J. Russell George
Elijah Cummings (D-Md), Rep. Matt Cartwright (D-Pa) and Gerry Connolly (D-Va), not content with targeting conservative groups, are now targeting the Treasury’s Inspector General J. Russell George and have filed a formal 22-page letter of complaint. They want to shoot the messenger since the victims of the IRS targeting have resisted their harassment.
The timing is curious. It follows ethics charges lodged by one of the IRS target victims, Catherine Englebrecht. Englebrecht, founder of True the Vote, has been repeatedly hounded by multiple government agencies. After her testimony, Cummings went on a defamation tour against her which prompted her to file ethics charges against him. This was made known only this week, just before he and his cohorts filed charges against George.
As an aside, Cummings is the man who protected and defended Attorney General Eric Holder for 18 months for his lack of “cooperation” in turning over only 7,000 of 80,000 subpoenaed documents to the Committee about Operation Fast and Furious.
Connolly and Cummings also pushed hard to cover up all damaging information exposed during the Benghazi hearings.
Connolly, as well as Cummings, have been brutal during the IRS hearings.
When Connolly wasn’t brutal, he attempted to minimize the damage with ridicule and sarcasm. He mocked the idea of an IRS “witch-hunt” while interviewing IRS official Sarah Hall Ingram.
Let’s get things out of the way,” Connolly said at the start of his congressional questioning. “Have you ever read The Crucible by Arthur Miller? What is it about?”
“Well, I’m from New England, so I’m familiar with the original story,” Ingram said. “The Salem witch trials.”
“You’re under oath; have you been consorting with the devil?” Connolly asked followed up by his asking her if she could fly or if she had been corrupting the youth of Salem.
Ridicule and sarcasm are effective techniques, often used by people in lieu of a cogent defense.
The Democrats are claiming George colluded with Darrell Issa’s staff to steer people to the conclusion that there was targeting.
They accuse George of being a partisan. George was appointed by George Bush but has worked with both parties, including being a page for the 1980 Democratic National Convention and a member of the Howard University College Democrats. He also worked on Republican Bob Dole’s campaign.
The Democrat accusers claim that George didn’t look hard enough for liberal groups that were targeted.
It seems no one can find the so-called liberal groups that were singled out in any serious way.
Last June, George testified that there were no liberal groups included in the targeting but by June 24 and June 26, Democrats came up with an IRS “Watch List” from January 2012 that flagged the words “Progressive” and “Occupy”. However, upon further review, of the twenty groups with the “progressives” identifier filed for tax-exempt status, only six were flagged for inclusion in the group of 298 applications identified as potential political cases.
Russell George forwarded a letter, addressed to Rep. Sander Levin, D-Mich., the ranking member on the House Ways and Means Committee, explaining, and which said in part:
“While we have multiple sources of information corroborating the use of Tea Party and other related criteria we described in our report, including employee interviews, e-mails, and other documents, we found no indication in any of these other materials that “Progressives” was a term used to refer cases for scrutiny for political campaign intervention. “
“Based on the information you flagged regarding the existence of a “Progressives” entry on BOLO lists, TIGTA performed additional research which determined that six tax-exempt applications filed between May 2010 and May 2012 having the words “progress” or “progressive” in their names were included in the 298 cases the IRS identified as potential political cases. We also determined that 14 tax-exempt applications filed between May 2010 and May 2012 using the words “progress” or “progressive” in their names were not referred for added scrutiny as potential political cases. In total, 30 percent of the organizations we identified with the words “progress” or “progressive” in their names were processed as potential political cases. In comparison, our audit found that 100 percent of the tax-exempt applications with Tea Party, Patriots, or 9/12 in their names were processed as potential political cases during the timeframe of our audit.”
Russell George has enjoyed an impeccable reputation which some congressional democrats hope to damage or destroy. Accounting Today listed Russell George as one of the “Top 100 People” in 2011 and 2012. “His IRS watchdog’s countless carefully analyzed reports and recommendations delve into every aspect of the tax agency’s operations — even to the point of recently analyzing the effectiveness of the other IRS watchdog, the Taxpayer Advocate.”
George is still reviewing the ethics complaint by Connolly, Cartwright, and Cummings and has not responded yet.
Cummings and Connolly have been abusive of targeting victims during the hearings on Capitol Hill. Cummings accused Catherine Englebrecht of racism with no evidence whatsoever in this week’s hearings.
Go to 01:18 to hear his unconscionable suggestions:
Watching the IRS hearings, I looked for any sign that Democrats had our back. Few did. As an American, I am very concerned that our elected representatives seem to only have their own welfare in mind when they make decisions. They are concerned about their next election, not you or I, but it’s worse than that. They are using the power of their office to hurt the people they are supposed to serve and they will lie and they will target anyone who gets in their way.
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