now
Every night and every day now
Never meaning what they say now
Never saying what they mean

And they wile away the hours
In their ivory towers
Till they’re covered up with flowers
In the back of a black limousine

[Chorus:]
La-da da da da da da da
La-da da da da da de
Talking ’bout you and me
And the games people play

Oh we make one another cry
Break a heart then we say goodbye
Cross our hearts and we hope to die
That the other was to blame

Neither one will give in
So we gaze at our eight by ten
Thinking ’bout the things that might have been
It’s a dirty rotten shame

[Chorus]

People walking up to you
Singing glory hallelulia
And they’re tryin to sock it to you
In the name of the Lord

They’re gonna teach you how to meditate
Read your horoscope, cheat your faith
And further more to hell with hate
Come on and get on board

[Chorus]

Look around tell me what you see
What’s happening to you and me
God grant me the serenity
To remember who I am

Cause you’ve given up your sanity
For your pride and your vanity
Turns you sad on humanity
And you don’t give a da da da da da

Timeline on IRS Targeting Scandal and Suppression of Freedom of Speech and Assembly

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Scandal: The IRS canceled a contract with an email storage contractor weeks after Lois Lerner reported lost personal files and before other IRS officials had their hard drives crash as Tea Party-targeting investigations began.

Timing is everything, the saying goes, and sometimes the timing of events is also very curious, as in the case of the lost emails of Lerner and at least six other officials at the very same time the IRS canceled its contract to back up and preserve those emails as required by federal law.

Lerner’s computer supposedly crashed in June 2011, an alleged event the IRS concealed from the American public and congressional investigators for two years.

This event, which cannot be verified because her hard drive has since been destroyed and recycled, occurred just 10 days after House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Rep. Dave Camp first wrote a letter asking if the IRS was engaging in targeting of nonprofit groups.

This shouldn’t have been a problem because, as the Daily Caller reports, the IRS had a contract beginning in 2005 with Sonasoft, an email-archiving company based in San Jose, Calif.

The company advertises that it provides “Email Archiving Done Right” and “Point-Click Recovery” and in a 2009 tweet boasted: “The IRS uses Sonasoft to back up their servers, why wouldn’t you choose them to protect your servers?”

Perhaps this is what IRS Commissioner John Koskinen was referring to when in March testimony before the House Oversight Committee he assured Rep. Jason Chaffetz that the reason requested emails were difficult to provide was that IRS emails “get taken off and stored in servers.”

Later we would be told that the emails were lost forever and, as we noted, Koskinen was lying in March, when he said they were somewhere, or in June, when he said they were nowhere to be found. Let us ponder another possibility: that the emails were taken off and stored in Sonasoft servers, emails that would be deleted when the IRS contract for their storage ended. They were not lost, but, in effect, deliberately destroyed.

As John Hinderaker points out on his Powerline blog, it makes sense that Sonasoft might have deleted records it was no longer obligated to keep and that indeed it may have felt it was required to do so.

It also makes sense that the IRS knew and wanted that to happen. That Sonasoft was storing emails from the IRS Tea Party-targeting periods may have been the reason that Lerner mentioned only the loss of “personal files” and not any emails.

Sonasoft’s fiscal 2011 contract with the IRS ended Aug. 31, 2011. Eight days later, and about a month after Lerner’s computer allegedly crashed, the IRS officially severed its relationship with Sonasoft.

Three months later, IRS official Nikole Flax, who visited the White House more than 30 times, had her computer crash with a similar loss of critical emails, something that afflicted at least half-a-dozen IRS officials in a chain of events that defies logic and the smell test.

Hinderaker has a suggestion that also makes sense: “It wouldn’t hurt for a House committee to lay a subpoena on Sonasoft to learn more about the IRS’ dealings with that company and make certain that it doesn’t still have any IRS records.”

As we have suggested, it would also make sense to subpoena the emails received by anyone on Lerner’s contact list. The recipients would have copies of the emails they received from Lerner, incriminating emails whose destruction would be obstruction of justice to cover up a criminal conspiracy.

Read More At Investor’s Business Daily: http://news.investors.com/ibd-editorials/062314-705857-irs-cancelled-sonasoft-email-backup-contract.htm#ixzz35bIuEIub
Follow us: @IBDinvestors on Twitter | InvestorsBusinessDaily on Facebook

http://news.investors.com/ibd-editorials/062314-705857-irs-cancelled-sonasoft-email-backup-contract.htm

IRS CANCELLED Contract with Email-Storage Firm Weeks After Lerner’s Computer Crash

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) cancelled its longtime relationship with an email-storage contractor just weeks after ex-IRS official Lois Lerner’s computer crashed and shortly before other IRS officials’ computers allegedly crashed.

The IRS signed a contract with Sonasoft, an email-archiving company based in San Jose, California, each year from 2005 to 2010. The company, which partners with Microsoft and counts The New York Times among its clients, claims in its company slogans that it provides “Email Archiving Done Right” and “Point-Click Recovery.” Sonasoft in 2009 tweeted, “If the IRS uses Sonasoft products to backup their servers why wouldn’t you choose them to protect your servers?”

Sonasoft was providing “automatic data processing” services for the IRS throughout the January 2009 to April 2011 period in which Lerner sent her missing emails.

But Sonasoft’s six-year business relationship with the IRS came to an abrupt end at the close of fiscal year 2011, as congressional investigators began looking into the IRS conservative targeting scandal and IRS employees’ computers started crashing left and right.

Sonasoft’s fiscal year 2011 contract with the IRS ended on August 31, 2011. Eight days later, the IRS officially closed out its relationship with Sonasoft in accordance with the federal government’s contract close-out guidelines, which require agencies to fully audit their contracts and to get back any money that wasn’t used by the contractor. Curiously, the IRS de-allocated 36 cents when it closed out its contract with Sonasoft on September 8, 2011.

Lois Lerner’s computer allegedly crashed in June 2011, just ten days after House Ways and Means Committee chairman Rep. Dave Camp first wrote a letter asking if the IRS was engaging in targeting of nonprofit groups. Two months later, Sonasoft’s contract ended and the IRS gave its email-archiving contractor the boot.

IRS official and frequent White House visitor Nikole Flax allegedly suffered her own computer crash in December 2011, three months after the IRS ended its relationship with Sonasoft.

Here’s a Sonasoft commercial re-enacting how the company quickly and thoroughly saves its clients’ emails after computer crashes:

IRS chief scorched as ‘liar’

‘We are sick and tired of your game playing’

By Garth Kant

 

Oversight Committee Chairman Darrell Issa, R-Calif., wasted no time in accusing the head of the IRS of lying to Congress, unloading a blistering barrage of accusations at a Monday night hearing.

“At a minimum, you did not tell the whole truth,” during previous testimony, Issa told IRS Commissioner John Koskinen, scornfully adding, “We are wondering what your word is worth.”

In his opening statement, Issa flatly told Koskinen he had given false testimony by promising to provide all emails of former IRS tax-exempt division chief Lois Lerner, while knowing two years of those emails were actually missing.

“You promised to produce documents,” he said. “You did not.”

“The committee requested all of Lois Lerner’s emails over a year ago,” said the chairman, noting the emails had been subpoenaed in August 2013 and again in February 2014. But, Issa accused, “You worked to cover up the fact they were missing and only came forward to fess up on a Friday afternoon after you had been caught red-handed.”

Issa acknowledged Koskinen did not “personally did not destroy the emails. But by your actions and your deception, you now own this scandal.”

In a stunning admission under questioning from Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, Koskinen divulged that the IRS made no effort to recover Lerner’s email archive from the six month backups after her initial computer problems in June of 2011.

Koskinen had informed the committee that emails were not backed-up on a server, but on a tape that recorded emails for only six months.

So, Chaffetz simply asked, “When Lois Lerner figured out on June 13th (2011) that her computer crashed, and there have been emails showing that she was going to great lengths to try to get that recovered, why didn’t they just go to that six month tape?”

“Because that six month tape is a disaster recovery tape that has all of the emails on it and is a very complicated tape to actually extract emails for, but I have not seen any emails to explain why they didn’t do it, so it would be difficult, but I don’t know why,” replied the IRS boss.

“Did anybody try?” asked Chaffetz.

“I have no idea or indication that they did,” admitted Koskinen.

An incredulous Chaffetz then recounted, “So you have multiple emails showing she was trying to recover this, it’s the testimony of the IRS that they were trying desperately, in fact you got a forensic team to try to extract this, you went to great lengths, you made a big point over the last week about all the efforts you’re going through, but they were backed up on tape, and you didn’t do it?”

“As far as I know they did not,” the head of the IRS.

Earlier, Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, made a remark even more pointed than Issa’s accusation of lying, subtly suggesting during a heated exchange that Koskinen himself might come under investigation at some point.

Noting that the IRS learned about the loss of nearly two year’s worth of Lerner’s emails back in February, but had not informed Congress until ten days ago, Jordan wondered out loud, “At one point does it become obstruction of justice?”

“After days, weeks, or months?”

Jordan and other committee members were also tremendously frustrated that Koskinen continually maintained that he could not even remember who at the IRS told them about two years worth of missing emails.

The congressman was livid when the commissioner said his excuse was the IRS was in the “middle of filing season” in April.

When Jordan pointed out that the IRS informed Congress by burying the announcement of the missing emails on page 7 of a lengthy document on a Friday, Koskinen corrected him, saying it was page 5.

“Page 5!” Jordan yelled in mock-amazement, causing laughter to ripple through the hearing room. “Ridiculous,” he added.

Jordan also asked why Koskinen did not inform the FBI or the Justice Department of such an important find in a major investigation.

The IRS chief said that was because criminal charges had not been filed.

Issa later reminded him, for the record, that the Ways and Means Committee had referred four criminal counts against Lerner to the Justice Department.

Issa began the hearing by playing a video of Koskinen’s previous appearance before the House Oversight and Reform Committee on March 26, 2014.

The video contained a montage of GOP committee members demanding that Koskinen produce all of Lerner’s emails, including “every single email in the time period in the subpoena.”

“Will you commit to provide all those emails?” asked Jordan on the video.

“Yes, we will do that,” answered Koskinen, adding, “We never said we would not provide all the emails.”

Also in the video, GOP committee members stressed how crucial those emails were. They explained that was because Lerner had refused to testify before Congress (after invoking her Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination), making her emails the only records of her activities during the period she admitted to improperly targeting conservative groups applying for tax-exempt status.

After the video, Issa told the IRS chief, “We are sick and tired of your game playing.”

Issa later asked if Koskinen was aware on March 26, when he previously testified, that Lerner’s hard drive had crashed in June of 2011.

When Koskinen replied “No,” Issa asked if his IT people were aware of it, and the top tax man said, “Yes.”

Later, Rep. Ron DeSantis, R-Fla., reminded Koskinen that in his testimony Friday before the Ways and Means Committee, he acknowledged the IRS learned there was some kind of problem in February, because they had not found nearly as many of Lerner’s emails as they would have expected, in that time period.

Koskinen said the IRS knew in February but claimed he did not learn until April.

But, under further questioning, he admitted he did know there was an “issue” but did not know how serious a problem it was in February.

DeSantis remarked that did not seem like completely candid testimony.

Under questioning by a Democrat, Rep. Eleanor Holmes Norton, D-D.C., Koskinen issued a statement that stopped lawmakers in their tracks, claiming he believed that all of Lerner’s emails would be recovered.

Issa was so struck by the remark he interrupted to make sure he had heard correctly, asking Koskinen if he meant to say “all” of her emails or just “some?”

“All,” the IRS boss affirmed.

Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-S.C. took to task Koskinen for claiming there was no evidence of criminal wrongdoing before all the facts had been gathered.

“You have already said, multiple times today, that there was no evidence that you found of any criminal wrongdoing,” Gowdy said. “I want you to tell me, What criminal statutes you have evaluated?”

“I have not looked at any,” the IRS commissioner admitted.

“Well then how can you possibly tell our fellow citizens that there is no criminal wrongdoing if you don’t even know what statutes to look at?” a stunned Gowdy asked.

“Because I’ve seen no evidence that anyone consciously…” the IRS chief attempted to assert.

“Well how would you know what elements of the crime existed? You don’t even know what statutes are in play,” Gowdy continued, becoming more agitated. “I’m going to ask you again: What statutes have you evaluated?”

“I think you can rely on common sense,” said Koskinen.

“Common sense? Instead of the criminal code, you want to rely on common sense? No, Mr. Koskinen, you can shake your head all you want to, commissioner. You have said today that there’s no evidence of criminal wrongdoing and I’m asking you what criminal statutes you have reviewed to reach that conclusion.”

“I reviewed no criminal statutes,” said the commissioner.

Just before taking the hot seat in front of the committee, Koskinen spoke with WND, and the commissioner revealed the IRS had a plan to try to recover Lerner’s emails.

The IRS chief said the Treasury Department is now searching archives to see if it can find Lerner’s two years of missing emails.

After Koskinen sad the IRS only backs up six months worth of emails, WND asked if the same problem could happen again?

When Koskinen replied yes, WND asked if that wasn’t a fundamental problem, given the IRS requires taxpayers to keep seven years worth of records?

After admitting that was true, he then revealed the Tax Inspector General for Tax Administration, or TIGTA, was now looking into the archives to see if they could recover anything.

Koskinen said he notified TIGTA 10 days ago.

The commissioner also told WND that the company Sonasoft, which had a contract to archive IRS emails, was responsible only for the office of the Chief Counsel’s email, covering some 3,000 employees, not the entire agency.

When the subject of Sonasoft came up during the hearing, Issa asked Koskinen why the IRS did not have a reliable backup system.

The IRS chief said the estimated cost of $10-to-30 million was too much.

Expressing disbelief, Issa said, given the IRS’s $1.8 billion IT budget, should that not have been a priority?

“If we had the right resources, there would be a lot of priorities,” testily retorted Koskinen.

However, Rep. Scott Desjarlais, R-Tenn. pointed out that $10-to-30 million was not much compared to the $89 million the IRS paid in bonuses last year, including $1 million to employees who actually owed back taxes.

The rare evening hearing was convened following a dramatic revelation 10 days ago when the IRS claimed to learn in February that Lerner’s hard drive had crashed on, or around, June 13, 2011 – exactly three years earlier.

The IRS claimed the crash caused the loss of28 months of Lerner’s emails sent to addresses outside the IRS, from roughly mid-2009 to mid-2011, a crucial period for investigators.

Lerner’s emails to people outside the IRS are particularly important because she contacted members of the Department of Justice about the possibility of criminally prosecuting conservatives for their political activities.

The IRS claimed to have discovered the loss of Lerner’s emails in February, even though the investigation had been underway for almost a year.

In April, the IRS informed the Treasury Department, which then informed the White House.

But, without explanation, the IRS did not tell Congress and the public for another six weeks, until June 13.

An irate Jordan asked Koskinen to pledge he would find out who at the IRS told the Treasury Department about the missing emails.

“I will do my best,” a clearly hesitant Koskinen replied, which caused Jordan to scoff.

As recently as a meeting last Monday with Senate Finance Chairman Ron Wyden, D-Ore. and Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, Koskinen failed to inform investigators that the emails of six others IRS employees were missing, in addition to Lerner’s.

Koskinen withheld that information even though Hatch had asked the IRS chief to formally attest that all communications had been provided to Congress.

The IRS boss testified that he wanted to complete the collection of all of Lerner’s emails before informing Congress of the two years of missing emails, a claim that made GOP lawmakers howl with anger.

Something else that has congressional investigations very suspicious is the remarkable coincidence that Lerner’s supposed hard drive crash happened just 10 days after the very first time Congress asked the IRS whether it was targeting of conservatives.

Lerner’s reported her hard drive failed on, or around, June 13, 2011.

The first time the IRS learned Congress was looking into the targeting of conservatives was on June 3, 2011.

That means two years of Lerner’s communications disappeared just 10 days (or fewer) after Congress had made its first inquiry into the IRS targeting of conservatives, a coincidence that many GOP lawmakers found too suspicious to be happenstance.

On June 3, 2011, Ways ad Means Chairman Dave Camp, R-Mich., had sent a letter to IRS Commissioner Douglas Shulman questioning the agency’s investigations into donations to conservative nonprofits, upon which gift taxes were being imposed, as well as the agency’s audits of some 501(c)(4) organizations.

“Every aspect of this tax investigation, from the timing to the sudden reversal of nearly thirty years of IRS practice, strongly suggests that the IRS is targeting constitutionally protected political speech. The IRS must explain its actions or risk creating a chilling effect that threatens not only political advocacy groups, but all tax-exempt organizations that depend on contributions from individual donors,” wrote Camp.

Rep. Michael Turner, R-Ohio, suggested that lack of urgency on the part of IRS and Koskinen to find out what happened to Lerner’s emails suggested a coverup.

The congressman repeatedly asked why the commissioner had not called upon the FBI to investigate.

“We have Lois Lerner having invoked the Fifth in front of this committee, indicating that she’s fearful of criminal prosecution, which should be enough for you, a man of integrity, to pause and think, maybe crimes were committed within my agency. And now that these emails are missing, maybe someone not of integrity committed a crime in destroying them? You should call the FBI. You should call for a special prosecutor.”

” I cannot enter into Lois Lerner’s mind. I’ve never met her. As to what she…” Koskinen replied.

Turner countered, “I asked you to pick up the phone and call the FBI, not enter Lois Lerner’s mind.”

“I am not, I am not going to call the FBI. The inspector general has started. When the inspector general…” said the commissioner.

Turner said Koskinen’s own personal integrity was at stake if he did not call the FBI.

“I reject the suggestion that my integrity depends upon my calling the FBI. The inspector general will issue a report. We will all get the benefit of that report. And then we can determine what the appropriate action is to be,” insisted the commissioner.

But Turner wasn’t having it, concluding, “I have always believed that what happened in your agency with Lois Lerner is a crime. I believe that there were others involved. I believe the emails that are missing are the ones that would probably give us an ability to establish that. And I believe that somebody undertook criminal act in its destruction. And I believe that since you can’t tell me I’m wrong, and it’s enough of a doubt in your mind, as the commissioner of the agency you should call the FBI.”

Koskinen has been a major donor to Democratic candidates and groups, contributing $100,000 over four decades.

He has made a contributed to the Democratic candidate for president in every election since 1980, including $2,300 to Obama in 2008, and $5000 to Obama in 2012.

http://www.wnd.com/2014/06/irs-chief-scorched-as-liar/

 

 

 

‘We have a problem with you, and you have a problem maintaining your credibility’: House Republicans slam IRS commissioner as they subpoena a White House lawyer in ‘missing emails’ case

  • IRS Commissioner John Koskinen testified Monday in a rare evening hearing, just days after being called a liar in another House proceeding
  • He defended the IRS against insinuations that it covered up a political targeting scheme by burying inconvenient emails
  • Republicans say he lied in March when he promised to deliver copies of ‘all’ of former official Lois Lerner’s communications even though he knew of a 2011 computer crash that destroyed 28 months’ worth
  • Koskinen couldn’t explain why a six-month ‘disaster recovery’ backup wasn’t tapped to restore her emails after the computer crash
  • He complained that it would take $10 to $30 million to upgrade IRS computers to retain all its emails and documents; the agency paid $89 million in bonuses last year and has an $1.8 billion IT budget
  • House Oversight Committee Chairman Darrell Issa subpoenaed White House attorney Jennifer O’Connor on Monday to testify Tuesday morning
  • O’Connor, former counsel to the then-acting IRS commissioner, was invited to testify but the White House Counsel’s office refused to let her appear

By David Martosko, U.s. Political Editor

 

Republicans dropped a hammer on IRS Commissioner John Koskinen during a testy hearing on Monday night over the disappearance of emails tied to the agency’s tea party targeting scandal.

The emails, covering the period January 2009 to April 2011, belonged to embattled former official Lois Lerner and could shed light on whether an expansive scheme to single out conservative groups for special scrutiny was guided by members of Congress or administration officials outside the IRS.

‘The committee requested all of Lois Lerner’s emails over a year ago,’ said House Oversight Committee Chairman Rep. Darrell Issa. ‘And we subpoenaed the emails in August 2013 and again in February 2014. … You worked to cover up the fact they were missing and only came forward to fess up on a Friday afternoon after you had been caught red-handed.’

‘You personally did not cause the targeting,’ he told Koskinen, referring to the tea party scandal. ‘You personally did not destroy the emails. But by your actions and your deception, you now own this scandal.’

 

Rep. Darrell Issa slammed IRS Commissioner John Koskinen: 'We have a problem with you, and you have a problem maintaining your credibility'

Rep. Darrell Issa slammed IRS Commissioner John Koskinen: ‘We have a problem with you, and you have a problem maintaining your credibility’

No apologies: In a separate congressional hearing on Friday, IRS Commissioner John Koskinen insisted the loss of Lerner's emails was due to an oddly timed glitch

No apologies: In a separate congressional hearing on Friday, IRS Commissioner John Koskinen insisted the loss of Lerner’s emails was due to an oddly timed glitch

Spectator sport: The IRS hearing drew a line down the hallway and brought more than 199,000 viewers to an online video livestream

 

 

 

‘We have a problem with you,’ Issa sniped at the front end of a three-hour, 36-minute ordeal, ‘and you have a problem maintaining your credibility.’

Monday’s unusual evening hearing came as the result of a subpoena, and will continue Tuesday morning with a command performance from another Obama administration official.

Issa subpoenaed White House lawyer Jennifer O’Connor on Monday afternoon. He had invited her on Thursday to testify during the Tuesday session, but on Monday afternoon White House Counsel W. Neil Eggleston wrote Issa to say his underling would not appear.

Before O’Connor’s promotion to the White House Counsel’s office, she was counsel to then-Acting IRS Commissioner Danny Werfel.

Just ten days ago the IRS informed congressional investigators that a hard drive crash had destroyed 28 months of emails to and from Lerner, who led the IRS’s office in charge of vetting and policing tax-exempt nonprofit groups.

In an opening statement Monday night, Koskinen argued that ‘it is not unusual for computers anywhere to fail, especially at the IRS in light of the aged equipment IRS employees often have to use in light of the continual cuts in its budget these past four years.’

‘Since Jan. 1 of this year, for example,’ he claimed, ‘over 2,000 employees have suffered hard drive crashes.’

Koskinen referred several times on Monday to a lack of budget resources within the IRS, and raised the issue when asked why the agency didn’t do a better job keeping a backup of Lerner’s emails.

An outraged Issa insisted that Americans should be able to know ‘they’re being honestly treated by your employees, especially somebody at such a high level. Isn’t that in fact a priority that should have allowed for full retention?’

‘If we had the right resources, there would be a lot of priorities,’ Koskinen shot back.

‘So the American people should believe that if they don’t have the resources to pay their taxes, they shouldn’t pay their taxes’ Issa jabbed, ‘because if the IRS doesn’t have the resources, it won’t keep records?’

‘That’s pretty much what you’re telling us here tonight, is that resources are a question of whether or not you retain key documents.’

When Tennessee Republican Rep Scott DesJarlais asked Koskinen how much money it would take to replace the IRS’s computer systems in order to prevent another major data loss, he answered that it would cost between $10 and $30 million.

In a tense moment, DesJarlais then reminded him that the IRS paid $89 million in bonuses last year, including $1 million to agency employees who owed back taxes.

Issa added that the agency has an $1.8 billion information technology budget.

Koskinen said also that ‘the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration has already begun an investigation’ into the email losses.

‘His report will provide an independent review of the situation concerning Ms. Lerner’s computer crash three years ago.’

That’s the same inspector general unit that launched Lerner into the spotlight 13 months ago, with an audit of its ‘inappropriate’ use of keywords like ‘patriots’ and ‘tea party’ to identify tax-exemption applicants that would receive inordinate levels of screening.

Koskinen fended off accusations Monday night that he lied to Congress on March 26 when he promised the IRS would turn over all of Lerner's emails

Koskinen fended off accusations Monday night that he lied to Congress on March 26 when he promised the IRS would turn over all of Lerner’s emails

 

Utah Republican Rep. Jason Chaffetz asked Koskinen a question he couldn't answer:  Why didn't the IRS restore Lerner's emails from a six-month 'disaster recovery' backup tape?

Utah Republican Rep. Jason Chaffetz asked Koskinen a question he couldn’t answer: Why didn’t the IRS restore Lerner’s emails from a six-month ‘disaster recovery’ backup tape?

 

 

IRS comm: Getting Lois Lerner emails will take ‘years’

The result was a three-year period of intrusive screening of conservative groups while their liberal counterparts skated by and quickly received approval.

Issa’s committee staff prepared a video montage showing a cavalcade of Republicans during a March 26 hearing, demanding that Koskinen provide ‘all’ Lerner’s emails.

‘Yes, we will do that,’ the IRS commissioner is seen conceding

Issa tried to corner him Monday night, insisting that he ‘knew there was a problem with Lois Lerner’s emails when you came and testified in March.’

But Koskinen insisted that he had only been told that ‘there was an issue that no one knew the ramifications of.’

‘Somebody said, “There’s an odd development in the way the emails are showing up. We’re going to pull all her emails and investigate it”,’ he said. ‘The first time I knew that emails had been lost from her account was in April.’

‘All the emails that we have will be provided,’ he said moments later. ‘I did not say I would provide you emails that disappeared. If you have a magical way for me to do that, I’d be happy to know about it.’

‘My time has expired,’ Issa interjected while Koskinen continued to speak. ‘And I’ve lost my patience with you.’

Utah Rep. Jason Chaffetz needled Koskinen about a short-term data backup that the IRS had in place – but never used – when Lerner’s hard drive crashed in 2011.

‘It’s actually a disaster recovery system,’ the IRS commissioner testified, ‘and it backs up for six months in case the entire system goes down … That was the rule in 2011. Policy.’

Chaffetz wanted to know, ‘Why didn’t they just go to that six-month tape?’

Koskinen replied that it is ‘a disaster recovery tape that has all of the emails on it, and is a very complicated tape to actually extract emails [from], but I have not seen any emails to explain why they didn’t do it. So I – It would be difficult, but I don’t know why they didn’t do it.’

‘But you said that the IRS was going to extraordinary lengths to give it to the recovery team, correct?’ Chaffetz quizzed.

‘That’s correct,’ said Koskinen.

‘But it’s backed up – on tape?’

‘For six months, yes.’

‘So,’ Chaffetz asked, ‘why didn’t you get them off the backup?’

‘All I know about that is that the backup tapes are disaster recovery tapes that put everything in one lump,’ Koskinen replied, ‘and extracting individual emails out of that is very costly and difficult, and it was not the policy at the time.’

‘Did anybody try?’ Chaffetz asked the IRS commissioner.

‘I have no idea or indication that they did,’ came his answer.

 

Koskinen told Rep. Jim Jordan (L) that he couldn't remember who told him that Lerner's emails were lost

Koskinen told Rep. Jim Jordan (L) that he couldn’t remember who told him that Lerner’s emails were lost

 

Koskinen testified under subpoena just hours after the Oversight Committee subpoenaed yet another witness, a White House lawyer who was promoted from her previous job advising the IRS on how to respond to congressional inquiries

Koskinen testified under subpoena just hours after the Oversight Committee subpoenaed yet another witness, a White House lawyer who was promoted from her previous job advising the IRS on how to respond to congressional inquiries

In the March 26 hearing, Koskinen insisted that retrieving Lerner’s emails and submitting them to legal review – to make sure they don’t contain taxpayers’ private information – would take ‘years.’

‘They’re stored somewhere,’ he explained to Utah Rep. Jason Chaffetz during that hearing. ‘They get taken off and stored in servers and you’ve got 90-thousand employees. … We can find, and we are in fact searching – we can find Lois Lerner’s emails.’

Koskinen didn’t mention the 2011 computer crash at the time.

He said on Monday that he couldn’t remember who told him about it in April.

‘Remember, I’m running an agency with 90,000 people,’ he protested. ‘We are dealing with a whole – we’re in the middle of filing season as all of this is going on.’

Koskinen’s suggestion in March that the emails were stored on a remote server – not only on Lerner’s personal computer – has brought howls from Republicans, especially since he testified on Friday in a House Ways and Means Committee hearing that the emails were gone for good, and that the IRS had ‘recycled’ the hard drive.

Audible gasps echoed throughout the hearing room as he voiced that admission.

Agency guidelines require that ‘IRS offices will not store the official recordkeeping copy of e-mail messages that are federal records ONLY on the electronic mail system.’

The rules also require IRS offices to back up email messages to ‘a separate electronic recordkeeping system.’

Issa grills IRS Commissioner over ‘lost’ Lerner emails

 

Email Sheriff: Rep. Darrell Issa, a California Republican, has subpoenaed White House lawyer Jennifer O'Connor, the former chief counsel to then-acting IRS Commissioner Danny Werfel

Email Sheriff: Rep. Darrell Issa, a California Republican, has subpoenaed White House lawyer Jennifer O’Connor, the former chief counsel to then-acting IRS Commissioner Danny Werfel

 

Paul Ryan lays into the IRS for losing top officials’ emails

Koskinen has worn Republicans’ arrows as a badge of honor, insisting that he owes no apologies for being the bearer of bad news about a computer crash.

But during Friday’s Ways and Means hearing, Republican Rep. Paul Ryan insisted, ‘Nobody believes you.’

Three days later, the sparks continued to fly.

Massachusetts Democratic Rep. John Tierney apologized to Koskinen at one point, saying he couldn’t remember seeing ‘a display of this kind of disrespect in all the time I have been in Congress. It is unfortunate that anyone would be subjected to it.’

Issa cautioned Tierney ‘not to characterize the intent or the character of your fellow members here.’

‘But it’s fair game to question the integrity of the witness?’ Koskinen piped up.

‘The rules of the House,’ Issa clarified, speak only ‘to questioning the integrity of members.’

In another exchange, California Democratic Rep. Jackie Speier threatened to walk out unless the temperature of questions was reduced by several degrees.

‘I just want us to get back to basics,’ she said, ‘and to run this committee as it should be run, with respect and decorum.’

‘And badgering this commissioner, as virtually every member on the Republican side has done, is shameful. And it’s gotta stop.’

‘Or else, I’m telling you,’ Speier cautioned, ‘one member here is going to walk out and not return.’  

Flashback: IRS Commissioner Koskinen promises Lois Lerner’s…

Koskinen insisted that the IRS is working as fast as possible to give Congress all of Lerner's emails and won't apologize for the loss of countless documents because of a claimed computer crash

Koskinen insisted that the IRS is working as fast as possible to give Congress all of Lerner’s emails and won’t apologize for the loss of countless documents because of a claimed computer crash

Ohio Republican Rep. Jim Jordan then tried to edge in a question, asking in the prescribed way: ‘Will the gentlelady yield?’

‘The gentlelady is not yeilding,’ she responded.

‘Will the gentlelady please yield?’ Jordan tried again.

‘I’m sorry, I didn’t hear you,’ she responded.

‘I said, “Will the gentlelady please yield?”‘ Jordan repeated.

‘That was better,’ Speier grinned, ‘but no.’

Lois Lerner the former Director of Exempt Organizations at the IRS, is already charged with Contempt of Congress for refusing to answer a subpoena from Issa by testifying about a years-long scheme to use her agency to hamstring conservative organizations.

Issa said Monday on the Fox News Channel that Lerner presided over the targeting of tea party groups beginning in 2009 because President Barack Obama had made his opposition to the ‘Citizens United’ Supreme Court case well-known.

It was that federal case that cleared the way for a great amount of money to enter federal elections – some of which, congressional Democrats have charged, filters down to nonprofit groups that are forbidden to do any electioneering.

Republicans, however, see a partisan and politicized IRS picking winners and losers.

‘I believe Lois Lerner is hiding something,’ Issa said.

‘I believe the Justice Department, the IRS, and the White House are interested in her succeeding in hiding what she’s hiding, which is targeting of conservative groups based on their ideology in support of the president’s war on Citizens United, a Supreme Court decision that he didn’t like.’

‘This is something he vehemently opposes,’ Issa said, ‘and Lois Lerner acted on his opposition.’

He also suggested the Obama administration is aware that his committee’s investigation into the IRS is geting perilously close to the White House itself.

‘Could it lead to political operatives of the president?’ he asked. ‘Yes.’

 

Former Internal Revenue Service official Lois Lerner has invoked the Fifth Amendment twice while under subpoena to avoid testifying about her role in the tea party targeting scandal

Former Internal Revenue Service official Lois Lerner has invoked the Fifth Amendment twice while under subpoena to avoid testifying about her role in the tea party targeting scandal

 

The eleventh-hour subpoena of O’Connor has brought a flurry of late-night lawyering on both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue, with a House Oversight committee source telling MailOnline that she is legally required to testify on Capitol Hill at 9:30 a.m. Tuesday.

The hearing will commence with or without her, a committee staffer explained, but Republicans believe she will be there.

The White House did not immediately respond to a question about whether O’Connor will attend.

A frustrated Issa issued a statement Monday along with the O’Connor subpoena, complaining that ‘a year ago, when news broke that the IRS had targeted Americans because of their political beliefs, President Obama pledged, “we will work with Congress as it performs its oversight role”.’

‘I’m disappointed that one year later, the White House has attempted to block this Committee’s first request for voluntary cooperation from a White House official.’

As counsel to the acting IRS commissioner, he said, she ‘led the response to the Congressional targeting inquiry’ from the IRS.

‘She is uniquely qualified to explain why attorneys did not focus on and flag Lerner’s “lost” e-mails at the outset.’

Tuesday night’s hearing was the topic of robust discussion on Twitter and Facebook, with more than 199,000 people watching a livestream video broadcast of the proceedings.

IRS chief promises stricter rules for ‘dark money’ nonprofit groups

Expect new round of proposed regulations during early 2015

By Julie Patel

The Internal Revenue Service will propose new and specific rules defining how much money “social welfare” nonprofits may spend on political campaigns, Commissioner John Koskinen said Tuesday during an interview for an upcoming Center for Public Integrity investigative report.

Such rules could curb the influence of “dark money” nonprofits engaging in overt political activity that proliferated after the U.S. Supreme Court’s Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission decision in 2010.

The new rules would seek to define what constitutes political activity. The new regulations could also further regulate labor unions and trade associations — two kinds of politically active nonprofits that the IRS didn’t address in a highly contentious rulemaking attempt the agency itself short-circuited in May.

“There are three issues: What should be the definition, to whom should it apply and how much … can you do before you jeopardize your exemption?” said Koskinen, the IRS’ top official who took office in December.

The IRS asked for comments on all three issues but addressed only one in the first round of proposed regulations.

“The next resolution will differ from the first draft because it will deal with all three questions,” he said.

Sitting on Koskinen’s desk at IRS headquarters in Washington, D.C., was a 4-inch binder with 1,200 pages: a sampling of comments on all sides of the three issues.

He said he plans to personally read 85 to 100 comments and ultimately wants to see “regulations that are fair to everyone, clear and easy to administer.”

“We’d be much better off if we had clearer definitions and a clearer roadmap,” he said.

Such definitions, Koskinen said, wouldn’t just benefit the IRS but “people running 501(c)(4)s in terms of knowing what they can do and can’t do, what the rules are.” Nonprofit leaders, he added, shouldn’t get “surprised or concerned that when they undertake more of an activity that after the fact somebody is going to say, ’You’ve now jeopardized your exemption.’”

Koskinen said he expects a new draft of the regulations to be out by early 2015. At that point, people will be able to weigh in with additional comments in writing or at public hearings.

The IRS issued its first set of regulations, proposed in November, only to withdraw them this year after receiving more than 150,000 public comments. Many comments were highly critical and came not only from conservative organizations stung by the recent targeting of tea party-related and other nonprofit organizations but some liberal groups that feared the rules would affect nonpartisan activities, such as voter drives or candidate forums.

Social welfare groups, organized under Sec. 501(c)(4) of the U.S. tax code, must operate “exclusively to promote social welfare” and “primarily to further the common good and general welfare of the people of the community,” according to the IRS.

Some people have interpreted that to mean campaigning expenses may only constitute less than half of a “social welfare” nonprofit’s total expenses.

Koskinen explained that the IRS today determines whether a social welfare nonprofit is getting too political based on the “facts and circumstances” of each case. He acknowledged that this is “subjective” and makes it difficult for nonprofit leaders to determine “when are they getting too close to the line” with their politicking.

Koskinen didn’t say what, precisely, the IRS will propose as a political spending threshold for various nonprofits.

Without clear rules, politically active social welfare nonprofits — such as conservativeCrossroads GPS and liberal America Votes —  have largely operated without fear they’ll lose their tax exempt status or be forced to register as a political committees that must publicly reveal their funders. Labor unions and trade associations, like social welfare groups, are not required to disclose their donors.

http://www.publicintegrity.org/2014/06/18/14960/irs-chief-promises-stricter-rules-dark-money-nonprofit-groups?utm_source=iwatchnews&utm_medium=web&utm_campaign=rss&utm_reader=feedly

 

55+ CONSERVATIVE AND FREE MARKETS GROUPS URGE
CONGRESS TO STOP IRS 501(C)4 RULE IN OMNIBUS

January 9, 2014

Dear Members of Congress:

As the people’s duly elected representatives, it is imperative that Congress step in and stop the IRS from codifying its
suppression of conservative groups. This rogue agency can clearly not be left to police itself, and we therefore urge you
to include language in the omnibus appropriations bill to stop the IRS from pursuing rulemaking in this area and to
continue robust oversight of this agency.

The IRS confessed to targeting conservative groups in a stunning abuse of power. While initially blamed on a small
number of so-called “rogue agents” in Cincinnati, subsequent investigations revealed that high-level IRS officials in –
Washington, DC actually removed case files of conservative and tea party groups from Cincinnati to Washington, where
they stalled action for years, sent lengthy and intrusive questionnaires, and undermined the rights of association and
speech of conservatives.

Nobody has been held accountable for these outrageous abuses. Indeed, the apparent ringleader of the suppression
scheme, Lois Lerner, was granted six months of paid administrative leave and then allowed to retire with her full
pension. Suppression of political dissent has been rewarded. Even worse, the IRS now proposes not to rectify its own
misbehavior, but to blame the victims and effectively codify its own misdeeds by adopting draconian limitations on the
free speech rights of 501(c)4 social welfare groups via regulation.

The IRS proposal would restrict the free speech rights of such groups by arbitrarily deeming political a wide variety of
activities in the newly-created category of “Candidate-Related Political Activity,” which includes voter registration drives,
candidate debates, voter guides, voting records and key votes. They would restrict any criticism of an incumbent
federal, state, or local politician within 30 days of a primary or 60 days of a general election and effectively require
groups to remove any reference to politicians from their websites during these windows. They even distort the
definition of “candidate” to include appointees, so groups weighing in on executive or judicial nominations would be
restricted.

These draconian rules will effectively muzzle 501(c)4 groups in the run-up to November’s mid-term elections while
unfairly exempting 501(c)5 labor unions that support liberal candidates and causes.

The rules proceed from the assumption that political engagement and discussion of health care, government spending,
and other public policy issues and the merits of nominees who implement them cannot logically be part and parcel of a
social welfare mission. This is not what the law requires and it is inconsistent with longstanding historical practice and
understanding.

While Section 501(c)(3) of the tax code specifically bars those organizations from engaging in political activity, no such
statutory prohibition exists in Section 501(c)(4). For half a century the IRS has defined “social welfare” in our democratic
society to include activities such as nonpartisan get-out-the-vote drives, voter registration, and voter education on
issues of public concern.

The 501(c)(4) category has always been the home of groups that advocate public policy and hold politicians accountable
for the policies they pursue at every level of government. The IRS is disregarding these facts and severely limiting rights
of association and speech, especially for smaller grassroots groups that cannot easily afford high-priced lawyers to
navigate complex new rules.

This latest IRS power grab must be stopped, and we urge you to do so in the omnibus appropriations bill.

Sincerely,
Jim Martin
Chairman
60 Plus Association

Melissa Ortiz
Founder/Principal
Able Americans

Phil Kerpen
President
American Commitment

Dan Schneider
Executive Director
American Conservative Union

Thomas Pyle
President
American Energy Alliance

Sandy Rios
Director of Governmental Affairs
American Family Association

Mark Fitzgibbons
President of Corporate Affairs
American Target Advertising, Inc.

Gary L. Bauer
President
American Values

Brent Gardner
Director of Federal Affairs
Americans for Prosperity

Grover Norquist
President
Americans for Tax Reform

John Tate
President
Campaign for Liberty

Susan Carleson
Chairman/President
Carleson Center Welfare Reform
Action Fund

Sean Noble
President
Center to Protect Patient Rights
Jeffrey Mazzella
President
Center for Individual Freedom

Matt Patterson
President
Center for Worker Freedom

Elaine Donnelly
President
Center for Military Readiness*

Frank J. Gaffney, Jr.
President
Center for Security Policy*

Tom Minnery
President
CitizenLink

Chris Chocola
President
Club for Growth

Gary Aldrich
President and Chairman of the
Board
CNP Action, Inc.

Penny Nance
President and CEO
Concerned Women for America
Legislative Action Committee

Peter J. Thomas
Chairman
The Conservative Caucus

Mattie Duppler
Executive Director
Cost of Government Center

Thomas A. Schatz
President
Council for Citizens Against
Government Waste

Christopher J. Conover, PhD
Research Scholar
Center for Health Policy &
Inequalities Research*
Duke University*
Katie McAuliffe
Executive Director
Digital Liberty

Brian Baker
President
Ending Spending

Ralph Reed
Chairman
Faith & Freedom Coalition

Larry Cirignano
President
Faithful Catholic Citizens

Dick Patten
President
Family Business Defense Council

Paul Caprio
Executive Director
Family Pac Federal

Kenneth R. Timmerman
President & CEO
Foundation for Democracy in Iran

James S. Gilmore III
President
Free Congress Action

Coley Jackson
President
Freedom Action

Matt Kibbe
President
FreedomWorks

George Landrith
President
Frontiers of Freedom

Aaron Stover
Director of Development, Eastern
Region
The Heartland Institute

Michael Needham
Chief Executive Officer
Heritage Action
Mario H. Lopez
President
Hispanic Leadership Fund

Michael Smith, Esq.
President
Home School Legal Defense
Association

Heather R. Higgins
President
Independent Women’s Voice

Andrew Langer
President
Institute for Liberty

Seton Motley
President
Less Government

Colin A. Hanna
President
Let Freedom Ring

Christopher Arps
Co-Founder
Move-On-Up.org

Lew Uhler
President
National Tax Limitation
Committee

Pete Sepp
Executive Vice President
National Taxpayers Union

Dave Wallace, II
Founder
Restore America’s Mission

Ken Hoagland
Chairman
Restore America’s Voice

Lawrence A. Hunter
President
Social Security Institute

David Williams
President
Taxpayers Protection Alliance

Judson Phillips
President
Tea Party Nation

Amy Kremer
Chairman
Tea Party Express

Jenny Beth Martin
Co-Founder
Tea Party Patriots

Todd Cefaratti
Founder
TheTeaParty.Net

C. Preston Noell III
President
Tradition, Family, Property, Inc.

Carl Bearden
Executive Director
United for Missouri

Morton Blackwell
Chairman
The Weyrich Lunch

Ron Robinson
President
Young America’s Foundation

Terry T. Campo
President
YR Alumni Network, Inc.

*Affiliations for identification purposes only.

 

THE IRS SCANDAL: TIMELINE

In May 2013, it was learned that from April 2010 to April 2012, the Internal Revenue Service had placed on hold the processing of applications for tax-exempt status that it had received from hundreds of organizations with such presumably conservative indicators as “Tea Party,” “Patriots,” or “9/12” in their names. During that period, the IRS approved only four applications from conservative groups while green-lighting applications from several dozen organizations whose names included the likely left-leaning terms “Progressive,” “Progress,” “Liberal,” or “Equality.”

In February 2014, it was further learned that of the
already-existing nonprofits that were flagged for IRS surveillance (including monitoring of the groups’ activities, websites, and any other publicly available information), 83% were conservative. And, of the groups that the IRS selected for audit, 100% were conservative.

This section of Discover The Networks provides a timeline of this illegal, blatantly partisan practice by the IRS.

February to March 2010: An email string from February – March 2010 includes a message from a California Exempt Organizations Determinations manager discussing a Tea Party application “currently being held in the Screening group.” The manager urges, “Please let ‘Washington’ know about this potentially embarrassing political case involving a ‘Tea Party’ organization. Recent media attention to this type of organization indicates to me that this is a ‘high profile’ case.”  A co-worker responds: “I think sending it up here [DC] is a good idea given the potential for media interest.” (Source)

March 31 to April 1, 2010: Colleen Kelley, president of the National Treasury Employees Union (NTEU)—the 150,000-member union that represents employees of the IRS and 30 other government agencies—visits President Obama at the White House. NTEU’s Political Action Committee endorsed Obama in both 2008 and 2012, and gave hundreds of thousands of dollars in the 2010 and 2012 election cycles to anti-Tea Party candidates. (Source)

The day after Colleen Kelley’s White House visit, IRS employees begin applying extra scrutiny to tax-exempt-status applications from conservative organizations whose names contain the words “Tea Party,” “Patriot,” “9-12,” “’Take Back the Country,” or “We the People.” (Source and Source)

July 6, 2010: IRS official Holly Paz writes an email to Washington-based IRS lawyer Steven Grodnitzky “to let Cindy and Sharon know how we have been handling Tea Party applications in the last few months.” Grodnitzky replies to the email, confirming that the Washington-based Exempt Organization Technical unit (EOT) is designing the targeting in the nation’s capital.

“EOT is working the Tea party applications in coordination with Cincy. We are developing a few applications here in DC and providing copies of our development letters with the agent to use as examples in the development of their cases,” Grodnitzky writes.

“Chip Hull [another lawyer in IRS headquarters] is working these cases in EOT and working with the agent in Cincy, so any communication should include him as well. Because the Tea party applications are the subject of an SCR [Sensitive Case Report], we cannot resolve any of the cases without coordinating with Rob,” Grodnitzky writes. [“Rob” is believed to be then-IRS director of rulings and agreements Rob Choi, based at the agency’s Washington headquarters.] 
(Source)

August 2010: The IRS issues its first “BOLO” (“Be On The Lookout”) alert for “various local organizations in the Tea Party movement” that are seeking tax-exempt status as 501(c)(3) and 501(c)(4) groups. The IRS is also flagging applications by organizations that: (a) address such issues as government spending, government debt, and taxes; (b) promote the use of education, advocacy, and lobbying to “make America a better place to live”; or (c) criticize how the country is being run by the Obama administration. (Source and Source)

October 2010: In a meeting arranged at the direction of Jack Smith, chief of the Justice Department’s Public Integrity Section, the DOJ asks IRS official Lois Lerner to help the Department build criminal cases against conservative nonprofit groups that have been conducting political activity. (Source)

Winter 2010-2011: Judith Kindell, senior advisor to IRS Exempt Organizations Division Director Lois Lerner, tells IRS attorney Carter Hull, who oversaw the review of some tax-exemption applications by conservative Tea Party groups, that the IRS Chief Counsel’s office — headed by Obama appointee William Wilkins — will henceforth need to review all applications from conservative groups whose names contain the aforementioned trigger words. According to Hull, this is the first time in his 48-year career at the IRS that he has been instructed to forward any tax-exemption applications to another office. (Source and Source)

February 2011: In an email, IRS Exempt Organizations Division Director Lois Lerner Lerner advises her staff—including then Exempt Organizations Technical Manager Michael Seto and then Rulings and Agreements director Holly Paz—that a Tea Party matter is “very dangerous,” and that this is something “Counsel and [Lerner adviser] Judy Kindell need to be in on.” Lerner adds that Tea Party groups’ tax-exemption applications could end up being the “vehicle to go to court” to get more clarity on a 2010 Supreme Court ruling on campaign finance rules. Thus, at this point, Lerner—contrary to false statements she will subsequently make—is well aware of the fact that groups with “Tea Party,” “Patriot,” or “9/12 Project” in their names are being flagged for additional and often burdensome scrutiny by the IRS. (Source and Source)

February 2011: In an email to Lois Lerner, a Federal Election Commission (FEC) investigator inquires about the status of the tax-exemption application of the American Future Fund, a conservative group. (The FEC and IRS have no authority to share this information under section 6103 of the Internal Revenue Code.) Soon after this FEC inquiry, the American Future Fund receives a questionnaire from the IRS. (Source)

June 3, 2011:
 David Camp, Republican Chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, sends a letter to then-IRS Commissioner Douglas Shulman inquiring about a report that the IRS has been conducting an unusually large number of audits of conservative 501(c)(4) groups and taxpayers who have donated money to them. Lawmakers will subsequently send at least seven more letters asking the IRS to address complaints that conservative groups applying for tax-exempt status are being subjected to burdensome screening. (Source and Source)

June 13, 2011: Lois Lerner’s computer allegedly crashes, causing all emails that Lerner sent and received between January 2009 and April 2011, to be lost. (Source)

July 1, 2011: The IRS responds to David Camp’s June 3 letter by stating that its “actions in this area were in no way influenced by political considerations.” According to the Agency, Exempt Organizations Division Director Lois Lerner has ordered the criteria for flagging tax-exempt applications for extra scrutiny to be changed, so as to apply more broadly to “organizations involved with political, lobbying, or advocacy for exemption under 501(c)(3) or 501(c)(4).” (Source)

August 4, 2011: Staffers in the IRS’s Rulings and Agreements office hold a meeting with the Chief Counsel’s office which is headed by William Wilkins. At this meeting, Wilkins is made aware that conservative groups are being targeted by the IRS. Appointed by President Obama in 2009, Wilkins is one of only two presidential appointees in the entire agency. In subsequent interviews, IRS lawyer Carter Hull, who oversaw the review of some tax-exemption applications by conservative Tea Party groups, tells congressional investigators that his superiors have told him that Wilkins’ office needs to be involved in additional reviews of previously screened tax-exemption applications because of “potential political activity.” (Source and Source)

September 8, 2011: The IRS abruptly cancels its longtime (2005-11) relationship with Sonasoft, a San Jose-based email-archiving company and email-storage contractor specializing in quickly and thoroughly saving its clients’ emails after computer crashes. (Source)

Note: Federal law (the Federal Records Act) requires the IRS to keep records of all agency emails and to print out hard copies of those correspondences to ensure that they get saved in the event of a computer mishap. An instructional page for employees on the IRS website states:

“The Federal Records Act applies to email records just as it does to records you create using other media. Emails are records when they are: Created or received in the transaction of agency business; Appropriate for preservation as evidence of the government’s function and activities; or Valuable because of the information they contain.

“If you create or receive email messages during the course of your daily work, you are responsible for ensuring that you manage them properly. The Treasury Department’s current email policy requires emails and attachments that meet the definition of a federal record be added to the organization’s files by printing them (including the essential transmission data) and filing them with related paper records. If transmission and receipt data are not printed by the email system, annotate the paper copy.

“Please note that maintaining a copy of an email or its attachments within the IRS email MS Outlook application does not meet the requirements of maintaining an official record. Therefore, print and file email and its attachments if they are either permanent records or if they relate to a specific case.” (Source)

October 6, 2011: Charles Boustany, Chairman of the House Ways and Means Oversight Subcommittee, sends a letter to IRS Commissioner Douglas Shulman requesting information about the agency’s dealings with the tax-exempt sector.  (Source)

November 18, 2011: The IRS responds to Chairman Boustany by providing some of the information he requested, but makes no mention of any knowledge that conservative groups are being targeted. (Source)

December 16, 2011: House Ways and Means Oversight Subcommittee members meet with Exempt Organizations Division Director Lois Lerner and other IRS staff. Neither Lerner nor her colleagues mention that their agency has targeted conservative groups. (Source and Source)

January 2012: The IRS begins sending follow-up letters requesting that conservative groups applying for tax-exempt status provide voluminous and sensitive information, such as the names of all donors and the amounts of all their donations; a list of all issues important to the groups; an explanation of where the groups stand on those issues; and all emails sent to members of the groups. (Source)

February 24, 2012: During a briefing on the onerous follow-up letters received by some conservative organizations, Oversight and Government Reform Committee staffers ask IRS Exempt Organizations Division Director Lois Lerner whether the criteria for evaluating tax-exempt applications have changed at any point. Lerner replies that the criteria have not changed. (Source)

February 29, 2012: The IRS issues a 60-day extension (for compliance) to all groups that have received follow-up letters, and Lerner orders that no additional developmental letters be sent. (Source)

March 1, 2012: Charles Boustany, Chairman of the House Ways and Means Oversight Subcommittee, sends a follow-up letter to IRS Commissioner Douglas Shulman with additional queries about reports that “the IRS has been questioning new tax-exempt applicants, including grassroots political entities such as Tea Party groups.” (Source)

March 1, 2012 – Top IRS officials meet to discuss media reports that conservative groups seeking tax-exempt status are being harassed/targeted. (Source)

March 12, 2012: The IRS responds to Boustany’s letter with no mention of any knowledge that conservative groups are being targeted. (Source)

March 12, 2012: Democratic Senators Charles Schumer, Michael Bennet, Sheldon Whitehouse, Jeff Merkley, Tom Udall, Jeanne Shaheen, and Al Franken write a letter calling on the IRS to scrutinize conservative groups allegedly masquerading as 501(c)(4) “social welfare organizations.” A press release from Senator Schumer’s office, asserting that “the lack of clarity in the IRS rules has allowed political groups to improperly claim 501(c)4 status and may even be allowing donors to these groups to wrongly claim tax deductions for their contributions,” summarizes the terms of the letter:

“We urge the IRS to take these steps immediately to prevent abuse of the tax code by political groups focused on federal election activities.  But if the IRS is unable to issue administrative guidance in this area then we plan to introduce legislation to accomplish these important changes.” (Source)

March 22, 2012: The House Ways and Means Oversight Subcommittee holds its regularly scheduled 2012 hearing on the tax-return filing season and general IRS operations. Chairman Charles Boustany asks then-IRS Commissioner Douglas Shulman about reports that the IRS has been targeting Tea Party groups. Shulman responds, “I can give you assurances…[t]here is absolutely no targeting.”  (Source,SourceSource, and Source)

March 23, 2012: The IRS sends a supplementary response (containing additional information) to the House Ways and Means Oversight Subcommittee, and again makes no mention of any knowledge that conservative groups are being targeted. (Source)

March 27, 2012: Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa and Subcommittee Chairman Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) send Exempt Organizations Division Director Lois Lerner a letter requesting information related to the reports that conservative groups applying for tax-exempt status have been receiving extra scrutiny from the IRS. (Source)

March 2012: Oversight and Government Reform Committee representatives meet with staffers from the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) to discuss IRS policies for scrutinizing organizations applying for tax-exempt status. In response, then-Deputy Commissioner for Services and Enforcement Steven Miller directs the IRS to launch an internal review of the actions taken by the Exempt Organizations Division. (Source)

March 30, 2012: Democratic Sen. Carl Levin, chairman of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs’ permanent subcommittee on investigations, writes a March 30, 2012 letter to then-IRS commissioner Douglas Shulman discussing the “urgency” of the issue of possible political activity by nonprofit applicants. Levin asks if the IRS has been sending out additional information requests to applicant groups, and he cites an IRS rejection letter to a conservative group as an example of how the IRS should be conducting its business.

“Some entities claiming tax-exempt status as social welfare organizations under 26 U.S.C.&501(c)(4) appear to be engaged in political activities more appropriate for political organizations claiming tax-exempt status under 26 U.S.C.&527,” Sen. Levin writes. “Because of the urgency of the issues involved in this matter, please provide the following information by April 20, 2012.”

Levin asks ”if it is not provided on a routine basis, approximately what percentage of such applicants receive an IRS questionnaire seeking information about any political activities, and how the IRS determines whether and when to send that questionnaire; and approximately how many days after an application is filed that questionnaire is typically sent.”

Levin cites a 1997 IRS rejection letter to the conservative group National Policy Forum, formed by former Republican National Committee chairman Haley Barbour, and asks Shulman, “Is it still the position of the IRS that a 501(c)(4) organization cannot engage in any partisan political activity, even as a secondary activity?” (Source)

April 4, 2012: During a telephone briefing, Lois Lerner tells Oversight and Government Reform Committee staff that the information which the IRS has been requesting in its additional follow-up letters to conservative groups applying for tax-exempt status is not beyond the bounds of ordinary practice. (Source)

April 23, 2012: House Ways and Means Oversight Subcommittee Chairman Charles Boustany and 61 other House Republicans send a letter to IRS Deputy Director Steven Miller, inquiring about discriminatory practices against conservative groups. (Source and Source)

April 23, 2012: IRS Chief Counsel William Wilkins, who was appointed by President Obama in 2009, meets with Obama in the Roosevelt Room of the White House. (Source)

April 24, 2012: IRS Commissioner Douglas Shulman (William Wilkins’ boss) and two other IRS officials—Shulman’s chief-of-staff and political aide Jonathan Davis and IRS spokesman Frank Keith—meet for eight-and-a-half hours with a top White House official, Office of Management and Budget (OMB) director Jeffrey Zients, at the Eisenhower Executive Office Building located at the White House complex. (Source and Source)

April 25, 2012: The IRS Chief Counsel’s office (led by William Wilkins) sends Washington-based IRS officials new guidelines on how to scrutinize Tea Party and conservative groups applying for tax-exempt status. (Source)

April 26, 2012: The IRS sends a second supplementary response to the House Ways and Means Oversight Subcommittee but includes no information about its practice of targeting conservative groups. (Source)

April 26, 2012: Exempt Organizations Division Director Lois Lerner, responding to the March 27th letter from Chairmen Issa and Jordan, writes that the IRS letters to targeted conservative organizations were “in the ordinary course of the application process to obtain the information as the IRS deems necessary to make a determination whether the organization meets the legal requirements for tax-exempt status.” (Source)

May 3, 2012: The IRS, having completed its own internal review of the targeting scandal, concludes that there has been a substantial, inappropriate bias against conservative groups seeking tax-exempt status. IRS Deputy Director Steven Miller is informed of this finding. (SourceSource, and Source)

May 15, 2012: IRS Acting Commissioner Steven Miller identifies two “rogue” employees in the agency’s Cincinnati office as being mainly responsible for the “overly aggressive” handling of requests by conservative groups for tax-exempt status. Miller says the staffers have already been disciplined. (Source)

May 2012: David Camp, Republican Chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, sends a letter to IRS Commissioner Douglas Shulman requesting copies of all 501(c)(4) applications from 2010 and 2011. (Source)

May 2012: In 45-page letters to two lawmakers who inquired about the IRS targeting of conservative groups, Exempt Organizations Division Director Lois Lerner makes no mention of any such practice. (Source)

May 2012: IRS officials determine that there were seven types of information asked of conservative applicants, including donor information, that were inappropriate. (Source)

June 4, 2012: In response to Sen. Carl Levin’s March 30, 2012 letter, then-IRS deputy commissioner Steven T. Miller sends Levin a 16-page response explaining that the flexibility of IRS rules allow for the agency to “prepare individualized questions and requests.”

“There is no standard questionnaire used to obtain information about political activities,” Miller writes. “Although there is a template development letter that describes the general information on the case development process, the letter does not specify the information to be requested from any particular organization … Consequently, revenue agents prepare individualized questions and requests for documents relevant to the application. . .” (Source and Source)

June 4, 2012: The Inspector General (IG) informs the Treasury Department’s general counsel that he has been auditing the IRS’s screening of politically active groups seeking tax exemptions. The IG then gives the same information to Deputy Treasury Secretary Neal Wolin “shortly after.” This means that Obama administration officials are now fully aware of the matter. (Source)

June 14, 2012: In an email to IRS official Lois Lerner and others, Treasury official Ruth Madrigal writes: “Don’t know who in your organizations is keeping tabs on c4s, but since we mentioned potentially addressing them (off-plan) in 2013, I’ve got my radar up and this seemed interesting…”

This email demonstrates that the Treasury Department and Lerner have been conspiring to draft new 501(c)(4) regulations to restrict the activity of conservative groups in a manner that would be “off-plan” — meaning that they would not be disclosed publicly and would not be published on the public schedule. According to the Daily Caller:

“The rules place would place much more stringent controls on what would be considered political activity by the IRS, effectively limiting the standard practices of a wide array of non-profit groups…. The new rules define more previously acceptable activities by nonprofit groups as prohibited ‘candidate-related political activity.’ Communications and activities including voter registration drives and publishing voter guides, among others, are now classified as political activity. Grants and donations that 501(c)(4)’s give to other nonprofits are now subject to new record-keeping and increased scrutiny to prevent the money’s use for broadly-defined political activity.”  (Source)

June 15, 2012: IRS Deputy Director Steven Miller responds to an April 23 lettersigned by Charles Boustany, Chairman of the House Ways and Means Oversight Subcommittee, and 61 other House Republicans, but includes no information about the IRS’s discriminatory practices against conservative groups. Stating generally that the IRS has recently been seeing more tax-exempt applications from politically active groups and has been striving to “coordinate the handling of the case to ensure consistency,” Lerner does not concede that conservatives have been singled out. (Source and Source)

June 25, 2012: The House Ways and Means Oversight Subcommittee holds ahearing on charitable organizations. When asked about IRS harassment of conservative groups, IRS Deputy Director Steven Miller makes no reference to any discriminatory practices but says: “I am aware that some two hundred 501(c)(4) applications fell into this category [the determinations letter process]. We did group those organizations together to ensure consistency, to ensure quality.” During his testimony, Miller does not disclose what he was told on May 3 regarding the targeting of Tea Party groups. (Source and Source)

July 10, 2012: Sharon Light, then-advisor to Exempt Organizations Division Director Lois Lerner, emails Lerner a National Public Radio story on how outside money was making it difficult for Democrats to hold onto their Senate majority. The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee has already complained to the Federal Election Commission (FEC) that conservative groups should be treated as political committees, rather than as tax-exempt social welfare groups. “Perhaps the FEC will save the day,” Ms. Lerner replies later that morning in an email. (Source)

July 30, 2012: In a letter, Senator Carl Levin singles out 12 groups he wants investigated for “political activity.” Of the groups, only one – Priorities USA – is left-leaning. (Source)

September 11, 2012: IRS Deputy Commissioner Steven Miller writes a letter responding to Senator Orrin Hatch, the top Republican on the Senate Finance Committee, who has already written three times to the IRS about complaints related to the targeting of conservative groups. Miller again does not acknowledge the scrutiny to which conservative groups were subjected. (Source)

September 27, 2012: Senator Carl Levin asks for copies of the answers to IRS exemption application question 15 – a question about planned political expenditures – from four specific groups: Crossroads Grassroots Policy Strategies, Priorities USA, Americans for Prosperity, and Patriot Majority USA. (Source)

October 17, 2012: IRS Deputy Commissioner Steven Miller informs Senator Carl Levin, “As discussed in our previous responses dated June 4, 2012, and August 24, 2012, the IRS cannot legally disclose whether the organizations on your list have applied for tax exemptions unless and until such application is approved.” Miller, however, then informs Levin that Americans for Prosperity and Patriot Majority have been approved, but the IRS has no records for Crossroads and Priorities USA. (Source)

October 23, 2012: Senator Carl Levin writes to again express his dissatisfaction with the IRS handling of “social welfare” (501(c)(4) organizations insisting that IRS guidance “misinterprets the law” by allowing any political activity. He again demands an answer as to whether the four organizations he listed in his previous letter (of September 27, 2012) were primarily engaged in the promotion of social welfare. He also seeks copies of tax exempt revocation letters sent due to c4 political activities, as well as statistics on how many c4s have been notified that they may be in violation due to political activities. (Source)

Fall 2012: Pursuant to a request by David Camp, Republican Chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, the IRS makes all 501(c)(4) applications from 2010 and 2011 available to that Committee. (Source)

November 11, 2012 – Douglas Shulman steps down as IRS Director and is replaced by Steven Miller. (Source)

November 15, 2012: Exempt Organizations Division Director Lois Lerner and IRS staffers meet with House Ways and Means Committee staff but again do not mention their knowledge about the targeting of conservative groups. (Source andSource)

March 15, 2013 – New Treasury Secretary Jack Lew is informed of the IRS targeting probe. (Source)

March 27, 2013: In an email to a top staffer at the IRS, Lois Lerner writes: “As I mentioned yesterday — there are several groups of folks from the FEC [Federal Election Commission] world that are pushing tax fraud prosecution for [501]c4s who report they are not conducting political activity when they are (or these folks think they are). One is my ex-boss Larry Noble (former General Counsel at the FEC), who is now president of Americans for Campaign Reform. This is their latest push to shut these down. One IRS prosecution would make an impact and they wouldn’t feel so comfortable doing the stuff. So, don’t be fooled about how this is being articulated – it is ALL about 501(c)(4) orgs and political activity.” (Source)

April 2, 2013: Lois Lerner sends an email to internal IRS investigators that tries to explain the “Be on the Lookout” (BOLO) criteria used to select organizations for screening and scrutiny:

Because the BOLO only contained a brief reference to “Organizations involved with the Tea Party movement applying for exemption under 501(c)(3) and 501(c)(4)” in June 2011, the EO Determinations manager asked the manager of the screening group, John Shafer [IRS Cincinnati field office manager], what criteria were being used to label cases as “tea party ” cases. (“Do the applications specify/state ‘ tea party’? If not, how do we know applicant is involved with the tea party movement?”) The screening group manager asked his employees how they were applying the BOLO’s short –hand reference to “tea party.” His employees responded that they were including organizations meeting any of the following criteria as falling within the BOLO’s reference to “tea party” organizations: “1. ‘Tea Party’, ‘Patriots’ or ’9/12 Project’ is referenced in the case file. 2. Issues include government spending, government debt and taxes. 3. Educate the public through advocacy/legislative activities to make America a better place to live. 4. Statements in the case file that are critical of the how the country is being run. . . “

So, we believe we have provided information that shows that no one in EO “developed” the criteria. Rather, staff used their own interpretations of the brief reference to “organizations involved with the Tea Party movement,” which was what was on the BOLO list.

Lerner neglects to mention that her office was “developing” the applications for all Tea Party groups. (Source)

April 9, 2013: Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) chairs a hearing  in which he discusses the abuse of the 501(c)(4) tax-exempt designation. During that hearing, he makes his leftist agenda clear, insisting that “after the Supreme Court opened the floodgates to big money in elections in its disgraceful Citizens United decision, big donors like to use these non-profit entities to launder campaign spending and hide their identities.” Whitehouse also asks witnesses from DOJ and IRS why they haven’t prosecuted 501(c)(4) groups who have made false statements about their activities, or donors who have used shell companies to mask their donations to Super PACs. He urges both entities to “put together a criminal case showing a fairly straightforward false statement or a fairly [straightforward] shell corporation disclosure violation.”(Source)

April 22, 2013: According to White House spokesman Jay Carney, this is the date when the White House Counsel first learns that the Inspector General will soon be completing its report about the IRS office in Cincinnati, which handles tax-exempt applications. (Source and Source)

May 1, 2013: After receiving an email from an assistant showing that 501(c)(4) applications have increased from 1,591 in 2010 to 3,398 in 2012, Lois Lerner writes back, “Looks to me like 2010-2012 doubled too. Oh well – thanks.” (Source)

May 2, 2013: Discussing an upcoming conference call with approximately 100 congressional staffers, Lerner cautions aides, “Need to be careful not to mention sequester/furlough unless asked although can allude to budget and resources restraints.” (Source)

May 2, 2013: In response to an email reminding her about the upcoming conference call with congressional staffers, Lerner responds, “Arrgh – I just saw it. Sharon [White] could skate, but Cindy [Thomas] is the person who could answer that stuff. We need to give them some type of language in the event that type of question comes up” [apparently in reference to earlier email referencing “sensitive issues”]. (Source)

May 8, 2013: Lois Lerner sends the following email to Nikole C. Flax, then-Chief of Staff to then-Acting IRS Commissioner Steven T. Miller: “I got a call today from Richard Pilger Director Elections Crimes Branch at DOJ … He wanted to know who at IRS the DOJ folk s [sic] could talk to about Sen. Whitehouse idea at the hearing that DOJ could piece together false statement cases about applicants who ‘lied’ on their 1024s – saying they weren’t planning on doing political activity, and then turning around and making large visible political expenditures. DOJ is feeling like it needs to respond, but want to talk to the right folks at IRS to see whether there are impediments from our side and what, if any damage this might do to IRS programs. I told him that sounded like we might need several folks from IRS…” (Source)

May 9, 2013: Flax responds to Lois Lerner: “I think we should do it – also need to include CI [Criminal Investigation Division], which we can help coordinate. Also, we need to reach out to FEC. Does it make sense to consider including them in this or keep it separate?(Source)

May 9, 2013: At an American Bar Association (ABA) conference, attorney Celia Roady asks a planted question of Exempt Organizations Division Director Lois Lerner regarding the IRS targeting scandal. The Inspector General’s report on the scandal was slated to be given to the White House the next day, and Lerner chose the ABA event as a venue for issuing a preemptive apology in advance of that report. Several days later, Cecilia Roady explains how this was arranged:

“On May 9, I received a call from Lois Lerner, who told me that she wanted to address an issue after her prepared remarks … and asked if I would pose a question to her after her remarks. I agreed to do so.… We had no discussion thereafter on the topic of the question, nor had we spoken about any of this before I received her call. She did not tell me, and I did not know, how she would answer the question.” (Source and Source)

May 10, 2013: Blaming low-level IRS employees in Cincinnati, Exempt Organizations Division Director Lois Lerner says that no high-level officials were aware of the IRS targeting of conservative groups until she began “seeing information in the press that raised questions for us.” She apologizes on behalf of the IRS for the “inappropriate” targeting. This same day, White House counsel receives the Inspector General’s report, and President Barack Obama is said to have heard of the matter for the first time. (SourceSource, and Source)

May 10, 2013: In an email to an aide responding to a request for information from a Washington Post reporter, Lerner admits that she “can’t confirm that there was anyone on the other side of the political spectrum” who was targeted by the IRS. She then adds that “The one with the names used were only know [sic] because they have been very loud in the press.” (Source)

May 10, 2013: An email from former Cincinnati program manager Cindy Thomas excoriates Lois Lerner for her comments blaming low-level IRS employees. Highlighting the words “low-level workers” in bold-face type each of the seven times she used it in a short email, Thomas asks, “How am I supposed to keep the low-level workers motivated when the public believes they are nothing more than low-level workers and now will have no respect for how they are working cases?” Lerner responds tersely nearly an hour later: “I will be back shortly and give you a call.” (Source)

May 13, 2013: President Obama claims to have learned about the IRS targeting just three days earlier: ”I first learned about it from the same news reports that I think most people learned about this. I think it was on Friday.” He says that if the IRS intentionally targeted conservatives, it was “outrageous.” The Democratic-controlled Senate Finance Committee joins Republican-led House committees in planning new investigations into the matter. (SourceSource, and Source)

May 13, 2013: The Daily Mail reports that the IRS, in many of its audits of conservative groups, “demanded to know the names of all its financial donors and volunteers, as part of a 55-question inquisition into its application for tax-exempt status.” For example, the questionnaire: (a) wanted to know “the names of the donors, contributors, and grantors” for every year “from inception to the present”; (b) demanded a listing of “the amounts of each of the donations, contributions, and grants and the dates you received them”; and (c) and asked the targeted groups to “provide the details” about how they had “use[d] these donations, contributions, and grants.”

May 14, 2013: White House press secretary Jay Carney says in a press conference that the White House was notified about the IRS targeting of Tea Party groups “several weeks ago.” Later in the press conference, however, Carney says that that he nor the President were notified individually. (Source)

May 14, 2013: IRS Director Steven Miller says that his agency demonstrated “a lack of sensitivity” in trying to determine whether conservative groups were eligible for tax exemption. The Justice Department says it will conduct a criminal investigation, the Inspector General’s report (titled “Inappropriate Criteria Were Used to Identify Tax-Exempt Applications for Review”) is released to the public, and President Obama calls the findings “intolerable and inexcusable.” (Source andSource)

May 14, 2013: A Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) report reveals that the IRS has singled out groups with conservative-sounding terms such as “patriot” and “Tea Party” in their titles when applying for tax-exempt status. The TIGTA probe determined that “Early in Calendar Year 2010, the IRS began using inappropriate criteria to identify organizations applying for tax-exempt status (e.g., lists of past and future donors).” The illegal IRS reviews continued for more than 18 months and “delayed processing of targeted groups applications” preparing for the 2012 presidential election. (Source)

May 15, 2013 – The IRS announces that IRS Director Steven Miller will be resigning in June, at which time he was already scheduled to leave anyway. (Source)

May 15, 2013: In an email to Lois Lerner, an aide specifically mentions “Tea Party Organizations,” the “Tea Party movement,” and “Tea Party Patriots” as organizations targeted by the IRS. (Source)

May 16, 2013: At a press conference, Julianna Goldman of Bloomberg Newsasks President Obama the following question (italics added for emphasis):

“Mr. President, I want to ask you about the IRS. Can you assure the American people that nobody in the White House knew about the agency’s actions before your Counsel’s Office found out on April 22nd? And when they did find out, do you think that you should have learned about it before you learned about it from news reports as you said last Friday? And also, are you opposed to there being a special counsel appointed to lead the Justice Department investigation?”

Obama replies, evasively:

“[L]et me make sure that I answer your specific question. I can assure you that I certainly did not know anything about the IG report before the IG report had been leaked through the press.”(Source)


May 16, 2013:
 President Obama calls the IRS’s targeting of conservative groups “outrageous and unacceptable.” He also reiterates that he was unaware of the targeting until news reports began coming out six days earlier. (Source)

May 17, 2013: The New York Times reports that the White House actually learned of the IRS targeting on June 4, 2012—five months prior to the 2012 elections. (Source and Source)

May 17, 2013: In a congressional hearing, acting IRS Commissioner Steven Miller apologizes for “foolish mistakes” carried out by IRS employees “trying to be more efficient in their workload selection.” But he strongly pushes back against Republican assertions that the agency is politicized. Moreover, he maintains that he did not lie to Congress—even though he never revealed the targeting program in response to repeated requests from Republican lawmakers in recent years. “I did not mislead Congress,” he says. “I answered the questions as they were asked.” Miller also says that he takes “exception” to the term “targeting” because “It’s a loaded term.” (Source)

May 20, 2013: The Colfax, California-based NorCal Tea Party—claiming that its application for tax-exempt status has been wrongfully subjected to extra scrutiny—launches a lawsuit against the IRS. (Source)

May 21, 2013: In a congressional hearing, former IRS Commissioner Douglas Shulman, who stepped down from that post when his five-year term expired in November 2012, tells the Senate Finance Committee he did not learn all the facts about the targeting of conservative groups until he read the preceding week’s Inspector General report confirming the targeting strategy. “I agree this is an issue that when someone spotted it, they should have brought it up the chain,” he says. “And they didn’t. I don’t know why.” Also during the hearing:

  • Shulman says he first heard about the targeting and about the Inspector General’s investigation in the spring of 2012, during the presidential election.
  • When Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Montana) asks Shulman how the improper screening system could have occurred in the first place, Shulman says, “Mr. Chairman, I can’t say. I can’t say that I know that answer.”
  • When Senator John Cornyn (R-Texas) asks Shulman whether he owes conservative groups an apology, the former IRS commissioner says: “I’m certainly not personally responsible for creating a list that had inappropriate criteria on it”—a reference to the list of words (e.g., “Tea Party” and “Patriot”) which IRS workers looked for when deciding which groups to scrutinize. “I very much regret that it happened and that it happened on my watch,” he adds. (Source)

May 21, 2013: True the Vote, a conservative organization that fights for electoral integrity and was targeted by the IRS, files suit against the IRS in federal court. (Source)

May 22, 2013: At a congressional hearing into the targeting scandal, Lois Lerner (Director of the IRS Exempt Organizations Division) gives a self-serving opening statement and then immediately pleads the Fifth Amendment, refusing to answer any questions. Says Lerner:

“… My professional career has been devoted to fulfilling responsibilities of the agencies for which I have worked, and I am very proud of the work that I have done in government…. I have not done anything wrong. I have not broken any laws, I have not violated any IRS rules or regulations, and I have not provided false information to this or any other congressional committee. And while I would very much like to answer the committee’s questions today, I’ve been advised by my counsel to assert my constitutional right not to testify or answer questions related to the subject matter of this hearing…. I know that some people will assume that I’ve done something wrong. I have not. One of the basic functions of the Fifth Amendment is to protect innocent individuals, and that is the protection I’m invoking today.” (Source)

May 23, 2013: Lois Lerner is placed on administrative leave from the IRS. (Source)

May 29, 2013:  CBS News reports that after Texas businesswoman Catherine Engelbrecht founded two conservative organizations, she was harassed to an extreme degree by the IRS as well as other government agencies. That prompted her to file a federal lawsuit in May 2013. According to CBS:

The trouble began shortly after Engelbrecht founded True the Vote, which trains election volunteers and aims to root out voter fraud, and King Street Patriots, a group with ideals similar to the Tea Party. Both sought tax-exempt status from the IRS in July 2010. And both organizations drew the ire of Democrats. Democrats accused True the Vote of intimidating voters in its poll watching efforts, which the group denies. And the Texas Democratic Party successfully sued King Street Patriots, arguing that it’s an unregistered political action committee.

But Engelbrecht’s attorney, Cleta Mitchell, says it’s not just the Democratic Party that went after the conservative causes, but also the federal government. Within months of the groups filing for tax-exempt status, Engelbrecht claims she started getting hit by an onslaught of harassment: six FBI domestic terrorism inquiries, an IRS visit, two IRS business audits, two IRS personal audits, and inspections of her equipment manufacturing company by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF), the U.S. Department of Labor Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and Texas environmental quality officials….

All the while, the IRS tax-exempt applications seemed to languish. Engelbrecht says the IRS requested additional information from True the Vote five times, requiring thousands of pages of documentation. Engelbrecht estimates she’s spent more than $100,000 in attorney and accountant fees to process the IRS requests. With its tax-exempt status in limbo, she says True the Vote had to return a $35,000 grant and cannot effectively fundraise. “I just kept thinking this can’t be happening.” Engelbrecht says, “it never ends.”

Engelbrecht’s attorney, Mitchell, says the IRS process for conservative groups was relatively painless, often taking just a few months, until about 2010 when there was an abrupt shift: simple questions became intrusive, lengthy interrogations requiring professional legal help. Applicants sometimes had to spend tens of thousands of dollars in attorney fees, they lost revenue, and in some cases, got so discouraged that they gave up on tax-exempt status altogether.

Washington, DC attorney John Pomeranz represents liberal organizations seeking tax-exemption. He told CBS News that he has found some of the IRS requests of tea party groups “new” and “very troubling,” and said he doesn’t recall getting similar demands for his liberal clients.  (Source)

May 31, 2013: It is reported that the IRS is being sued by 25 Tea Party groups in federal court over its illegal targeting practices. (Source)

June 2013: The Treasury Department’s Inspector General reveals that just 6 liberal/left groups were targeted by the IRS, compared to 292 conservative groups. The IG also says that 100% of conservative groups seeking special tax status— i.e., all 292 of them—were put under IRS review, while only 30% of the liberal/left groups were put under such review. (SourceSource, and Source)

June 5, 2013: It is reported that Sarah Hall Ingram, who headed the IRS’s Exempt Organizations Division in 2010 when the scandal-ridden agency began improperly targeting the tax-exempt nonprofit status of conservative groups, has logged 165 recorded visits to the White House since 2011. (Fully 155 of those were hosted by Jeanne Lambrew, deputy assistant to the president for health policy.) None of Ingram’s 165 meetings overlapped with those of former IRS Commissioner Douglas Shulman, whose name has appeared in the White House visitor logs 157 times since September 15, 2009. In short, these two IRS officials have been responsible for more than 300 White House visits since the beginning of the Obama administration. (Source and Source)

June 11, 2013: Pepperdine University Law School professor Paul L. Caronreveals the astonishing extent to which IRS attorneys supported Barack Obama over Mitt Romney in the 2012 presidential campaign:

Of the IRS lawyers who made contributions in the 2012 election, 95% contributed to Obama rather than to Romney. So among IRS lawyers, the ratio of Obama contributors to Romney contributors was not merely 4-to-1 at previously reported, but more like 20-to-1. The ratio of funds to Obama was even more lopsided, with about 32 times as much money going to Obama as to Romney from IRS lawyers….

The data show, however, that the partisanship of the lawyers in the IRS is not unusual or even particularly extreme among federal agencies. In fact, the lawyers in every single federal government agency–from the Department of Education [100%] to the Department of Defense [68%] — contributed overwhelmingly to Obama compared to Romney.

July 18, 2013: Testifying before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, top IRS attorney Carter Hull—a 48-year IRS veteran who will soon retire—says that in the winter of 2010-11:

“[I] was assigned by my supervisor to work on two applications of tea party groups. In that same month, I became aware that a group of tea party applications were being held by EO (Exempt Organizations) determinations in Cincinnati. It was my understanding that the applications assigned to me would be ‘test cases’ to provide guidance for those other applications. I was also told by my supervisor that I was to coordinate the review of the tea party applications that were assigned to Elizabeth Hofacre in Cincinnati.”

The most damning part of Hull’s testimony involves a directive from Lois Lerner’s senior advisor, who told him that the applications would require further review and “should go to the [IRS] chief counsel”—i.e., William Wilkins, an Obama appointee. (Source and Source)

July 24, 2013: During an economic address at Knox College in Galesburg, Illinois, President Obama charges that Republicans have turned the IRS matter into part of “an endless parade of distractions, political posturing and phony scandals.” (Source)

August 13, 2013: According to House Oversight Committee Chairman Darrell Issa and his colleague, Ohio Congressman Jim Jordan, Exempt Organizations Division Director Lois Lerner has been using a non-official, personal email account to conduct official government business. This is a violation of U.S. law, which requires those employed by federal agencies to retain all of their emails in the event that they are someday needed for lawsuits or congressional investigations. (Source)

August 2013: Congress issues its first request that it be provided with all emails sent or received by Lois Lerner from Jan. 1, 2009 to Aug. 2, 2013. (Source)

September 23, 2013: Lois Lerner, the woman at the center of the IRS Tea Party targeting scandal, retires from the agency after an internal investigation finds that she was guilty of “neglect of duties” and prepares to call for her dismissal. (Source)

October 9, 2013: It is learned that top IRS official Sarah Hall Ingram in 2012 discussed confidential taxpayer information with senior Obama White House officials — including Lois Lerner, then head of the IRS Tax Exempt Organizations division — as evidenced by a series of 2012 emails obtained by the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee. At that time, Ingram headed the IRS office responsible for overseeing tax-exempt nonprofit groups.

Specifically, Ingram sought to counsel the White House on how to handle a lawsuit filed by religious organizations opposing Obamacare’s mandate for contraception coverage. As the Daily Caller reports: “Email exchanges involving Ingram and White House officials — including White House health policy advisor Ellen Montz and deputy assistant to the president for health policy Jeanne Lambrew — contained confidential taxpayer information, according to Oversight.” This was a violation of Section 6103 of the Internal Revenue Code, which forbids — on pain of up to five years in prison — a federal employee from “disclos[ing] any return or return information obtained by him in any manner in connection with his service as such an officer or an employee.”

in her October 9 testimony before Rep. Darrell Issa’s House Oversight Committee, Ingram says she cannot recall a document that contained confidential taxpayer information. (Source)

November 2013: The House Oversight Committee subpoenas all emails sent or received by Lois Lerner from Jan. 1, 2009 to Aug. 2, 2013. (Source)

February 2, 2014: In an interview with Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly, President Obama adamantly rejects the suggestion that the IRS had been used for political purposes by targeting Tea Party groups that sought tax-exempt status. “That’s not what happened,” Obama says, explaining that certain IRS officials had simply made some “some bone-headed decisions” due to their confusion about the proper procedure for implementing the law governing tax-exempt organizations. When asked whether corruption, or mass corruption, had been a factor, Obama replies: “Not even mass corruption—not even a smidgen of corruption.” Obama also acknowledges that then-IRS Commissioner Doug Shulman had been to the White House more than 100 times, but says he cannot recall speaking to him on any of those occasions. (Source)

February 11, 2014: House Ways and Means Chairman Dave Camp (R-Michigan) says that his committee’s continuing investigation has found that the IRS targeting of conservative groups extended far beyond merely placing hurdles in the path of organizations that were seeking 501(c)(4) tax-exempt status. Says Camp:

“We now know that the IRS targeted not only right-leaning applicants, but also right-leaning groups that were already operating as 501(c)(4)s. At Washington, DC’s direction, dozens of groups operating as 501(c)(4)s were flagged for IRS surveillance, including monitoring of the groups’ activities, websites and any other publicly available information. Of these groups, 83% were right-leaning. And of the groups the IRS selected for audit, 100% were right-leaning.” (Source)

March 5, 2014: Former IRS official Lois Lerner once again invokes her Fifth Amendment right not to testify at a House Oversight Committee hearing, just as she previously did on May 22, 2013. Though Republicans argue that Lerner waived her Fifth Amendment right by giving a statement during that May 22 hearing, Lerner, in response to several questions, says: “On the advice of my counsel, I respectfully exercise my Fifth Amendment right and decline to answer that question.” (Source)

After the hearing is adjourned, Lerner’s attorney, Bill Taylor, says that his client will make no further statements or give any testimony unless forced to. According to Taylor, the Oversight Committee “would have to start all over” in its investigation to compel Lerner back to the witness stand. (Source)

March 11, 2014: Darrell Issa’s Committee on Oversight and Government Reform issues a staff report on Lois Lerner and her involvement in the IRS targeting of conservative groups. According to Brietbart.com:

The [Oversight Committee] report suggests Lerner misled Congress in four instances and attempted to downplay the inappropriate targeting after it came to light.

The report says Lerner was concerned about the political implications of allowing 501(c)(4) groups to spend money on election related activity in the wake of the Citizens United decision. The Oversight Committee report concludes that Lerner was involved in three separate efforts to curb such spending. From the report’s conclusion:
Evidence indicates Lerner and her Exempt Organizations unit took a three pronged approach to “do something about it” to “fix the problem” of nonprofit political speech:

1) Scrutiny of new applicants for tax-exempt status (which began as Tea Party targeting);
2) Plans to scrutinize organizations, like those supported by the “Koch Brothers,” that were already acting as 501(c)(4) organizations; and
3)“[O]ff plan” efforts to write new rules cracking down on political activity to replace those that had been in place since 1959.

The sense conveyed in the report is that Lerner was concerned IRS activity might appear to be “per se political” (as she warned in one email) even as she helped slow walk any movement toward approval on cases which were, overwhelmingly, conservative groups.

In the summer of 2011, Lerner learned about the criteria used to gather the Tea Party cases, which included “[s]tatements in the case file [that] criticize how the country is being run.” As a result she adjusted the criteria for selection so it would not appear to be focused on right-leaning groups. However, while her adjusting of the criteria represents an admission that the prior criteria had been problematic, she apparently made no effort to release the cases selected under that criteria. Tea Party cases remained gummed up in the multi-tier review process she had recommended.

The same briefing prepared for Lerner noted that one of the groups under scrutiny “stated it will conduct advocacy and political campaign intervention, but political campaign intervention will account for 20% or less of activities.” That’s far below the 49% threshold set by law. The briefing for Lerner added, “A proposed favorable letter has been sent to Counsel for review.” But the report notes that as of June 2013, a full two years later, the application was still pending.

And there is no doubt Lerner was aware who was being scrutinized. In July 2012, Lerner was notified by email that of the 199 501(c)(4) cases which had been set aside “approximately 3/4 appear to be conservative leaning while fewer than 10 appear to be liberal/progressive leaning groups…”

Earlier in 2012, Lerner was asked a series of questions by Committee staff. The report lays out four instances where she appears to have misled them in her answers. For instance, Lerner was asked whether criteria for examining 501(c)(4) cases had been changed at any time. She said no. But, as noted above, she had changed the criteria used to identify cases for scrutiny herself in 2011.

In response to another Committee question about letters sent to conservative groups demanding donor lists, Lerner replied this had been done “in the ordinary course of the application process.”

Later, in 2013, the Committee learned from the IRS Commissioner’s Chief of Staff, Nikole Flax, that she was unable to find another instance in the IRS’ history where such a request had been made.

Finally, the report is critical of Lerner’s attempt to downplay the import of the TIGTA findings by arranging a planted question to which Lerner could give a scripted answer claiming the targeting had been a mistake, not “a political vendetta.” Internally, Lerner wrote an email saying of the forthcoming report, “It is what it is … we will get dinged.” But a few months later, just before the report was released, she was exploring her retirement options. (Source)

April 7, 2014: A new report by by aides to Rep. Darrell Issa, chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, reveals that IRS agents have testified before Congress that — contrary to recent claims by Democrats — the agency’s political targeting did not apply to liberal/left organizations. A Daily Callerstory explains:

IRS agents testified before Oversight that ACORN groups were scrutinized because the agency thought they were old organizations applying as new ones. Emerge America was scrutinized for potential “improper private benefit.” No evidence exists that the IRS requested additional information from any Occupy Wall Street group.

“Only seven applications in the IRS backlog contained the word ‘progressive,’ all of which were then approved by the IRS, while Tea Party groups received unprecedented review and experienced years-long delays. While some liberal-oriented groups were singled out for scrutiny, evidence shows it was due to non-political reasons,” according to the Oversight staff report….

“[T]he Administration and congressional Democrats have seized upon the notion that the IRS’s targeting was not just limited to conservative applicants,” the report states. “These Democratic claims are flat-out wrong and have no basis in any thorough examination of the facts. Yet, the Administration’s chief defenders continue to make these assertions in a concerted effort to deflect and distract from the truth about the IRS’s targeting of tax-exempt applicants.”

“[T]here is simply no evidence that any liberal or progressive group received enhanced scrutiny because its application reflected the organization’s political views,” the report stated.

April 9, 2014: The Washington Times reports that a government watchdog is pursuing cases against three IRS employees and offices suspected of engaging in illegal political activity in support of President Obama and fellow Democrats:

In one case the Office of Special Counsel, which investigates federal employees who conduct politics on government time, said it was “commonplace” in a Dallas IRS office for employees to have pro-Obama screensavers on their computers, and to have campaign-style buttons and stickers at their office.

In another case, a worker at the tax agency’s customer help line urged taxpayers “to re-elect President Obama in 2012 by repeatedly reciting a chant based on the spelling of his last name,” the Office of Special Counsel said in a statement. OSC said it is seeking “significant disciplinary action” against that employee.

Another IRS employee in Kentucky has agreed to serve a 14-day suspension for blasting Republicans in a conversation with a taxpayer.
“They’re going to take women back 40 years,” the IRS employee said in a conversation that was recorded. The employee also said that “if you vote for a Republican, the rich are going to get richer and the poor are going to get poorer.”
That employee went on to tell the taxpayer she knew she wasn’t supposed to be voicing her political opinions, and asked the taxpayer not to say anything.

In the Dallas situation, the OSC issued a letter to employees reminding them they aren’t allowed to do anything that would appear to be campaigning. “Specifically, it was alleged that employees have worn partisan political stickers, buttons, and clothing to work and have displayed partisan political screensavers on their IRS computers. It was alleged that these items expressed support for President Barack Obama,” the OSC said.

The IRS issued a statement saying it couldn’t comment on specifics, but vowing it took complaints of politicking seriously.

May 6, 2014: The House of Representatives, in a 231-187 vote, decides to hold Lois Lerner in contempt of Congress for refusing to testify about the scandal in which the IRS targeted conservative groups, despite a subpoena that demanded her testimony. Six Democrats side with Republicans in the vote.

May 14, 2014: The Daily Caller reports the following:

The IRS’ Washington, D.C. headquarters targeted conservative groups in part due to pressure from Democratic Sen. Carl Levin, according to emails obtained by the watchdog group Judicial Watch and reviewed by The Daily Caller [DC].

Levin, chairman of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs’ permanent subcommittee on investigations, wrote a March 30, 2012 letter to then-IRS commissioner Douglas Shulman discussing the “urgency” of the issue of possible political activity by nonprofit applicants. Levin asked if the IRS was sending out additional information requests to applicant groups and cit[ed] an IRS rejection letter to a conservative group as an example of how the IRS should be conducting its business.

A top IRS official replied that the agency could send out “individualized questions and requests.”

“Some entities claiming tax-exempt status as social welfare organizations under 26 U.S.C.&501(c)(4) appear to be engaged in political activities more appropriate for political organizations claiming tax-exempt status under 26 U.S.C.&527,” Sen. Levin wrote. “Because of the urgency of the issues involved in this matter, please provide the following information by April 20, 2012.”

Levin asked ”if it is not provided on a routine basis, approximately what percentage of such applicants receive an IRS questionnaire seeking information about any political activities, and how the IRS determines whether and when to send that questionnaire; and approximately how many days after an application is filed that questionnaire is typically sent.”

Levin cited a 1997 IRS rejection letter to the conservative group National Policy Forum, formed by former Republican National Committee chairman Haley Barbour, and asked Shulman, “Is it still the position of the IRS that a 501(c)(4) organization cannot engage in any partisan political activity, even as a secondary activity?”

Then-IRS deputy commissioner Steven T. Miller sent Levin a 16-page response explaining that the flexibility of IRS rules allow for the agency to “prepare individualized questions and requests.”

“There is no standard questionnaire used to obtain information about political activities,” Miller wrote. “Although there is a template development letter that describes the general information on the case development process, the letter does not specify the information to be requested from any particular organization … Consequently, revenue agents prepare individualized questions and requests for documents relevant to the application. . .”

As TheDC has extensively reported, IRS agents targeted groups’ donors, seized training information, demanded personal information on college interns, and even targeted individuals by name.

The emails obtained by Judicial Watch clearly demonstrate that the targeting was based in Washington, D.C.

IRS official Holly Paz wrote a July 6, 2010 email to Washington-based IRS lawyer Steven Grodnitzky “to let Cindy and Sharon know how we have been handling Tea Party applications in the last few months.” Grodnitzky replied to the email, confirming that the Washington-based Exempt Organization Technical unit (EOT) was designing the targeting in the nation’s capital.

“EOT is working the Tea party applications in coordination with Cincy. We are developing a few applications here in DC and providing copies of our development letters with the agent to use as examples in the development of their cases,” Grodnitzky wrote.

“Chip Hull [another lawyer in IRS headquarters] is working these cases in EOT and working with the agent in Cincy, so any communication should include him as well. Because the Tea party applications are the subject of an SCR [Sensitive Case Report], we cannot resolve any of the cases without coordinating with Rob,” Grodnitzky wrote.

“Rob” is believed to be then-IRS director of rulings and agreements Rob Choi, who was based at the agency’s Washington headquarters, according to Judicial Watch.

Lois Lerner also sent an April 2013 email to IRS internal investigators shortly before the scandal broke, explaining that “staff used their own interpretations of the brief reference to ‘organizations involved with the Tea Party movement,’ which was what was on the BOLO list.” (Source)

June 13, 2014: The IRS tells Congress that due to a computer crash, it has lost many of former employee Lois Lerner’s emails from 2009-11 — specifically, those she transmitted to other federal agencies including the White House, the Justice Department, the Federal Election Commission, the Treasury Department, and Democratic Members of Congress.

Rep. Dave Camp, chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, says: “The fact that I am just learning about this, over a year into the investigation, is completely unacceptable and now calls into question the credibility of the IRS’s response to congressional inquiries…. Frankly, these are the critical years [2009-11] of the targeting of conservative groups that could explain who knew what when, and what, if any, coordination there was between agencies. Instead, because of this loss of documents, we are conveniently left to believe that Lois Lerner acted alone.”

In a letter to IRS commissioner John Koskinen, House oversight committee chairman Darrell Issa, who issued a subpoena seeking IRS documents, says that more than 1 million pertinent documents have yet to be produced.
“At this rate, the IRS’ response to the committee’s subpoena will drag on for years,” he wrote. (Source)

June 17, 2014: The IRS reports that due to computer crashes, it cannot produce e-mails from six more employees — in addition to Lois Lerner — who were involved in the targeting of conservative groups. Among the lost emails were those sent by Nikole Flax, chief of staff to former IRS commissioner Steven Miller. (Source)

June 18, 2014: When Information Technology experts say they are confident that they would be able to retrieve the lost emails from Lois Lerner’s crashed computer hard drive, the IRS announces that the hard drive has been thrown away. (Source)

June 20, 2014: IRS Commissioner John Koskinen tells Congress that Lerner’s hard drive had been “recycled and destroyed in the normal process.” (Source)

June 20, 2014: In an angry exchange with IRS Commissioner John Koskinen during a Congressional hearing, Rep. Paul Ryan says:

“I’m sitting here, listening to this testimony, I don’t believe it. That’s your problem. Nobody believes you. The Internal Revenue Service comes to us a couple years ago and misleads us and tells us no targeting is occurring. Then it said it was a few rogue agents in Cincinnati. Then it said it was also on progressives. All of those things have been proven untrue….

“You are the Internal Revenue Service. You can reach into the lives of hard-working taxpayers and with a phone call, an e-mail or a letter you can turn their lives upside down. You ask taxpayers to hand onto seven years of their personal tax information in case they are ever audited and you can’t keep six months worth of employee e-mails? And now that we are seeing this investigation, you don’t have the e-mails, hard drives crashed. You learned about this months ago. You just told us, and we had to ask you on Monday.”

Koskinen replies that this was the first time in his career that someone did not believe him.

“I don’t believe you,” Ryan said again.

When the chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, Rep. Dave Camp (R-Michigan), notes that the IRS has not issued any apology for not having informed anyone that the emails were lost long ago. “I don’t think an apology is owed,” Koskinen says. “Not a single email has been lost since the start of this investigation. Every email has been preserved that we have.”

Koskinen also says that the appointment of a special federal prosecutor to investigate how the IRS handled tax-exempt applications would be a “monumental waste of taxpayer funds.” (Source)

 

http://www.discoverthenetworks.org/viewSubCategory.asp?id=1935

BUSTED: The Complete IRS Scandal Timeline in Spreadsheet Format
[Updated]


Reading this timeline, I have come to three conclusions:

  1. IRS official Steve Miller lied to Congress
2. IRS official Lois Lerner lied to Congress
3. President Barack Obama lied to the American people.
This scandal has the fingerprints of Barack Obama, David Axelrod, and Valerie Jarrett all over it.

This is fascism on the part of the IRS and the White House. It is fascism, straight up.

http://directorblue.blogspot.com/2013/05/busted-complete-irs-scandal-timeline-in.html

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The Pronk Pops Show 284, June 23, 2014, Story 1: IRS Scandal Update — IRS Archive Vault Hard Drives Exist and Have All The Emails Requested By Congress — Videos

Posted on June 23, 2014. Filed under: American History, Blogroll, Business, College, Communications, Computers, Constitutional Law, Crime, Economics, Education, Employment, Federal Government, Fiscal Policy, Government, Government Dependency, Government Spending, Hardware, History, IRS, Law, Obama, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Regulation, Resources, Scandals, Security, Social Science, Tax Policy, Taxes, Terror, Videos, Wealth, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

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The Pronk Pops Show Podcasts

Pronk Pops Show 284: June 23, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 283: June 20, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 282: June 19, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 281: June 17, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 280: June 16, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 279: June 13, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 278: June 12, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 277: June 11, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 276: June 10, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 275: June 9, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 274: June 6, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 273: June 5, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 272: June 4, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 271: June 2, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 270: May 30, 2014 

Pronk Pops Show 269: May 29, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 268: May 28, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 267: May 27, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 266: May 23, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 265: May 22, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 264: May 21, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 263: May 20, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 262: May 16, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 261: May 15, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 260: May 14, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 259: May 13, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 258: May 9, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 257: May 8, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 256: May 5, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 255: May 2, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 254: May 1, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 253: April 30, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 252: April 29, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 251: April 28, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 250: April 25, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 249: April 24, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 248: April 22, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 247: April 21, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 246: April 17, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 245: April 16, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 244: April 15, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 243: April 14, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 242: April 11, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 241: April 10, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 240: April 9, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 239: April 8, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 238: April 7, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 237: April 4, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 236: April 3, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 235: March 31, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 234: March 28, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 233: March 27, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 232: March 26, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 231: March 25, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 230: March 24, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 229: March 21, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 228: March 20, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 227: March 19, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 226: March 18, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 225: March 17, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 224: March 7, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 223: March 6, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 222: March 3, 2014

Story 1: IRS Scandal Update — IRS Archive Vault Hard Drives Exist and Have All The Emails Requested By Congress — Videos

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gay_coupleobama-lois-lerner-fifth-amendment1-540x368Lois Lerner takes the 5th

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IRS SCANDAL

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EV 10 Process Diagram -Exchange Server Archiving (July 2012)

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IRS Scandal – IRS Chief Koskinen To Testify Before House Oversight CMTE – Happening Now

IRS commissioner to testify in missing email scandal

Jay Sekulow Spoke with Fox News: IRS Scandal & Missing Emails

Mica on IRS Obstruction-Lois Lerner’s Missing E-mails

FOX News — IRS Scandal

IRS Scandal – Lost IRS Email – Special Report All Star

IRS Scandal – Shapiro: The Obama Administration Works Like Like A Mafia Organization – Kelly File

IRS Scandal – Tale Of The Missing Emails – IRS Chief Faces Grilling On Capitol Hill – Journal

IT Experts: IRS Lies About Lost Emails

Mark Levin Calls Out GOP Over Incompetent IRS Investigation

Mark Levin Decimates IRS For Targeting Him, Reveals His Complaint Led To Investigation

Epic Mark Levin Show: The IRS Should be Politically Killed

IRS Scandal – Hard (Drive) To Believe – IRS Boss Stands By Vanished Emails Story – Fox & Friends

GOP Lawmakers Grill IRS Commissioner Over Missing Emails In Targeting Scandal – Huckabee – Cavuto

IRS Scandal IRS: Lerner’s Hard Drive Recycled After Glitch That Wiped Out Emails

IRS Scandal – Critics Accuse IRS Of A “Cover-Up” Amid Report Lerner Emails Are Lost – Forbes On Fox

IRS Scandal – House Lawmakers Demand Answers On Thousands Of Missing Emails From IRS Chief -The Five

‘Nobody Believes You’: Ryan Blasts IRS Head Over Lost Emails

‘Let Me Finish!’ GOP Rep. Dave Camp and IRS Commissioner’s Testy Exchange

IRS Commissioner Won’t Apologize For Lost Lerner E-mails

IRS Commissioner John Koskinen grilled by Rep. Kevin Brady

GASPS As IRS Commissioner Admits Missing Lois Lerner Hard Drive Was Melted Down

Paul Ryan blasts IRS commissioner: ‘I don’t believe you’

IRS Scandal – IRS Official Whose Emails ‘Vanished’ Was Frequent White House Visitor – Kelly File

Judge Jeanine Pirro How High Will IRS Scandal Go? New Testimony Links Targeting To DC!

Judge Jeanine Pirro – Trey Gowdy – IRS Targeting Investigation Lois Lerner Emails Expose I

Is The IRS Scandal The Most Dangerous In U.S. History? – Herman Cain – Stuart Varney

FBI Officials There Is No Evidence To Warrant Charges In IRS Scandal Stuart Varney

IRS Scandal Debated by Fox News Sunday Panel with Chris Wallace

$1 Million Reward on IRS Scandal Whistleblower Offered

Ted Cruz Warns That Dems Are Moving To ‘Repeal’ The First Amendment

Sen. Roberts to Harry Reid: First Amendment Can’t be Amended to Stifle Critics

Supreme Court Changes the Campaign Finance Game

What Citizens United Didn’t Say

Obama’s SOTU Citizens United LIE explained

Explaining the Supreme Court on Campaign Finance

Citizens United (Hillary: the Movie) v. Federal Election Commission

Campaign Finance Reform and the Citizens United Supreme Court Decision

What You Probably Haven’t Heard About Citizens United

3 Reasons Not To Sweat The “Citizens United” SCOTUS Ruling

SCOTUS Decision Aided Santorum, Campaign Finance Expert Says

Campaign Finance: Lawyers’ Citizens United v. FEC U.S. Supreme Court Arguments (2009)

IRS Scandal – Sen. Carl Levin Pressured the IRS to Break the Law

Mark Levin: Democrat Senator Should Be Brought Before a Grand Jury for Role in IRS Scandal

IRS Under Fire The Origins Of A Political Scandal – Is The Obama Admin Corrupt? – Wake Up America

Investigate Senate Democrat Carl Levin

Breitbart.Com Contributor Joel Griffith on the IRS Scandal and Smoking Gun Emails

IRS Scandal – The IRS Has Delayed Releasing Documents Six Times Already – The Kelly File

March 26, 2014

Rep. Gowdy Questions IRS Commissioner John Koskinen about IRS Targeting Scandal

[WATCH] IRS Commisioner says it will “take years” to prOduce Lois Lerner emails and documents

IRS Scandal – IT: Jimmy Hoffa Is Hard To Find, Not Lois Lerner’s Emails – The Real Story

Ellison Barber: Lois Lerner’s Lost Emails ‘Doesn’t Make Sense’

Goldberg: Missing Lois Lerner Emails Are ‘Justifiable Red Meat’ for Republican Investigators

Why Archive Email?

What is email archiving and why is it important?

Office 365 and Exchange Online Archiving and Compliance

Symantec Enterprise Vault.cloud Archiving Demo

Data Workflows in E-Mail Archiving using Symantec Enterprise Vault and Dell Storage

Introduction to Symantec Managed Enterprise Vault

Symantec Tales from the Vault: Introducing Enterprise Vault 11

Symantec Tales from the Vault: Using Mail Connect to Streamline Archive Access

Understanding email servers and clients

How your email server works

Beck-Napolitano – The Right To Be Left Alone

5 Questions: IRS chief meets Congress over computer crash

The disappearance of IRS employee emails has kicked the rumor mill over agency targeting of tea party groups into high gear.

Republicans accuse the IRS of disposing of evidence that could link the practice to the Obama Administration and ex-IRS official Lois Lerner. Some Democrats, meanwhile, want to ignore the matter, arguing that tech accidents happen and that the emails aren’t relevant anyway.

IRS Commissioner John Koskinen will face his toughest round of questioning yet from irate lawmakers on the House Ways and Means Committee on Friday.

 

President Barack Obama brought in Koskinen to clean up the mess, after firing the acting IRS chief at the time, Steve Miller. Lerner’s admission that the agency had inappropriately used key words like “tea party” to scrutinize applicants for nonprofit status in May 2013, following by a critical inspector general report days later, set off furor.

Here are some to expect:

1. Why just now tell Congress?

Lawmakers want to know why the IRS just told Congress late last week that Lerner’s 2011 hard drive crash resulted in her archived emails being lost.

After all, it’s been more than a year since the IRS controversy came to light and lawmakers started demanding copies of IRS employee emails, with Lerner, who headed tax-exempt unit, being one of Republicans’ key targets from the start.

 

It is unclear when exactly Koskinen learned of the matter. Koskinen said Monday he first heard of it “late in the spring.” Ways and Means Chairman Dave Camp (R-Mich.) has said that some IRS employees knew as early as February.

Republicans are furious that Koskinen didn’t mention the crash during spring hearings, when they peppered him with questions about why the agency had not turned over all of Lerner’s emails. Koskinen at a late March hearing, for example, retorted that the process is tricky and could take years because of taxpayer privacy laws. He said the agency would comply to turn over all Lerner’s emails but never mentioned that a chunk of them was lost.

Some Republicans are already accusing the IRS of deceit.

“Why did they deceitfully mislead this Congress in promising to provide all of Lerner’s email when they … had already been told about this supposed computer loss?” asked Ways and Means Rep. Kevin Brady (R-Texas) .

 

But the IRS says it did not realize what happened to Lerner’s emails until it expanded its probe of her files from “relevant” correspondence to all correspondence, as demanded by Republicans.

Koskinen also told reporters on the Hill on Monday he chose now because the Senate Finance Committee was getting close to finalizing its IRS investigation: “We did not expect that. We were expecting that we would complete the Lois Lerner email production by the end of this month, complete with a full discussion of what we’ve been able to find and what we have not.”

2. When was her hard drive recycled, and did they try to get it back?

Some lawmakers and observers had hoped the crashed hard drives could be recovered by top tech experts. But POLITICO reported Wednesday night that the hard drive has been recycled — making retrieval likely impossible, sources say.

The questioning will now likely focus on what steps the IRS took, both when the computers crashed back in 2011, and what the IRS did this year after it discovered the emails were gone.

“There are many pressing questions that must be answered regarding how this development came about and what led to the destruction of the hard drive in the first place,” Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah.) said in a statement.

The IRS has said the best people in the criminal division — tech experts who can rebuild and search hidden criminal records on computers — weren’t able to recover Lerner’s documents. The IRS also released emails showing Lerner asking for computer help to recover the documents.

Some Republicans, like Oversight Rep. Trey Gowdy (S.C.), want to know if the metadata exist to get the senders, receivers and dates of emails, if not the content.

GOP panel staff members wonder if the IRS went back to the sixth-month files it kept at the time on all employee email to restore Lerner’s Outlook after it crashed. The IRS backed up emails for six months on a disk. That means, theoretically, the IRS should have had a tape at the time of the crash of emails Lerner had received during the first half of 2011, they say.

Oversight Republican Rep. Jason Chaffetz (Utah) thinks there might be another way to recover the info: “Bring the nerds in! … I want a group of nerds who can tell you how this works, because in this day and age, emails don’t just disappear off the face of the planet. … You can’t just erase the Internet.”

3. Did the IRS break any laws?

Republicans say the IRS may have broke record keeping laws by not backing up employees’ emails.

The Federal Records Act requires that official documents be backed up in a method chosen by each agency and that National Archives be notified if documents are destroyed. But transparency advocates say the law isn’t clear on what exactly constitutes official documents.

Before May of 2013, when the scandal broke, the IRS only backed up emails on tapes for six months and then recycled the tapes, essentially throwing out the data. It relied on employees to print out copies of official correspondence and file them.

The Archives, which oversees the law, is now looking into the IRS’s loss of emails and “was concerned to learn that the IRS has lost email due to a hard-drive failure,” according to a spokesperson.

The IRS maintains it hasn’t broken any rules and that it would cost millions — money the cash-strapped agency says it doesn’t have — to back up all employee emails forever. They also say the recycling of failed hard drives is standard procedure.

4. Could someone have taken advantage of the system?

The GOP suspects more than just bad record keeping at the IRS — but also a cover-up. The IRS emphatically denies such accusations.

Republicans want to know if Lerner, former chief of staff to the commissioner Nikole Flax or others with lost emails could have destroyed them knowing they couldn’t be backed up.

They’ll point out that Lerner’s computer crashed just a few days after after Camp sent a letter to then-IRS Commissioner Douglas Shulman inquiring about why the IRS was auditing political nonprofits.

Democrats will point out the White House this week said it did a search and found no emails between Lerner and White House staff from 2009 through 2011.

Koskinen will likely respond by citing emails showing that Lerner was worried about getting her hard drive back, saying she will “keep my fingers crossed” for recovery.

“There were some documents in the files that are irreplaceable. Whatever you can do to help, is greatly appreciated,” she wrote to someone looking at her computer in July 2010.

Koskinen said there’s “no indication” that anyone at the IRS was trying to hide emails.

5. What about the other lost emails?

Lerner’s email has been the focus, but Ways and Means Republicans say that as many as six additional people involved in the scandal also had email erased in hard drive crashes.

While some may take that as a confirmation that crashes happen at the IRS on a regular basis, some Republicans see it as a smokescreen.

“OK, a computer crashes, you ought to be able to get back finding that information. But to have six others? Something’s rotten in this,” said Rep. Charles Boustany (R-La).

Hatch — working with Senate Finance Chairman Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) on what has been described as a bipartisan IRS probe — is not pleased that they learned of the lost emails only as they were putting the finishing touches on their final report, and that Koskinen earlier this week only mentioned Lerner’s lost email when he met them in person— not the other six.

Expect to hear more details about these other crashes at the hearings. How they crashed, when, and how were the people linked to the scandal?

Lawmakers may also ask the IRS how often computer crashes happen at the IRS. At least two IRS officials, one former and one current, have told POLITICO they lost information in a hard drive crash, too.

The IRS has seen its budget reduced, including for IT, for the past few years, even as Congress has heaped more responsibility on the agency. The IRS is expected to cite its very old technology, and lack of funds to update it, as part of the reason for the crashes.

Wyden told POLITICO he’s “definitely convinced that that issue needs a full hearing, and we’re going to do it.”

Read more: http://www.politico.com/story/2014/06/irs-chief-congress-computer-crash-108089_Page2.html#ixzz35DLVkKsQ

Read more: http://www.politico.com/story/2014/06/irs-chief-congress-computer-crash-108089.html#ixzz35DKYbc8a

Read more: http://www.politico.com/story/2014/06/irs-chief-congress-computer-crash-108089.html#ixzz35DKIDctt

Darrell Issa calls White House attorney on IRS email loss

House Oversight Chairman Darrell Issa is hauling in a former IRS counsel-turned-White House attorney to testify on the disappeared Lois Lerner emails.

The California Republican on Thursday evening requested Jennifer O’Connor of the White House Counsel’s office to testify on Tuesday morning about her knowledge of the crashed hard drive of ex-IRS tax exempt chief Lerner. The IRS says the crash erased two years’ worth of Lerner’s emails just when the IRS was beginning to pull conservative social welfare groups for additional scrutiny.

O’Connor was hired on at the IRS from May 2013 to November 2013 to serve as counselor to Acting IRS Commissioner Danny Werfel. One of her primary duties was to help the IRS respond to congressional inquiries after the tea party-targeting controversy came to light. And IRS chief counsel William Wilkins told the panel during its IRS probe that O’Connor was one of two people supervising the collection of “documents relating to the committee’s requests for material.”

Oversight Republicans had requested Lerner’s emails.

Issa suspects O’Connor, a former partner at D.C.’s WilmerHale, may have known about the missing Lerner emails.

“Given your prominent role in supervising the IRS’s document review and production processes, you likely knew or should have known that the IRS was missing a portion of e-mails sent or received by Ms. Lerner responsive to the Committee’s subpoena,” Issa said in a statement.

O’Connor specializes in responding to congressional investigations and was also detailed to help out the Health and Human Services Department following the botch Obamacare roll out in the early winter of last year. She headed to the White House earlier this year, according to the panel.

IRS Commissioner John Koskinen, who will appear before House Ways and Means Friday morning in the first hearing on the email controversy, will also sit in Issa’s hot seat just a few hours before O’Connor on Monday night.

The hearings come just days after the IRS told lawmakers that all Lerner’s emails between January 2009 and April 2011 were lost in a computer crash in mid-2011. The defunct hard drive was also thrown out as per IRS procedure, sources say. Ways and Means said six additional people involved in the sandal have also had emails lost since the IRS at the time did not back up email.

http://www.politico.com/story/2014/06/darrell-issa-white-house-attorney-irs-email-loss-108099.html

 

 

IRS Has Lost More E-mails . . .

By Eliana Johnson

It’s not just Lois Lerner’s e-mails. The Internal Revenue Service says it can’t produce e-mails from six more employees involved in the targeting of conservative groups, according to two Republicans investigating the scandal.

The IRS recently informed Ways and Means chairman Dave Camp and subcommittee chairman Charles Boustany that computer crashes resulted in additional lost e-mails, including from Nikole Flax, the chief of staff to former IRS commissioner Steven Miller, who was fired in the wake of the targeting scandal.

The revelation about Lerner’s e-mails rekindled the targeting scandal and today’s news has further inflamed Republicans. Camp and Boustany are now demanding a special prosecutor to investigate “every angle” of the events that led to Lois Lerner’s revelation in May 2013 that the agency had used inappropriate criteria to review the applications for tax exemption.

The lawmakers expressed particular outrage that the agency has known since February that it would not be able to produce the e-mails requested by the committee yet did not apprise the committee of that fact, and they charged in a statement that the IRS is attempting to “cover up the fact that it convenient lost key documents in the investigation.”

If Lerner is the central figure in the scandal — Oversight Committee chairman Darrell Issa said Monday evening he believes she was the senior-most official involved — Flax may be an important auxiliary figure. E-mails produced in response to a Freedom of Information Act request from the group Judicial Watchshow Flax giving the green light to Lerner’s request to meet with Department of Justice officials to explore the possibility of criminally prosecuting nonprofit groups — at the suggestion of Democratic senator Sheldon Whitehouse — for engaging in political activity after declaring on their application for nonprofit status that they had no plans to do so.

E-mails uncovered by the committee last week showed that, in preparation for her meeting with the Department of Justice, Lerner and one of her advisers transmitted 1.1 million pages of data on nonprofit groups, including confidential taxpayer information, to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, potentially in violation of federal law

http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/380576/irs-has-lost-more-e-mails-eliana-johnson

An Introduction to Email Archiving

With email being such a vital part of a business’s day-to-day activity and communication, it’s no surprise that many organizations are looking to back-up sent and received messages. Messages often contain important information, such as negotiation details, agreements and customer commitments, while they are also the basis for binding contracts.

Therefore, it’s no surprise that businesses are crying out for effective email archiving solutions to keep a vital record of these kinds of communications, especially with overall data growth expected to grow from 26 per cent to 50 per cent in the next year. In addition to providing storage solutions for vast quantities of emails, what benefits does email archiving provide your business?

Efficient access

Storing hundreds of thousands of emails is one thing, but finding the right one when it’s needed can also be problematic. Furthermore, what happens when you need to find that vital document but you aren’t able to connect to the office-based server due to an outage, or you wish to retrieve a document that has been archived for an important meeting? This is where a cloud-based service, like the one offered by Mimecast Email Archiving, could prove particularly beneficial.

All emails, both internal and external, are easily stored in a secure archive, offering a huge amount of storage space and the ability to access the mailbox anywhere, as long as there is an internet connection and you have a device that can connect to the web. This allows for greater worker productivity, as staff will no longer have to forage around for important documents or call technical support for email access. They can simply log-in and look through their emails in real-time.

Folders can be used to organise emails into an accessible files, while the search function makes it easy to scan for a key phrase or word that is located in the desired document.

Minimising costs, maximising security

The major problems with large storage systems are the costs involved in maintaining them, the need to guard against security issues, and the stretching of company resources and man-power. An email archive in the cloud helps to meet these challenges and solve them in one accessible, simple and unified platform.

Security is perhaps the most pressing issue, due to the risks associated with email viruses and spam. However, a system like Mimecast is extremely resilient, and a number of copies are created of inbound, outbound and internal messages, which are then immediately encrypted and geographically dispersed to ensure no important information is lost forever.

With technology evolving all the time, having to complete data migration and software upgrades can be complicated. However, using an email archiving system in the cloud eliminates these issues without any interruption to existing services. There is almost no limit on the amount of data that can be stored, meaning that regardless of how your business needs grow, there will always be enough capacity to meet them.

Complete integration

Email archiving, as offered by Mimecast, allows you to integrate the solution to Microsoft Outlook, enabling the user to access their personal archive with a familiar email interface. This makes it easy to recover deleted messages that are then restored to Outlook using the ‘drag and drop’ system, providing simple management of your mailbox. The service is already available on Android, Windows Phone, iPhone and Blackberry, ensuring that all major smartphones can take advantage of a cloud-based email platform.

And that concludes our introduction to email archiving. Make sure your business has a solution imminently to help increase your company’s productivity.

http://pctechmag.com/2014/05/an-introduction-to-email-archiving/

 

Email archiving

Email Archiving is the act of preserving and making searchable all email to/from an individual. Email archiving solutions capture email content either directly from the email application itself or during transport. The messages are typically then stored on magnetic disk storage and indexed to simplify future searches. In addition to simply accumulating email messages, these applications index and provide quick, searchable access to archived messages independent of the users of the system using a couple of different technical methods of implementation. The reasons a company may opt to implement an email archiving solution include protection of mission critical data, to meet retention and supervision requirements of applicable regulations, and for e-discovery purposes. It is predicted that the email archiving market will grow from nearly $2.1 billion in 2009 to over $5.1 billion in 2013.[1]

Definition

Email archiving is an automated process for preserving and protecting all inbound and outbound email messages (as well as attachments and metadata) so they can be accessed at a later date should the need arise. The benefits of email archiving include the recovery of lost or accidentally deleted emails, accelerated audit response, preservation of the intellectual property contained in business email and its attachments and “eDiscovery” in the case of litigation or internal investigations (what happened when, who said what).

Overview

Email Archiving is the process of capturing, preserving, and making easily searchable all email traffic to and from a given individual, organization, or service. Email archiving solutions capture email content either directly from the email server itself (journaling) or during message transit. The email archive can then be stored on magnetic tape, disk arrays, or now more often than not, in the cloud. Regardless of the location of the email archive, it gets indexed in order to speed future searches, and most archive vendors provide a search UI to simplify query construction.

In addition to email, attachments and associated metadata, some email archiving applications can also archive additional aspects of a mailbox including public folders, .pst files, calendars, contacts, notes, instant messages and context.

Objectives of Email Archiving

There are many motivations for enterprises or end-users to invest in an Email Archiving solution, including:

  • Data Preservation
  • Protection of Intellectual Property
  • Regulatory compliance
  • Litigation and Legal Discovery
  • Email Backup and Disaster Recovery
  • Messaging System & Storage Optimization
  • Monitoring of Internal & External Email Content
  • Records Management (Email Retention Policies)
  • Business & Email Continuity

Regulatory Compliance

As enterprises of all sizes grow more reliant on email, the business value of that content is also growing. To protect this increasingly valuable information (intellectual property), numerous standards and regulations have been enacted to require records protection and retention as well as timely response to legal (discovery) and information (FOIA) requests.[2] Modern email archiving solutions allow companies to meet regulatory requirements or corporate policies by securing and preserving data and providing flexible data management policies to enable authorized users to enact ‘legal holds’, set retention and purge policies, or conduct searches across multiple mailboxes to complete various inquiries.

Some of the primary compliance requirements driving the need for secure email archiving are (alphabetically):

Canada

Germany

Switzerland

United Kingdom

United States

Note, that many of the compliance regulations require the preservation of “electronic business communications” which consist of not only email, but may include instant messaging, file attachments, Bloomberg Messaging, Reuters Messaging, PIN-to-PIN and SMS text messages, VoIP and other electronic messaging communications used in business.

Litigation and Legal Discovery

For legal discovery, email archiving solutions will lower the overall risk of spoliation and greatly speed up electronic discovery. This is because messages are indexed, audit trails are provided, messages are deduplicated, and legal hold/preservation can be applied.[5]For litigation support, email can be retrieved quickly and a history of the email exists to prove its authenticity for chain of custody. For compliance support, email records are stored in the archive according to administrator defined retention policies. When retention periods expire, email is automatically deleted by the archiving application. In order to be compliant, an organization can intentionally destroy email messages, so long as (1) the destruction is done pursuant to a stated company policy and (2) the destruction stops immediately if an incident occurs which could give rise to a lawsuit. [6]

If an organization has multiple separate applications, for example for e-discovery, records information management, and email archiving, each application may have a separate database and it becomes difficult to de-duplicate messages and ensure that a single retention policy is being applied. From a legal point of view, this is important because once retention periods have expired the message should be purged from the archive.[7] Messages that are not purged are still discoverable, should litigation arise at a later date. As such, without a unified archive it is difficult to ensure one single retention policy. This problem is magnified for large organizations that manage tens of millions of emails per day.

Without email archiving, email likely exists on some combination of backup tapes and on end users’ local workstations. If a specific email needs to be found for an internal investigation or in response to litigation, it can take weeks to find and costs a great deal. With today’s legal discovery rules (see FRCP: http://www.uscourts.gov/uscourts/RulesAndPolicies/rules/EDiscovery_w_Notes.pdf) and compliance legislations, it has become necessary for IT departments to centrally manage and archive their organization’s email, so email can be searched and found in minutes; not days or weeks.

Email Backup and Disaster Recovery

Email is the lifeblood of many modern businesses, and enterprises today depend more on reliable email service. Virtually all enterprises implement a messaging infrastructure to connect workers and enable business processes. In the e-commerce arena, employees may require access to email to close sales and manage accounts. These employees, plus many others, may choose to keep their emails indefinitely, but some organizations may mandate that emails more than 90 days old be deleted. Setting these kinds of retention policies deserves careful consideration as a single email could help a company win a lawsuit or avoid litigation altogether. Email archiving can also be used for business continuity at the individual employee level. When one employee quits, his/her replacement can be given access to the departed employee’s archived messages in order to preserve correspondence records, and enable accelerated on-boarding.

As part of a comprehensive disaster recovery plan, an email archive can be instrumental in an organization’s effort to “get back to business”. An offsite, online archive means that secondary facilities can spin up messaging servers and quickly get access to the last mails sent/received as well as all historical messaging data. Offsite archives can take the form of disk farms (SANs) in distant DR facilities or email archives stored in public/private cloud environments. It should be noted that while email archiving products do capture and copy all messages, they are not mirrored copies of the messaging server itself, and therefore cannot help recreate user accounts/groups in the event of a disaster.

Messaging system & storage optimization

Every email message takes up space on an email system’s hard drive or some other permanent storage device (e.g. Network Attached StorageStorage Area Network, etc.). As the number of these messages increase, simple operations such as retrieving, searching, indexing, backup, etc. take utilize more information system resources. At some point older data must be removed from the production email system so that they can maintain a level of performance for their primary use, exchange of email messages. Email archiving solutions improve email server performance and storage efficiency by removing email and attachments from the messaging server based on administrator defined policies. Archived email and attachments remain accessible to end users via the existing email client applications.

References

  1. Jump up^ The Radicati Group, Inc. Releases “E-Mail Archiving Market, 2009-2013” Study
  2. Jump up^ E-Mail Archiving Growth Fueled by Federal Rule Changes
  3. Jump up^ MFDA Rules
  4. Jump up^ Principles of data access and of digital documents (GDPdU)
  5. Jump up^ The Sedona Canada Principles: Addressing Electronic Discovery, 2008
  6. Jump up^ Kest, Kristopher; Drew Sorrell; Lowndes, Drosdick, Doster, Kantor & Reed, P.A. (April 12, 2013). “Are You Allowed to Intentionally Destroy Emails? Re: Privacy in the Workplace”The National Law Review. Retrieved 17 April 2013.
  7. Jump up^ http://www.usdatavault.com/library/email_archiving_best_practices.pdf

External links

See also

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Email_archiving

 

IRS scandal could entangle Sen. Carl Levin

http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20140516/OPINION01/305160001

Internal Revenue Manual (IRM)

Internal Revenue Manual
Table of Contents

Part 1     Organization, Finance, and Management
Part 2     Information Technology
Part 3     Submission Processing
Part 4     Examining Process
Part 5     Collecting Process
Part 6     Human Resources Management
Part 7     Rulings and Agreements
Part 8     Appeals
Part 9     Criminal Investigation
Part 10     Security, Privacy and Assurance
Part 11     Communications and Liaison
Part 13     Taxpayer Advocate Service
Part 20     Penalty and Interest
Part 21     Customer Account Services
Part 22     Taxpayer Education and Assistance
Part 25     Special Topics
Part 30     Administrative
Part 31     Guiding Principles
Part 32     Published Guidance and Other Guidance to Taxpayers
Part 33     Legal Advice
Part 34     Litigation in District Court, Bankruptcy Court, Court of Federal Claims, and State Court
Part 35     Tax Court Litigation
Part 36     Appellate Litigation and Actions on Decision
Part 37     Disclosure
Part 38     Criminal Tax
Part 39     General Legal Services
Download IRM Source Files (XML) – Directory List of File Names

 

http://www.irs.gov/irm/index.html

1.10.3  Standards for Using Email

Manual Transmittal

August 30, 2012

Purpose

(1) This transmits revised IRM 1.10.3, Office of the Commissioner of Internal Revenue, Standards for Using Email.

Background

This IRM provides guidelines for using email in the most effective and productive manner. It includes guidance on formatting messages in a way that will be easily accessible for all employees, including those using the Enterprise Remote Access System (ERAP). It also includes information on security guidelines, creation and use of distribution lists, and contacts for assistance with email issues.

Material Changes

(1) Text has been revised to clarify and update information including web site references.

Effect on Other Documents

IRM 1.10.3 dated July 8, 2011, is superseded.

Audience

All IRS employees

Effective Date

(08-30-2012)Terry Lemons
Director,
Office of Communications

1.10.3.1  (06-01-2007)
Introduction

  1. Email is now commonly used in business as an official form of communication, often replacing memorandums, meetings or phone conversations. This technology option is often the most efficient way to handle business communications and responsibilities. But its benefits can lead to burdens if we do not use this powerful tool judiciously. This section defines the standards for email use in Internal Revenue Service communications.

1.10.3.2  (08-30-2012)
Security/Privacy

  1. Email messages are official documents and should reflect this perspective. Email communications can be offered as evidence in court and can be legally binding. Before sending an email, you must consider how it reflects on the Service’s image and take into account privacy, records management, and security factors.
  2. The privacy of email cannot be assured and is easily compromised. Messages can be forwarded to unintended recipients (sometimes outside the agency or even outside the government). The public we serve, or the Congress, who may have occasion to see an email message, do not differentiate between employees as individuals and our agency. We are the IRS.
  3. More information on the Service’s email security policy is available at Cybersecurity’s policy, IRM 10.8.1.4.6.3, Electronic Mail (Email) Security and IRM 10.8.1.4.6.3.1 , Privately Owned Email Accounts.

1.10.3.2.1  (07-08-2011)
Secure Messaging & Encryption

  1. The Internal Revenue Service processes Sensitive But Unclassified (SBU) information. The definition of SBU information is any information that requires protection due to the risk and magnitude of loss or harm to the IRS or the privacy to which individuals are entitled under 5 United States Code (USC) Section 552a (the Privacy Act), which could result from inadvertent or deliberate disclosure, alteration, or destruction. See IRM 10.8.1, Information Technology (It) Security, Policy and Guidance, for guidance on Sensitive But Unclassified (SBU) information.
  2. Personally Identifiable Information (PII) is a specific type of sensitive information. PII includes the personal data of taxpayers, and also the personal information of employees, contractors, applicants and visitors to the IRS. Refer to the Personally Identifiable Information (PII) section of IRM 10.8.1 for additional PII guidance
  3. You should never consider email secure. Do not include taxpayer, SBU, or PII information in email messages or attachments unless you use IRS approved encryption technology.
  4. Use the Secure Enterprise Messaging System (SEMS, or ” Secure Messaging” ) for sending Microsoft Outlook messages that contain SBU data. Secure Messaging enables you to digitally encrypt email messages and attachments for transmission among IRS email users including Criminal Investigation,, the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA), and Chief Counsel employees. In order for you to send a secure message through Outlook, both you and the recipient must have Secure Messaging installed. This allows authorized employees to transmit SBU information to other authorized employees within the system once they have been enrolled and received training.
  5. Secure Messaging enrollment is an automated process for all LAN accounts with an Exchange mailbox in IRS. You can find the instructions for configuring the Outlook client to use the certificates at the Secure Enterprise Messaging Systems (SEMS) web site: http://documentation.sems.enterprise.irs.gov/.
  6. Alternatively, you may encrypt files to be e-mailed as attachments using the latest software provided by MITS. Instructions are provided at http://findit-mits.web.irs.gov/.
  7. IRS employees may not send SBU data by electronic mail outside the IRS unless an IT approved exception is obtained. See the Electronic Mail and Secure Messaging section of IRM 11.3.1 for details.

1.10.3.2.2  (07-08-2011)
Suspicious Emails / “Social Engineering”

  1. Individuals seeking to commit fraud or intending harm to the IRS or its employees often engage in “social engineering,” wherein they use an alias and a seemingly innocuous cover story in order to gain the victim’s confidence and gather sensitive information. Such scammers may use email, and try to trick you into revealing your password, or personal information. If you receive a suspicious, bogus, or phishing email:
    • Do not open any attachments
    • Do not reply
    • “Forward” the email to the electronic mailbox, (phishing@irs.gov)
    • Delete the email after forwarding

    For more information, see IRM 21.1.3 – Accounts Management and Compliance Services Operations.

1.10.3.2.3  (07-08-2011)
Emails as Possible Federal Records

  1. All federal employees and federal contractors are required by law to preserve records containing adequate and proper documentation of the organization, functions, policies, decisions, procedures, and essential transactions of the agency. Records must be properly stored and preserved, available for retrieval and subject to appropriate approved disposition schedules.
  2. The Federal Records Act applies to email records just as it does to records you create using other media. Emails are records when they are:
    • Created or received in the transaction of agency business
    • Appropriate for preservation as evidence of the government’s function and activities, or
    • Valuable because of the information they contain

     

  3. If you create or receive email messages during the course of your daily work, you are responsible for ensuring that you manage them properly. The Treasury Department’s current email policy requires emails and attachments that meet the definition of a federal record be added to the organization’s files by printing them (including the essential transmission data) and filing them with related paper records. If transmission and receipt data are not printed by the email system, annotate the paper copy. More information on IRS records management requirements is available at http://erc.web.irs.gov/Displayanswers/Question.asp?FolderID=4&CategoryID=5 or see the Records Management Handbook, IRM 1.15.1 http://publish.no.irs.gov/IRM/P01/PDF/31421A03.PDF).
  4. An email determined to be a federal record may eventually be considered as having historical value by the National Archivist prior to disposal. Therefore, ensure that all your communications are professional in tone.
  5. Please note that maintaining a copy of an email or its attachments within the IRS email MS Outlook application does not meet the requirements of maintaining an official record. Therefore, print and file email and its attachments if they are either permanent records or if they relate to a specific case.

1.10.3.2.4  (08-30-2012)
Emails are Subject to FOIA

  1. The public is aware of the role emails play in agency internal operations and emails are included in a growing number of Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests. Emails that are responsive to a FOIA request must be released unless the information contained in the email falls into one of nine very specific categories of exemptions. (See IRM 11.3.13 for more on FOIA processing). There is no category of exemption to protect the author or the Service from embarrassment.
  2. Emails provided in response to a FOIA must include the addressee, date and time. The address list, date and time are considered part of the record for both FOIA and record management purposes.
  3. Do not delete a message or attachment that is the subject of a congressional, Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), or discovery request or that is needed for litigation.

1.10.3.2.4.1  (08-30-2012)
Emails may be subject to electronic discovery

  1. Certain electronic records (like emails) may need to be identified and preserved when litigation is anticipated. In this case, you will be notified by your manager or Chief Counsel that relevant information must be preserved as part of the legal process. See Office of Chief Counsel Notice CC-2010-008, Complying with E-Discovery (http://mits.stg.web.irs.gov/ES/crsd/CRM/Home/E-Disc/Notice%20CC-2010-008,%20Complying%20with%20E-Discovery%20Rules%20&%20Identifying%20&%20Preserving%20ESI;%20dated%20May%204,%202010.pdf), for information on E-Discovery.

1.10.3.2.5  (08-30-2012)
Inappropriate Emails

  1. IRM 10.8.27, Information Technology (IT) Security, Internal Revenue Service Policy On Limited Personal Use Of Government Information Technology Resources, defines the minimum standard for acceptable personal use of Government IT resources by IRS employees. The first exhibit, includes a summary of prohibited activities that includes creating, copying, transmitting, or retransmitting chain letters or other unauthorized mass mailings regardless of their subject matter.
  2. IRM 10.8.1.4.6.2.1(5), , Information Technology (IT) Security, Policy and Guidance states “Email spamming, sending or forwarding chain letters, other junk email, or inappropriate messages shall be prohibited. ” In addition, IRM 10.8.1.4.6.3 (7) states “Any use of IRS IT resources, including email, shall be made with the understanding that such use may not be secure, is not private, is not anonymous and may be subject to disclosure under FOIA.”
  3. If you receive an inappropriate email, please notify your immediate supervisor or your local Data Security Area. Do not forward it to your co-workers, friends or family, etc. You should delete the inappropriate email after notifying the proper authorities.

1.10.3.3  (07-08-2011)
Message Format

  1. Most IRS employees have access to email, but not everyone has the same email environment. Many employees work offsite and their email messages must go through the Enterprise Remote Access System (ERAP). A result is that these users often experience slower access and transmission. Email messages that IRS office workers download in fractions of seconds can often take longer for a field user. Additionally, graphics and stationery can’t be read by adaptive equipment and can freeze the user’s system.
  2. Unnecessary messages or excess volume of data within a message require time for the recipient to review and digest. Keep the reader’s situation and need in mind at all times.

1.10.3.3.1  (07-08-2011)
Don’t Slow Down the System

  1. To avoid slowing down transmission of information:
    • Use Arial or another simple font on a plain background.
    • Do not use animation, fancy background, “wallpapers,” borders, graphics and photographs as part of your “stationery” or message format. Exceptions will only be allowed for special IRS Commissioner initiatives.
    • Refrain from sending large attachments to work groups or audiences. Remember every email message and any attachments, embedded graphics and photographs require a copy for each Exchange server store where each recipient’s mailbox resides. Instead store the document on an IRS public web archive or SharePoint repository and insert a hyperlink into the message. Ensure the permissions allow access by all recipients prior to sending the message.

     

1.10.3.3.2  (06-01-2007)
Categorize Messages

  1. A meaningful subject line helps recipients prioritize their email. Categorize all email by type. Include only related information in a message. If there is another topic you wish to address, send it in a separate message. This makes it easier for the recipient to manage and respond to messages on different topics.
  2. Use the follow-up flag feature to identify items with required follow-up dates.

1.10.3.3.3  (06-01-2007)
Designate Priority

  1. Most email will be normal priority. Designate an email as high priority only if the receiver will need to act on the message immediately. If your message is truly urgent, consider trying to reach the recipient by phone or in person.
    • “!” – High. Example – Computers will be down this weekend so overtime will not be scheduled and credit hours will not be approved. Example – We need volunteers for a task force in Washington that will convene in two weeks. Nominations are due this Friday.
    • “blank” – Normal (the default)
    • “down arrow” – Low. Example – The territory office of (another operating division) in another city has moved; its new address is…

     

1.10.3.3.4  (06-01-2007)
Designate Sensitivity

  1. Most email is of normal sensitivity. Messages designated as ” private” or “confidential” should not be forwarded – but the system allows for this. Marking a message with one of these settings is advisory only. Recipients can take any actions on the message that they want to, such as forwarding the message to others.
  2. To designate sensitivity, from the “View” menu, select “Options” then select the appropriate designation.
    • Private – Example: Communications with Labor Relations about an issue involving a particular employee.
    • Confidential – Example: A proposal you are sharing with someone for their input, but which has not been shared with those who will approve or implement the procedures.
    • Normal (default)

     

1.10.3.3.5  (07-08-2011)
Follow Guidelines of Email Common Sense and Etiquette

  1. To improve the effectiveness of email, follow these rules of etiquette and common sense guidelines:
    1. Consider whether email is the best method for your communication. Sometimes, two-way dialogue by phone, Office Communicator or in person may be more effective. At other times, email may be best if you need written documentation.
    2. Choose your recipients carefully. When selecting from the global address list, watch for duplicate names. If you frequently sendmessages to the same individuals, put them in your Personal Address Book. If two or more individuals have the same names, check the employees’ properties in the Global Address List to ensure your intended recipient is the right person in the right location.
    3. Do not use a distribution list (as a convenience to you) unless your message is appropriate for everyone on that list.
    4. Use the subject line to categorize messages. Do not include any confidential or sensitive information in the subject line.
    5. Forward messages only when necessary. Do not forward to people who have already received the message. Example: Do not resend Commissioner All-Employee messages.
    6. Be concise.
    7. Review your messages for accuracy in content, spelling, and punctuation. Hint: Set auto spell check to check all messages before sending and review any changes made .
    8. If you say that a file is attached, attach it. Hint: attach the file before you compose the message.
    9. Insert hypertext links to large documents stored on IRS document repositories.
    10. Maintain your Inbox.
    11. Respond promptly to messages.
    12. Routinely purge your mailbox of old and unnecessary messages (but do not delete email that could be federal records).
    13. Use the “To” address line for the primary recipient.
    14. Use the carbon copy “cc” and blind carbon copy “bcc” features appropriately. Avoid copying people who do not need to see your message. In an internal office environment, it is rarely appropriate to use the “bcc” feature.
    15. Use “Reply to all” only if all the original recipients need to know your response. Otherwise, reply only to the sender.
    16. Never use “Reply to all” when you receive an email as a member of a large geographic or servicewide distribution list.
    17. Use conversational grammar.
    18. Do not use all caps or all lower case. Use punctuation.
    19. Use the “out of office assistant” or ” auto forward” features when you will be out of the office for an extended time.
    20. If you receive any messages with a known or suspected virus, delete them immediately and report the matter appropriately .
    21. Avoid background, stationery or graphics.
    22. To accommodate those with visual impairments, select font and background colors that provide sufficient contrast and avoid unusual color combinations. For example, use the default font color (usually black or blue) rather than selecting red or green, use the default background color rather than selecting a background color and do not use the text highlighting feature.
    23. Help prevent unnecessary email by telling recipients when your message does not require a reply.
    24. Manage your email more effectively by using Outlook features such as voting buttons and invitation options. It will be easier for recipients to respond and easier to manage and track the results.

     

1.10.3.3.6  (08-30-2012)
Limit Size of Attachments

  1. Large attachments can degrade overall system efficiency, so you should limit the transmission of large files as email attachments whenever possible.
  2. Consider alternatives for attachments larger than 10MB:
    If … Then …
    “Attachment” has widespread impact and a shelf life
    • Have it posted to your organization’s intranet site for retrieval, and
    • Include the hyperlink in the email message.
    • -or-
    • Save it to your shared directory, and
    • Include file and path name in the email message.
    “Attachment” does not have widespread impact and/or a shelf life
    • Zip large files for faster transmission.
    • Eliminate official IRS seal from memos.
    • If possible, remove graphics, borders, pictures and non-standard fonts.
    “Attachment” is a large graphic presentation (i.e., PowerPoint, screen shots, scanned documents)
    • Send it only to people who need to use or see the actual file.
    • Convert the information to a text file for those who only need the information.
    • Zip the file.
    • Have it posted to your organization’s intranet site and email the hyperlink.

     

  3. If you are responding with an attachment, use “Forward ” instead of “Reply” because attachments do not stay with replies.
  4. If you want to save the email message but do not need the attachment, follow these instructions:
    • Open the message,
    • Right click the attachment icon, and
    • Select remove from the menu.
    • Close file. Select “yes” at the “Do you want to Save changes?” prompt.

    This will also save disk space.

1.10.3.3.7  (06-01-2007)
Malicious Attachments

  1. Ensure attachments are safe from viruses. Open attachments only if you trust the source and are expecting the attached file. Because of the impact the spreading of worms and viruses have on the IRS network, the Enterprise Messaging System is now configured to block all files with particular extension. If a file is sent via email with certain extensions (such as .exe, .vbs and .lnk), the message will be deleted without delivery.
  2. A number of virus variants try to bypass the IRS virus scanning software by including their damaging payload within a .zip file. Be cautious with any message you receive containing an attachment with a .zip file extension, and only unzip the file only if you trust the source.
  3. When you receive an email message with an attachment, save both the email and the attachment to a hard drive or network drive as soon as possible and remove the message and attachment from your mailbox. You free up space on your server by doing so.

1.10.3.4  (07-08-2011)
Using and Creating Distribution Lists

  1. Distribution groups/lists are a convenience when messages need to be sent to a large defined group. They allow users to send email messages to each individual on the list without selecting individual names. However, you should use them judiciously.

1.10.3.4.1  (07-08-2011)
Personal Distribution Lists

  1. Personal distribution lists are created by an individual user. Use your Outlook Help feature, keyword: personal distribution list, for instructions on creating and sharing personal lists.

1.10.3.4.2  (06-01-2007)
Global Distribution Lists

  1. IT and the SEMS staff can create global distribution lists for groups of practically any size and for any situation. These distribution lists are available for use from the global address list on Outlook. The list owner determines who will be authorized to use the list.
  2. There are several different types of global distribution lists.
    Location specific Considered local in scope, these lists contain members from a local site. For example, functional coordinators within a service center campus.
    Special needs Cross multiple organization boundaries and are often created for temporary groups, such as task forces.
    Large lists Contain more than 100 members and require specific set up and delivery restrictions. The AWSS all employee list (&AWSS Employees) is an example.

Note:

The use of large global lists should be confined to those who have a business need to communicate with the list. Examples include messages sent by IT to alert users of systems related issues or distribution of other approved servicewide communications tools such as IRS headlines or Leaders’ Alert.

 Lists created from a databaseMembership for these lists is determined by specifying certain criteria within a database (such as TAPS or TIMIS) and populating the list with names meeting the criteria. Changes to membership cannot be made directly to the list, but must be made to information contained in the database. The SB/SE all-employee list (&SBSE All) is an example.

 

1.10.3.4.3  (04-01-2003)
Using Global Lists

  1. Before using a global distribution list to send an email message that requires follow-up actions or commitment of resources by recipients outside of your division, always discuss the requirement with the applicable Division Commissioner’s office.

1.10.3.4.4  (07-08-2011)
Requesting a Global Distribution List

  1. Contact OSGetServices (1-866-743-5748) or TDD/TTY: 1-866-435-7486 to request creation of a new global distribution list (DL). You will need to provide the following information :
    • Business need justification
    • Scope – to whom it applies
    • Anticipated “shelf life” of DL
    • Name and number of the individual charged with maintaining the DL
    • Proposed list of initial DL members
    • If the list is automated, the conditional criteria of the members

     

    Note:

    Distribution group/list names must be pre-approved by the designated business unit point of contact prior to opening the ITAMS ticket.

     

1.10.3.4.5  (07-08-2011)
Managing a List

  1. Distribution group/list managers can find information on modifying a list in the SEMS Documentation Library online at http://documentation.sems.enterprise.irs.gov/.

1.10.3.5  (04-01-2003)
Messages Intended for All Employees

  1. The IRS has the capability to send email messages to all employees; however this method of communication should be used sparingly. If you have a message you believe should be communicated servicewide, contact your business unit’s communication office.

1.10.3.5.1  (06-01-2007)
IRS Headlines…and more

  1. Generally, information requiring communication to all employees is distributed via the IRS Headlines … and more electronic newsletter. The C&L Internal Communications (IC) branch distributes IRS Headlines…and more every Monday using the all employee global distribution list. Articles for IRS Headlines …and more should contain time-sensitive information (something happening last week, this week or next week) relevant to a cross-section of IRS managers and employees.
  2. If you think you have information appropriate for IRS Headlines… and more, you should take the following steps:
    1. Originator discusses topic and schedule with the business unit’s communication office. (If none, contact IC directly http://irweb.irs.gov/AboutIRS/bu/cl/cldir/9296.aspx.)
    2. Business unit communicator discusses topic and schedule with theIRS Headlines editor.
    3. IC determines whether the topic is appropriate for IRS Headlines …and more.
    4. Originator and business unit communicator draft message and submit it to Internal Communications the Headlines editor (http://irweb.irs.gov/AboutIRS/bu/cl/comm/ic/default.aspx).
    5. IC will provide editorial feedback on content, length, tone, and key messages.
    6. IC will schedule article for publication in the IRS Headlines…and more electronic newsletter.
    7. IC will suggest ways to incorporate message into other internal communications products, when appropriate.

     

1.10.3.5.2  (06-01-2007)
Special All-Employee Emails

  1. On rare occasions, special circumstances may require the issuance of an all-employee email separate from IRS Headlines … and more. Any message submitted for distribution as an all-employee email will be subject to a stringent review process. The communications manager in your business unit is your initial point of contact when deciding whether to start the process of creating an all-employee email.
  2. When submitting a message for distribution to all employees, you must provide the following information:
    • Significance to employees (Is there something they must know immediately to do their jobs correctly, to comply with the law, to prevent a systems failure, etc.?)
    • Reason for extreme time sensitivity (Why is this information so critical to employees that it cannot wait for inclusion in the next edition of Headlines?)
    • Necessity of email delivery instead of Headlines or other method (Why does this information have to be sent via a special email? Why wouldn’t IRweb (intranet) or Headlines be more appropriate ?)
    • Desired outcome (What immediate action do you want employees to take?)
    • Business objective

     

  3. The C&L Internal Communication Branch will determine the best method of communicating the message based on the information submitted.

1.10.3.6  (07-08-2011)
Assistance with Email Issues

  1. Use the following table to determine where to get assistance with email issues.
    Topic Resource
    Security Concerns Immediately contact the Computer Security Incident Response Center (CSIRC) at http://www.csirc.web.irs.gov/
    Email: csirc@csirc.irs.gov
    (866) 216-4809 (toll-free)
    (202) 283-4809 (local)
    (202) 283-0345 (FAX)
    Technical problems w/Outlook Submit OS GetServices ticket online at http://getservices.web.irs.gov/or by phone: 1-866-743-5748 or TDD/TTY: 1-866-435-7486.
    Creating or changing criteria for an Automated Distribution Group/List (Requires an ITAMS ticket) Contact OS GetServices online at http://getservices.web.irs.gov/or by phone: at 1-866-743-5748 or TDD/TTY: 1-866-435-7486.
    SPAM issues DO NOT open email; forward questionable email to *SPAM with “Possible SPAM” in subject line.
    For additional information, take the Anti-SPAM Procedures link contained in the IT Navigation Guide.

     

Exhibit 1.10.3-1
Reducing the Size of Your Mailbox

The Secure Enterprise Messaging system (SEMS) establishes a standard size of 500 MB (500 megabytes) for individual mailboxes. The system mails you daily warning messages that the limit is being approached when your mailbox reaches a size of 475 MB. When it exceeds the 500 MB limit, you will receive the following warning each time you attempt to send a message:

  • “You have exceeded your storage limit on your mailbox ” .
  • Delete some mail from your mailbox or contact your system administrator to adjust your storage limit. (Consider whether any of the items you want to delete may be a federal record. IRM 1.10.3.3.2 above.)

It is not the practice of the SEMS staff to adjust any individual mailbox storage limits, but rather to provide guidance on reducing the size of the contents. The Outlook Help menu provides instructions for enabling and configuring both Auto-archiving and Rules to manage mail and mailbox folders to maintain proper storage limits.

Exhibit 1.10.3-2
Postscript/Signature

Your email signature section should include only the identifying information that would otherwise be included in any official IRS communication (i.e. business card, memorandum, letter, etc.):

  • Name
  • Title
  • Organization
  • Street/email address
  • Telephone/fax numbers

Refrain from including quotes or other personal messages as part of the signature section.

Follow these steps to create an automatic signature in Outlook:

  • Select “Options” from the “Tools” menu. Choose the “mail format” tab. Use the ” Signatures” section at the bottom to create your personal signature line.

http://www.irs.gov/irm/part1/irm_01-010-003.html

 

Part 2. Information Technology

Table of Contents

President Wrong on Citizens United Case

By Bradley A. Smith

Tonight the president engaged in demogoguery of the worst kind, when he claimed that last week’s Supreme Court decision in Citizens United v. FEC, “open[ed] the floodgates for special interests — including foreign corporations — to spend without limit in our elections. Well I don’t think American elections should be bankrolled by America’s most powerful interests, or worse, by foreign entities.”

The president’s statement is false.

The Court held that 2 U.S.C. Section 441a, which prohibits all corporate political spending, is unconstitutional. Foreign nationals, specifically defined to include foreign corporations, are prohibiting from making “a contribution or donation of money or ather thing of value, or to make an express or implied promise to make a contribution or donation, in connection with a Federal, State or local election” under 2 U.S.C. Section 441e, which was not at issue in the case. Foreign corporations are also prohibited, under 2 U.S.C. 441e, from making any contribution or donation to any committee of any political party, and they prohibited from making any “expenditure, independent expenditure, or disbursement for an electioneering communication.”

This is either blithering ignorance of the law or demagoguery of the worst kind.

http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/193894/president-wrong-i-citizens-united-i-case/bradley-smith

 

 – Bradley A. Smith is Josiah H. Blackmore II/Shirley M. Nault Designated Professor of Law at Capital University Law School

Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission

Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, 558 U.S. ___ (2010), (Docket No. 08-205), is a US constitutional law case. The United States Supreme Court held that the First Amendment prohibits the government from restricting political independent expenditures by corporationsassociations, or labor unions. This followed a line of decisions starting with Buckley v. Valeo, 424 U.S. 1 (1976) interpreting freedom of speech to include spending money. The case has remained intensely controversial for increasing the influence in elections that money can have, in contrast to most other developed countries where limits are imposed on all election spending.

In the case, the conservative lobbying group Citizens United wanted to air a film critical of Hillary Clinton and to advertise the film during television broadcasts in apparent violation of the 2002 Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act (commonly known as the McCain–Feingold Act or “BCRA”).[2] Section 203 of BCRA defined an “electioneering communication” as a broadcast, cable, or satellite communication that mentioned a candidate within 60 days of a general election or 30 days of a primary, and prohibited such expenditures by corporations and unions. The United States District Court for the District of Columbia held that §203 of BCRA applied and prohibited Citizens United from advertising the film Hillary: The Movie in broadcasts or paying to have it shown on television within 30 days of the 2008 Democratic primaries.[1][3] The Supreme Court reversed this decision, striking down those provisions of BCRA that prohibited corporations (including nonprofit corporations) and unions from making independent expenditures and “electioneering communications”.[2] The majority decision overruled Austin v. Michigan Chamber of Commerce (1990) and partially overruled McConnell v. Federal Election Commission (2003).[4] The Court, however, upheld requirements for public disclosure by sponsors of advertisements (BCRA §201 and §311). The case did not involve the federal ban on direct contributions from corporations or unions to candidate campaigns or political parties, which remain illegal in races for federal office.[5]

 

 

Background

The Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002 (known as BCRA or McCain–Feingold Act)—specifically §203, which modified the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971, 2 U.S.C. § 441b—prohibited corporations and unions from using their general treasury to fund “electioneering communications” (broadcast advertisements mentioning a candidate) within 30 days before a primary or 60 days before a general election. During the 2004 presidential campaign, a conservative nonprofit 501(c)(4) organization named Citizens United filed a complaint before the Federal Election Commission (FEC) charging that advertisements for Michael Moore’sfilm Fahrenheit 9/11, a documentary critical of the Bush administration’s response to the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, constituted political advertising and thus could not be aired within the 30 days before a primary election or 60 days before a general election. The FEC dismissed the complaint after finding no evidence that broadcast advertisements for the movie and featuring a candidate within the proscribed time limits had actually been made.[6] The FEC later dismissed a second complaint which argued that the movie itself constituted illegal corporate spending advocating the election or defeat of a candidate, which was illegal under the Taft-Hartley Act of 1947 and the Federal Election Campaign Act Amendments of 1974. In dismissing that complaint, the FEC found that:

The complainant alleged that the release and distribution of FAHRENHEIT 9/11 constituted an independent expenditure because the film expressly advocated the defeat of President Bush and that by being fully or partially responsible for the film’s release, Michael Moore and other entities associated with the film made excessive and/or prohibited contributions to unidentified candidates. The Commission found no reason to believe the respondents violated the Act because the film, associated trailers and website represented bona fide commercial activity, not “contributions” or “expenditures” as defined by the Federal Election Campaign Act.[7]

In the wake of these decisions, Citizens United sought to establish itself as a bona fide commercial film maker, producing several documentary films between 2005 and 2007. By early 2008, it sought to run television commercials to promote its latest political documentary Hillary: The Movie and to air the movie on DirecTV.[8] The movie was highly critical of then-Senator Hillary Clinton, with the District Court describing the movie as an elongated version of a negative 30-second television spot. In January 2008, the United States District Court for the District of Columbia ruled that the television advertisements for Hillary: The Movie violated the BCRA restrictions of “electioneering communications” within 30 days of a primary. Though the political action committee claimed that the film was fact-based and nonpartisan, the lower court found that the film had no purpose other than to discredit Clinton’s candidacy for president.[9] The Supreme Court docketed the case on August 18, 2008,[10] and heard oral argument on March 24, 2009.[8][11][12]

Before the Supreme Court

During the original oral argument, Deputy Solicitor General Malcolm L. Stewart (representing the FEC) argued that under Austin v. Michigan Chamber of Commerce, the government would have the power to ban books if those books contained even one sentence expressly advocating the election or defeat of a candidate and were published or distributed by a corporation or union.[13] In response to this line of questioning, Stewart further argued that under Austin the government could ban the digital distribution of political books over the Amazon Kindle or prevent a union from hiring a writer to author a political book.[14]

According to a 2012 article in The New Yorker by Jeffrey Toobin, the Court expected after oral argument to rule on the narrow question that had originally been presented: could Citizens United show the film? At the subsequent conference among the justices after oral argument, the vote was 5–4 in favor of Citizens United being allowed to show the film. The justices voted the same as they had in Federal Election Commission v. Wisconsin Right to Life, Inc., a similar 2007 case, with Chief Justice Roberts and Justices Scalia, Kennedy, Thomas and Alito in the majority.[15]

Chief Justice John Roberts, per the privilege of that office when in the majority, was in charge of assigning the majority opinion, and chose to do it himself. His opinion restricted itself narrowly, holding that the BCRA allowed the showing of the film. A draft concurrence by Kennedy argued that the court could and should have gone much further. The other justices in the majority began agreeing with Kennedy, and convinced Roberts to reassign the writing and allow Kennedy’s concurrence to instead become the majority opinion.[15]

On the other side, John Paul Stevens, the most senior justice in the minority, assigned the dissent to David Souter, who announced his retirement from the Court while he was working on it. The final draft went beyond critiquing the majority. Toobin described it as “air[ing] some of the Court’s dirty laundry,” writing that Souter’s dissent accused Roberts of having manipulated Court procedures to reach his desired result—an expansive decision that, Souter claimed, changed decades of election law and ruled on issues neither party to the litigation had presented.[15]

According to Toobin, Roberts was concerned that Souter’s dissent, likely to be his last opinion for the Court, could “damage the Court’s credibility.” He agreed with the minority to withdraw the opinion and schedule the case for reargument. However, when he did, the “Questions Presented” to the parties were more expansive, touching on the issues Kennedy had identified. According to Toobin, the eventual result was therefore a foregone conclusion from that point on, because the same majority had supported it.[15] Toobin’s account has been criticized for drawing conclusions unsupported by the evidence in his article.[16]

On June 29, 2009, the last day of the term, the Court issued an order directing the parties to re-argue the case on September 9 after briefing whether it might be necessary to overrule Austin and/or McConnell v. Federal Election Commission to decide the case.[17] Justice Stevens noted in his dissent that in its prior motion for summary judgment Citizens United had abandoned its facial challenge of BCRA §203, with the parties agreeing to the dismissal of the claim.[18]

Justice Sotomayor sat on the bench for the first time during the second round of oral arguments. This was the first case argued by then-Solicitor General and future Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan. Former Bush Solicitor General Ted Olson and First Amendment lawyer Floyd Abrams argued for Citizens United, and former Clinton Solicitor General Seth Waxman defended the statute on behalf of various supporters.[19] Legal scholar Erwin Chemerinsky called it “one of the most important First Amendment cases in years”.[20]

Opinions of the Court

Overview

The Supreme Court held in Citizens United that it was unconstitutional to ban free speech through the limitation of independent communications by corporations, associations, and unions,[21] i.e. that corporations and labor unions may spend their own money to support or oppose political candidates through independent communications like television advertisements.[22] This ruling was frequently interpreted as permitting corporations and unions to donate to political campaigns,[23] or else removing limits on how much a donor can contribute to a campaign.[24] However, these claims are incorrect, as the ruling did not affect the 1907 Tillman Act‘s ban on corporate campaign donations (as the Court noted explicitly in its decision[25]), nor the prohibition on foreign corporate donations to American campaigns,[26] nor did it concern campaign contribution limits.[27] The Citizens United decision did not disturb prohibitions on corporate contributions to candidates, and it did not address whether the government could regulate contributions to groups that make independent expenditures.[22] The Citizens United ruling did however remove the previous ban on corporations and organizations using their treasury funds for direct advocacy. These groups were freed to expressly endorse or call to vote for or against specific candidates, actions that were previously prohibited.[28]

The majority opinion, written by Justice Kennedy, was relatively short, less than 30 pages; the dissenting opinions of Justices Kennedy and Scalia in Austin v. Michigan State Chamber of Commerce and McConnell v. Federal Election Commission actually provide a more complete picture of the majority’s thinking, in many respects. Chief Justice Roberts wrote a concurring opinion to address concerns about stare decisis, andJustice Scalia wrote a concurring opinion about the history and meaning of the First Amendment. Justice Thomas wrote separately to announce his disagreement with the majority’s decision not to strike down the mandatory disclosure requirements in BCRA. Justice Stevens wrote a lengthy dissent to analyze the development of First Amendment doctrine and campaign finance restrictions and to rebut the arguments of the majority and concurring opinions.

Majority opinion

Justice Kennedy, the author of the Court’s opinion.

Justice Kennedy’s majority opinion[29] found that the BCRA §203 prohibition of all independent expenditures by corporations and unions violated the First Amendment’s protection of free speech. The majority wrote, “If the First Amendment has any force, it prohibits Congress from fining or jailing citizens, or associations of citizens, for simply engaging in political speech.”[30]

Justice Kennedy’s opinion for the majority also noted that because the First Amendment (and the Court) does not distinguish between media and other corporations, these restrictions would allow Congress to suppress political speech in newspapers, books, television, and blogs.[2] The Court overruled Austin, which had held that a state law that prohibited corporations from using treasury money to support or oppose candidates in elections did not violate the First and Fourteenth Amendments. The Court also overruled that portion of McConnell that upheld BCRA’s restriction of corporate spending on “electioneering communications”. The Court’s ruling effectively freed corporations and unions to spend money both on “electioneering communications” and to directly advocate for the election or defeat of candidates (although not to contribute directly to candidates or political parties).

The majority argued that the First Amendment protects associations of individuals in addition to individual speakers, and further that the First Amendment does not allow prohibitions of speech based on the identity of the speaker. Corporations, as associations of individuals, therefore have speech rights under the First Amendment. Because spending money is essential to disseminating speech, as established in Buckley v. Valeo, limiting a corporation’s ability to spend money is unconstitutional because it limits the ability of its members to associate effectively and to speak on political issues.

The majority overruled Austin because that decision allowed different restrictions on speech-related spending based on corporate identity. Additionally, the majority argued that Austin was based on an “equality” rationale – trying to equalize speech between different speakers – that the Court had previously rejected as illegitimate under the First Amendment in Buckley. The Michigan statute at issue inAustin had distinguished between corporate and union spending, prohibiting the former while allowing the latter. The Austin Court, over vigorous dissent by Justices Scalia, Kennedy, and Sandra Day O’Connor, had held that such distinctions were within the legislature’s prerogative. In Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, however, the majority argued that the First Amendment purposefully keeps the government from interfering in the “marketplace of ideas” and “rationing” speech, and it is not up to the legislatures or the courts to create a sense of “fairness” by restricting speech.[29]

The majority also criticized Austin’s reasoning that the “distorting effect” of large corporate expenditures constituted a risk of corruption or the appearance of corruption. Rather, the majority argued that the government had no place in determining whether large expenditures distorted an audience’s perceptions, and that the type of “corruption” that might justify government controls on spending for speech had to relate to some form of “quid pro quo” transaction: “There is no such thing as too much speech.”[29] The public has a right to have access to all information and to determine the reliability and importance of the information. Additionally, the majority did not believe that reliable evidence substantiated the risk of corruption or the appearance of corruption, and so this rationale did not satisfy strict scrutiny.

The majority opinion relied heavily on the reasoning and principles of the landmark campaign finance case of Buckley and First National Bank of Boston v. Bellotti, in which the Court struck down a broad prohibition against independent expenditures by corporations in ballot initiatives and referenda.[29] Specifically, the majority echoed Bellotti’s rejection of categories based on a corporation’s purpose. The majority argued that to grant First Amendment protections to media corporations but not others presented a host of problems, and so all corporations should be equally protected from expenditure restrictions.

The Court found that BCRA §§201 and 311, provisions requiring disclosure of the funder, were valid as applied to the movie advertisements and to the movie itself.[29]

Concurrences

Chief Justice Roberts, with whom Justice Alito joined, wrote separately “to address the important principles of judicial restraint and stare decisis implicated in this case”.[31]

Roberts wrote to further explain and defend the main opinion’s statement that “there is a difference between judicial restraint and judicial abdication.” Roberts explained why the Court must sometimes overrule prior decisions. Had prior Courts never gone against stare decisis, for example, “segregation would be legal, minimum wage laws would be unconstitutional, and the Government could wiretap ordinary criminal suspects without first obtaining warrants”. Roberts’ concurrence recited a plethora of case law in which the court had ruled against precedent. Ultimately, Roberts argued that “stare decisis…counsels deference to past mistakes, but provides no justification for making new ones”.[31]

Justice Scalia joined the opinion of the Court, but also wrote a concurring opinion which was joined by Justice Alito in full and by Justice Thomas in part. Scalia addressed Justice Stevens‘ dissent, specifically with regard to the original understanding of the First Amendment. Scalia stated that Stevens’ dissent was “in splendid isolation from the text of the First Amendment…It never shows why ‘the freedom of speech’ that was the right of Englishmen did not include the freedom to speak in association with other individuals, including association in the corporate form.” He further considered the dissent’s exploration of the Framers’ views about the “role of corporations in society” to be misleading, and even if valid, irrelevant to the text. Scalia principally argued that the First Amendment was written in “terms of speech, not speakers” and that “Its text offers no foothold for excluding any category of speaker.”[32] Scalia argued that the Free Press clause was originally intended to protect the distribution of written materials and did not only apply to the media specifically. This understanding supported the majority’s contention that the Constitution does not allow the Court to separate corporations into media and non-media categories.[29]

Justice Thomas wrote a separate opinion concurring in all but the upholding of the disclosure provisions. In order to protect the anonymity of contributors to organizations exercising free speech, Thomas would have struck down the reporting requirements of BCRA §201 and §311 as well, rather than allowing them to be challenged only on a case-specific basis. Thomas’s primary argument was that anonymous free speech is protected and that making contributor lists public makes the contributors vulnerable to retaliation, citing instances of retaliation against contributors to both sides of a then recent California voter initiative. Thomas also expressed concern that such retaliation could extend to retaliation by elected officials. Thomas did not consider “as-applied challenges” to be sufficient to protect against the threat of retaliation.[33]

Dissent

Justice Stevens, the author of the dissenting opinion.

A dissenting opinion by Justice Stevens[34] was joined by Justice GinsburgJustice Breyer, and Justice Sotomayor. To emphasize his unhappiness with the majority, Stevens read part of his 90 page dissent from the bench.[35] Stevens concurred in the Court’s decision to sustain BCRA’s disclosure provisions, but dissented from the principal holding of the majority opinion. The dissent argued that the Court’s ruling “threatens to undermine the integrity of elected institutions across the Nation. The path it has taken to reach its outcome will, I fear, do damage to this institution.” He wrote: “A democracy cannot function effectively when its constituent members believe laws are being bought and sold.”

Justice Stevens also argued that the Court addressed a question not raised by the litigants when it found BCRA §203 to be facially unconstitutional, and that the majority “changed the case to give themselves an opportunity to change the law”.[29] He argued that the majority had expanded the scope beyond the questions presented by the appellant and that therefore a sufficient record for judging the case did not exist. Stevens argued that at a minimum the Court should have remanded the case for a fact-finding hearing, and that the majority did not consider other compilations of data, such as the Congressional record for justifying BCRA §203.

Stevens referenced a number of major First Amendment cases to argue that the Court had long recognized that to deny Congress the power to safeguard against “the improper use of money to influence the result [of an election] is to deny to the nation in a vital particular the power of self protection”.