Tag Archives: John Koskinen

IRS chief John Koskinen makes excuses

Still working for the Democratic Party: In House hearings today IRS chief John Koskinen claimed that he was misled and never ordered the destruction of evidence in direct defiance of Congressional orders.

At a hearing designed to lay the ground for his possible impeachment, Mr. Koskinen implied he was let down by his subordinates, who allowed hundreds of backup tapes to be destroyed, losing tens of thousands of emails from former senior executive Lois G. Lerner. It is the loss of those emails, even as they were under a subpoena issued by Congress, that has landed Mr. Koskinen in the hot seat, with conservative Republicans demanding he be ousted from office for his behavior.

Mr. Koskinen in 2014 testified that all of the information was being preserved, but now says that was faulty information and he, too, was misinformed. “I accept that it is up to you to judge my overall record, but I believe impeachment would be improper,” Mr. Koskinen told the House Judiciary Committee.

He flatly denied that he gave orders for the backup tapes to be deleted, saying he had actually issued orders that everything related to the tea party targeting be preserved. He said that message was received by everybody save for two workers on the graveyard shift at the West Virginia facility where the deletions happened. [emphasis mine]

Yup, and the dog ate my homework also. Note also that Koskinen has not punished anyone at the IRS for misleading him and not following his orders. It’s almost as if he is winking at them approvingly as he sheds crocodile tears before Congress.

Note also that this hearing is only happening because House conservatives forced the Republican leadership into holding it.

Republican leadership avoids vote on IRS head impeachment

More failure theater: The Congressional Republican leadership has worked out a deal that will avoid a vote on the impeachment of IRS head John Koskinen, thus protecting the Democrats from any embarrassing votes in favor of the IRS prior to the November elections.

The agreement makes it unlikely that any vote by the full House to impeach Koskinen will happen until after the November election, if at all. House Republican leadership had balked on moving forward on impeachment proceedings during an election season, arguing that an impeachment vote risked irritating voters. Others said Koskinen deserved a full House Judiciary Committee probe before embarking on the seldom-used impeachment process.

And the Republican leadership wonders why they are now stuck with outsider Donald Trump as their presidential candidate. The public sees their impotent and weak leadership, and wants something different.

Freedom caucus demands impeachment vote on IRS head

Good news: Despite the opposition of Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wisconsin), the conservative Freedom Caucus in the House is demanding a vote on the House floor on the impeachment of IRS head John Koskinen.

Two points: First, the vote is not guaranteed, as the motion put forth now will expire during the summer recess. The caucus will have to re-introduce it when Congress reconvenes in September, something they say they will do.

Second, Ryan’s resistance to having this vote does not speak well for him, considering the outrageous stonewalling by Koskinen in connection with IRS scandal, including lying to Congress and participating in the destruction of evidence that had been specifically requested by Congress. It also helps confirm the accusations of Ryan’s opponent in the August 9 Republican primary, Paul Nehlen, that Ryan is not the conservative he claims to be.

One month after it realized it needed them, IRS erased email backups

Working for the Democratic Party: One month after the IRS realized it had lost many of Lois Lerner emails demanded by a number of investigations looking into the tax agency’s harassment of conservatives, IRS employees erased the backup tapes for those very emails.

The lost emails were to and from Lois Lerner, who used to head the IRS division that processes applications for tax-exempt status. In June 2014, the IRS told Congress it had lost an unknown number of Lerner’s emails when her computer hard drive crashed in 2011.

The IRS had discovered that the emails were lost in February 2014. A total of 422 computer backup tapes were erased a month later, George says in his testimony. At the time, IRS officials said the emails could not be recovered.

[IRS Inspector General J. Russell] George says the workers were unaware of a 2013 directive from the agency’s chief technology officer to halt the destruction of email backup tapes. The IRS says it has produced 78,000 Lerner emails, many of which have been made public by congressional investigators. George says his investigators were able to recover more than 1,000 additional Lerner emails. However, he said, as many as 24,000 emails were destroyed when IRS employees erased the computer tapes.

And then there is this: “The investigators, however, concluded that employees erased the tapes by mistake, not as part of an attempt to destroy evidence.”

They really do think we are stupid. This scandal has been a major story for several years, one that every IRS employee has got to be aware of. In March 2014 it was an especially hot story, with IRS commissioner John Koskinen about to testify to Congress about it (which is when he revealed the loss of these emails).

For them to continue to routinely destroy backup tapes at that time, and for their bosses to do nothing to stop them, can only because they wanted those tapes destroyed.

IRS Inspector General finds another 6,400 lost Lois Lerner emails

Working for the Democratic Party: Emails by Lois Lerner that IRS head John Koskinen has sworn were lost forever and could never be recovered have miraculously been rediscovered by the IRS’s inspector general and will be turned over to Senate investigators.

Or as one of the leaders of one of the conservative groups that the IRS (and Lerner) had deliberately targeted for harassment noted, “I wouldn’t believe John Koskinen or Lois Lerner if they told me the sky was blue.”

IRS chief warns of bad service due to budget cuts

IRS Commissioner (and Democratic Party shill) John Koskinen has warned in an agency-wide email that the tax agency faces a short-term shutdown and increased bad taxpayer service because of Republican-led budget cuts.

“The effect of these cuts will hurt taxpayers and our tax system,” he wrote. He said the cuts could force the IRS to shut down operations for two days later this year, resulting in unpaid furloughs for employees and service cuts for taxpayers. But in the near-term, the commissioner said cuts in overtime and temporary staff hours could cause delays in refunds. “People who file paper tax returns could wait an extra week — or possibly longer — to see their refund,” he wrote, adding: “Taxpayers with errors or questions on their returns that require additional manual review will also face delays.”

Why am I reminded of the claims of federal agency heads everywhere just before sequestration, claiming doom and gloom should it take effect? None of their claims proved true. Sequestration did nothing to harm government operations and actually saved the taxpayers a load of money.

Koskinen is full of it. This email by him is only intended to pressure Congress to give him more money, so that his agency can continue to abuse anyone who might express opinions hostile to the Democratic Party.

More computer crashes and lost emails at the IRS.

Cover-up: In testimony at House hearings on Wednesday, IRS chief John Koskinen admitted that computer crashes continue at the IRS.

“Hard drive crashes continue as we speak,” Koskinen admitted at a House Oversight and Government Reform subcommittee hearing when asked if any computers had recently crashed under his watch. Koskinen admitted that destroying records would be an act “not consistent with the law,” but maintained that there’s no evidence that the IRS intentionally destroyed records. [emphasis mine]

The simple fact that the IRS proceeded with the destruction of Lois Lerner’s hard drive and Blackberry, even as the investigation was on-going, is direct evidence that the IRS did intentionally destroy records. They, and Koskinen, are breaking the law, and spitting in the face of Congress and the American people as they do it.

$4.4 billion for 2,000 IRS hard drive crashes.

After spending $4.4 billion on its computers during the Obama administration, the IRS still had over 2,000 hard drive crashes in 2014.

IRS commissioner John Koskinen used the 2,000 crashes as an argument that the crash of Lois Lerner’s hard drive was not that unusual, and that their aging equipment made backup difficult. To me, it suggests that the people at this agency are either gross incompetents, or even more corrupt than I thought.

Because you see, with that many crashes, the IRS made the one obvious decision anyone with any brains would immediately make in that situation: They canceled the contract with their email backup service.

Tonight’s testimony and questioning of IRS commissioner John Koskinen concerning the destruction of Lois Lerner’s emails in connection with the IRS’s harassment of opponents of Barack Obama and the Democratic Party..

Cover-up: Tonight’s testimony and questioning of IRS commissioner John Koskinen concerning the destruction of Lois Lerner’s emails in connection with the IRS’s harassment of opponents of Barack Obama and the Democratic Party..

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.

Be sure the watch all the videos at the link. If you do and you still believe John Koskinen is telling the truth and is not a political thug who is doing the bidding of the White House to cover-up its use of the IRS to harass its political opponents, then you are probably so naive you believe Nigerian emails.

More information about tonight’s hearing here.

To be fair, let’s watch a montage of the Democratic representatives and their statements during today’s House hearing of IRS commissioner John Koskinen.

To be fair, let’s watch a montage of the Democratic representatives and their statements during today’s House hearing of IRS commissioner John Koskinen.

Watch it, please. For those who are old enough to remember the Watergate hearings, you will be strongly reminded of the Republicans then defending Nixon. It was pitiful when the Republicans did it then, and it is pitiful when the Democrats do it now.

The IRS has admitted it wrongly harassed conservatives. It is also clearly participating in a cover-up. To make-believe these things didn’t happen and that the victim here is the IRS is beyond shameful.

The IRS Commissioner John Koskinen smirked as he insisted that “no apology is owed” by the agency for its actions.

One more post on today’s IRS House hearing: The IRS Commissioner John Koskinen smirked as he insisted that “no apology is owed” by the agency for its actions.

Watch the video. As I said earlier, the arrogance of the man is disgusting.

More video from IRS commissioner John Koskinen testimony today during House hearings.

More video from IRS commissioner John Koskinen’s testimony today during House hearings.

Koskinen is so full of crap I think I could fertilize half the farm fields in the state of Iowa with it. This response from Kevin Brady (R-Texas) sums it up quite cogently.

“The IRS denied for two years targeting of Americans based on their political beliefs. That wasn’t the truth. They said it was a few rogue agents in Cincinnati. That wasn’t the truth. You said you were targeting liberal organizations. That wasn’t the truth. Then you assured us you would provide us all the emails in May and that wasn’t the truth. And today, you are telling us out of thousands of IRS computers, the one that lost the emails was a person of interest in an ongoing congressional investigation. And that is not the truth either. This is the most corrupt and deceitful IRS in history.”

» Read more