Holder: DoJ wrong to apologize to tea party groups for IRS targeting
"Never say you're sorry. It's a sign of weakness," is the number one rule of NCIS main character Leroy Jethro Gibbs. Former Attorney General Eric Holder appears have taken that rule to heart.
Holder said yesterday that apologizing to tea party groups for being targeted by the IRS for their political beliefs was "unnecessary, unfounded and inconsistent" with the responsibilities of someone who wants to lead the Justice Department.
He’d ordered a criminal probe into the IRS’s handling of tea party applications after the 2013 revelation by an inspector general that the tax agency had subjected conservative groups to intrusive and inappropriate scrutiny when they applied for nonprofit status.
That probe eventually cleared the IRS, saying that while there was bungling, there was no ill intent. the probe specifically cleared former IRS senior executive Lois G. Lerner, saying rather than a problem, she was actually a hero, reporting bad practices when she spotted them.
The Justice Department reversed that finding, though, in settlements reached with tea party groups over the last year that singled Ms. Lerner out as having approved of the intrusive behavior and yet hidden the practices from her supervisors in Washington.
Mr. Holder also said Wednesday said that while he wouldn’t criticize the process used to pardon former Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, President Trump’s decision to do so was a “misuse” of the power.
Two federal judges specifically accused the IRS of targeting conservative groups based on their ideology. If that doesn't warrant an apology from government, what does?
Holder's "investigation" of the IRS for criminal wrongdoing was hampered by the loss of tens of thousands of emails and other documents that were "inadvertently" destroyed by the agency. It was a whitewash from start to finish, even making Lois Lerner, the IRS official most responsible for the targeting, something of a hero. Lerner had reason to believe that the targeting scandal was about to go public when she announced at a luncheon meeting that the IRS had accidentally targeted hundreds of conservative groups for special screening.
And we didn't hear any objections from Holder when Obama pardoned convicted Puerto Rican terrorist Oscar Lopez Rivera. Sheriff Joe never killed anybody. Rivera did.
The FALN claimed responsibility for more than 120 bombings between 1974 and 1983 in a wave of senseless destruction that killed six and injured dozens. In 1981, a federal court in Chicago sentenced Lopez Rivera, then 37, to 55 years for seditious conspiracy, armed robbery, interstate transportation of firearms and conspiracy to transport explosives with intent to destroy government property.
Obama also pardoned convicted traitor Chelsea Manning whose actions in giving massive amounts of secret documents to Wikileaks cost the lives of several people.
Next to those two characters, Sheriff Joe is a saint.
But Holder's insistence that apologizing to tea party groups was wrong shows us why so many scandals during the Obama era were whitewashed, or swept under the rug.