Tea partiers suing the IRS for allegedly targeting them as political enemies are the country's best hope for reining in a powerful government agency that has turned against ordinary citizens, the lawyer behind the class-action lawsuit told Newsmax TV
"We can try to count on congressional hearings and politicians, but we know that they never make a difference," Mark Meckler, president of Citizens for Self-Governance and a founder of Tea Party Patriots, told "MidPoint" host Ed Berliner. "It's up to us."
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Meckler discussed the status of the pioneering lawsuit — which a federal judge last month refused to dismiss
— and a culture of contempt for conservative Americans that he said is on display in e-mails uncovered by congressional investigators.
written by Lois Lerner — an IRS staffer at the center of the scandal over the targeting of tea party groups — referred to Republicans as "crazies" and "a--holes."
Meckler said IRS animosity is almost to be expected toward conservatives who seek tax-exempt status for their fundraising and activities.
"In a way it's natural," he said. "If you look at the slice of the American public that they're attacking — specifically the tea parties and liberty-oriented groups, small-government groups — these groups are inherently the enemy of large government."
But Meckler said that under President Barack Obama, "the federal government has now been weaponized against citizens that criticize it. … It's actually a government against the people."
Meckler said the people hurt by the IRS's ideological targeting are not deep-pocketed or well-connected, but "people who belong to or formed very small local organizations.
He said his lead plaintiff, NorCal Tea Party Patriots, "is headed by a couple in their late 60s, a retired couple, who are doing this on their own dime. They've also been audited personally. So they're the small folks that are being attacked by the IRS for their political views."
Meckler went on to describe what being "targeted" and "attacked" actually meant.
He said NorCal's petition for nonprofit status was met with "literally hundreds of questions … outrageous things like: name every speaker that's ever spoken at one of your events; provide us with a copy of everything that's ever been given out at one of your events; provide us with a copy of all reading materials suggested at your events.
"We had to give them literally everything; it was bankers' boxes full of materials," said Meckler.
Because NorCal also gave out stuffed toy bears — red, white, and blue — at one gathering, "We were required to send one of those teddy bears to the IRS, which I'm sure they're enjoying today," said Meckler.
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