The emails released by Judicial Watch
showing that the IRS targeting of conservative groups was based in Washington also show that former IRS official Lois Lerner and others were getting direction from President Barack Obama's campaign, says Judicial Watch Director Chris Farrell.
"It's very clear that she and the rest of the staff of the political operatives at the IRS are acting at the direction of people from the president's campaign," Farrell told J.D. Hayworth and John Bachman on "America's Forum" on Newsmax TV.
"There's a concerted effort to suppress the president's political opposition, and that doesn't just happen in a vacuum or happen out of thin air," he added.
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The documents obtained by Judicial Watch included emails to those conducting investigations into the conservative and tea party groups that were applying for nonprofit status at the IRS from Lerner, in which she listed which type of groups to "Be on the Lookout" for.
"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," Lerner wrote.
The Judicial Watch documents also included a series of letters between Democratic Sen. Carl Levin of Michigan and IRS officials in 2012, leading up to the presidential election, discussing how to put conservative groups through further scrutiny.
"Mr. Levin's got something to worry about," Farrell said. "His seven letters to the IRS at a minimum are improper, if not illegal. He has no business cajoling and bullying the IRS into pursuing his political opponents."
However, the Judicial Watch director did say that "there's no direct linkage to the White House," but that the documents go against Obama's claims that there is "not a smidgen" of evidence showing wrongdoing.
"I can tell you we have a boatload of evidence now showing direct coordination and targeting of the tea party from Washington, D.C., headquarters," Farrell said.
In an interview on "The Steve Malzberg Show" on Newsmax TV, Judicial Watch's senior attorney Ramona Cotca said obtaining the damning emails has been a struggle.
"Unfortunately, we keep having to file these lawsuits," Cocta said. "But yes, Lois Lerner knew about these and she took the Fifth and didn't want to testify that.
"It was actually Washington, D.C. that was directing," she told Malzberg. "Cincinnati and there are some other emails as well from California saying to forward an application from California over to D.C. for a D.C. office to review."
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