Update III: Lois Lerner asserted her Fifth Amendment constitutional rights against self incrimination today. However, Lerner also asserted her innocence as well as authenticated a document. Did she waive her Fifth Amendment privilege by doing so?
CNBC and Weasel Zippers think Lois Lerner Pleading The Fifth Is Worst Possible Outcome For The White House… Yes indeedy. The more legal hubbub over the waiver question and the more attention to Lerner and the Fifth the more the public will hear what Big Media/Obama work so hard to suppress.
“First they came for the Second Amendment. Second they came for the First Amendment. Now they plead the Fifth Amendment. #Lerner #IRS”
Update II: Scandals are everywhere in the Barack Obama Mud House if you are willing to open your eyes and see the evidence right before you. Today we have a trifecta of fun – Open thread, live video: Oversight hearing into IRS non-scandal featuring official taking the Fifth. It’s not a fifth of Scotch, it’s the Fifth Amendment we’re witnessing here. It’s Chicago on the Potomac.
Update: Many scandals in one quick video:
CHILD#1: In regards to Benghazi, what did you know and when did you know it?
CHILD#2: Mitch McConnell says you govern my intimidation. Is that true?
CHILD#3: Isn’t it unconstitutional to secretly obtain phone records of AP reporters?
CHILD#4: Are Eric Holder’s days numbered?
CHILD#5: Who inside hatched the plan to target conservatives?
And Krauthammer sings “Not Fade Away”:
On television we are watching round the clock coverage of the tornado disaster in Oklahoma. We wish Oklahoma and its wonderful Obama-rejecting citizens well in these hours of post-disaster search and rescue.
We wish Oklahoma well and we do not begrudge the attention provided to the natural, weather induced, disaster. Still, for those of us happy at last to see some scrutiny of the Barack Obama Mud House there is some concern. The concern is that this natural disaster will cover-up the unnatural disaster which is Barack Obama and his tenure in national office.
Some might wonder, “Are the Barack Obama scandals already fading?”
In our previous article we stated that our test for Big Media is how clear Big Media sees and how clearly Big Media communicates to the American public that “All the scandals erupting now have one common theme and that is the reelection of Barack Obama. Every recent crime, “lapse of judgment”, “ethically questionable action” committed has been done to reelect Barack Obama.”
Some reporters such as Lisa Myers have inched perilously close, like a ballerina on a high wire, to passing our test. But that was before the winds of Oklahoma blew away Barack Obama scandal coverage from the front pages of Big Media. What has happened in Big Media since Oklahoma’s disaster? Is it already over? Is flim-flam man Barack Obama once again one step ahead of the sheriff?
Consider the latest column from one of the ugliest and persistent Barack Obama defender priests – Eugene Robinson:
“Obama administration mistakes journalism for espionage
The Obama administration has no business rummaging through journalists’ phone records, perusing their e-mails and tracking their movements in an attempt to keep them from gathering news. This heavy-handed business isn’t chilling, it’s just plain cold.
It also may well be unconstitutional. In my reading, the First Amendment prohibition against “abridging the freedom . . . of the press” should rule out secretly obtaining two months’ worth of the personal and professional phone records of Associated Press reporters and editors, including calls to and from the main AP phone number at the House press gallery in the Capitol. Yet this is what the Justice Department did.
The unwarranted snooping, which was revealed last week, would be troubling enough if it were an isolated incident. But it is part of a pattern that threatens to redefine investigative reporting as criminal behavior.
The Post reported Monday that the Justice Department secretly obtained phone and e-mail records for Fox News reporter James Rosen, and that the FBI even tracked his movements in and out of the main State Department building. Rosen’s only apparent transgression? Doing what reporters are supposed to do, which is to dig out the news.
In both instances, prosecutors were trying to build criminal cases under the 1917 Espionage Act against federal employees suspected of leaking classified information. Before President Obama took office, the Espionage Act had been used to prosecute leakers a grand total of three times, including the 1971 case of Daniel Ellsberg and the Pentagon Papers. Obama’s Justice Department has used the act six times. And counting.”
Obama lovin’ Robinson recognizes that the real aim of these acts is intimidation. “Every investigative reporter, however, has been put on notice.” Eugene Robinson is loathe to write even a teeny-weeney bad word about his darling Barack, but even Eugene is chillin’ on B.O.
Eugene Robinson writing something honest might be a sign of the Apocalypse but soon Robinson will be back on the Obama protection beat. One column does not dispute the possibility that the Barack Obama scandals are fading. Does it? Here we go: IRS official Lois Lerner to plead the Fifth at congressional hearing tomorrow
“Hey, remember when Steve Miller insisted there’s nothing illegal about the IRS targeting a particular political faction for extra scrutiny? He was wrong, potentially: There are civil-rights laws in play as well as the Hatch Act, plus some of the IRS’s own regulations for employee conduct. Lois Lerner and her lawyer know the score:
Lois Lerner is relying on the constitutional protections Barack Obama has been systematically destroying. Lerner wants to be excused from testifying before the House Oversight and Reform Committee tomorrow but Chairman Issa subpoenaed her and is demanding her compliance and appearance.
We might be deluded but it seems to us that this will not help fade the scandals away. Is there another indicator of potential “scandal” progress? Journalists notice “shifting” White House account of IRS scandal. Bloomberg News is watching and reporting:
“Carney said Ruemmler was informed by the Treasury Department’s General Counsel’s office April 24 that the Inspector General for Tax Administration was completing a report that found that IRS employees improperly scrutinized political organizations seeking tax exempt status by searching their applications for words including “Tea Party” and “patriot.”
The previous week, on April 16, Ruemmler had learned more generally that there were a number of Inspector General reports being finalized and an IRS investigation was among those investigations, Carney said.
Carney’s comments today are at odds with what he told reporters last week, when he said the White House counsel “only found out about the review being conducted and coming to conclusion by the inspector general.”
“The White House on Monday once again added to the list of people who knew about the IRS investigation into its targeting of conservative groups — saying White House chief of staff Denis McDonough had been informed about a month ago.
Press secretary Jay Carney said again that no one had told President Barack Obama ahead of the first news reports: not his top aide McDonough, nor his chief counsel Kathy Ruemmler, nor anyone from the Treasury Department.
Monday’s revelation amounts to the fifth iteration of the Obama administration’s account of events, after initially saying that the White House had first learned of the controversy from the press.
Republicans said they were on the lookout for the next installment in the White House’s ever-shifting narrative.“
Notorious fishwife Howard Fineman might be the next ballerina on the highwire because he is connecting the dots in a way we applaud:
“It’s been only a week since the president told the world that he had learned about the “outrageous” actions of the IRS’ Cincinnati office from “news reports” on May 10. We now know that those reports stemmed from a disclosure the administration had planned and that, in fact, “senior officials” in the White House knew the essence of a damning inspector general’s report on the matter as early as April 24. [snip]
Last Tuesday, I asked White House press secretary Jay Carney about a passing reference he had made the day before in his briefing: that the White House Counsel’s Office had been informed about the impending report “several weeks ago.”
How did that square, I wanted to know, with the president’s own statement that he hadn’t learned about the matter until May 10? And what did the counsel’s office learn in April? Weren’t those explosive matters worth being passed on to higher-ups? [snip]
With two winning presidential campaigns built on successful grassroots fundraising, with a former White House counsel (in 2010-11) who is one of the Democrats’ leading experts on campaign law (Bob Bauer), with former top campaign officials having been ensconced as staffers in the White House (David Axelrod, who left for the reelection campaign in early 2011, and Dan Pfeiffer among others), it’s hard to imagine that the Obama inner circle was oblivious to the issue of what the IRS was doing in Cincinnati.
That may well be true. Maybe they didn’t care one whit what the IG was going to say. But they sure haven’t been behaving that way in the last week.“
Shorter Fineman: something stinks.
A lot stinks. There are a lot of scandals still not getting the coverage they deserve. But thanks to Carney the Clown even the under “appreciated” scandals are getting some of the penumbral light. Carney: Asking about Sebelius fundraising for ObamaCare a lot like being a birther, or something:
“You know, a White House that just got exposed for spying on journalists probably should be doing some bridge-rebuilding, especially for an administration who needs a friendly media as much as this one does. What’s the worst possible way to get back in the media’s good graces? Accusing them of being conspiracy nuts for asking about Kathleen Sebelius’ fundraising for ObamaCare, starting with CBS’ Major Garrett, who just got done fronting the Benghazi e-mail defense demolished by Glenn Kessler today.”
Yeah, that’s the ticket. That’s how not to draw attention from the Oklahoma disaster.
Benghazi is not going away either. The recent lies by Barack Obama defenders have been debunked. Hillary Clinton will eventually be asked to testify once again and under oath. News that the Benghazi killers have been identified but not arrested due to lack of evidence is as stupefying as a Harry Potter spell. There will be new whistle blowers and new questions that will require months of investigation. Benghazi is not fading away.
For the next few days or perhaps into Memorial Day weekend Oklahoma will grab the nation’s attention and that is entirely proper. But on May 31st, it will be a real Memorial Day of Barack Obama scandals. Why is May 31st a date that will live in scandal history? Senate Finance Committee issues request for detailed information on IRS targeting scandal by May 31st.
It’s a Senate hearing, not a Republican House hearing, which will be chaired by Max Baucus. Read the letter sent by the Finance Committee to the IRS (pdf format) and you will see what amounts to an proctologist’s exam:
“1. Provide a copy of any and all questions, questionnaires and information requests used by the IRS to attempt to elicit additional information from 501(c)(3)-(6) applicants from February 1, 2010 to the present regarding their donor lists, volunteer lists, financial support for, and relationships with, political candidates, and any and all other similar information. [snip]
4. How many applications for each tax-exempt status, 501(c) (3)-(6), were filed and processed each year from FY 2005 through the present? In addition, provide the number of people in the Determinations Unit tasked with handling these applications during each fiscal year. [snip]
29. Provide copies of all documents, between any IRS employee and anyone else, including, but not limited to, individuals outside of the IRS, that were generated as a consequence of, or relate to, the letters sent by members of the Congress to the IRS since 2012 regarding the issue of inappropriately targeting organizations seeking 501 (c) (4) status for heightened scrutiny. [snip]
39. Provide documents relating to communications between any and all IRS employees and any and all White House employees including, but not limited to, the President, regarding the targeting of organizations seeking 501 (c)(3), (4), (5), or (6) tax-exempt status for full development or heightened scrutiny based on the existence of certain words or phrases in their applications, from February 2010 to the present. This includes any documents relating to communications received by any IRS employee from the White House or Treasury, whether or not the IRS employee was simply the recipient of such a communication from either the White House or Treasury.”
Still think these scandals are fading away?