Darrell Issa to IRS Chief: Want to 'Amend' Your Testimony?

Wednesday, 02 Jul 2014 07:55 PM

By Cathy Burke

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House Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Darrell Issa on Wednesday asked IRS Commissioner John Koskinen if he wanted to "amend" testimony he gave the panel — sharply noting that it doesn't jibe with remarks by a lawyer for the woman at the center of the IRS' tea party targeting scandal.

In a letter to Koskinen, Issa alluded to a Politico interview in which former official Lois Lerner's attorney, William Taylor, appeared to toss Koskinen under the bus. The letter was posted by The Blaze.

"Recent public statements from [Taylor] . . . have raised new questions about Ms. Lerner's Federal Records Act compliance practices and the circumstances surrounding the loss of emails and destruction of her hard drive," Issa wrote, asking Koskinen if he wanted to "amend" his June 23 testimony before the panel.

In the testimony, Koskinen said Lerner printed out her emails as required under the Federal Records Act. Yet Taylor told Politico last week that Lerner didn't know she was supposed to print out official records.

"Lerner did not print out official records she may have sent over email because she didn't know she had to," Taylor told Politico.

"If somebody is supposed to keep archived copies, that's the IT department's or her staff's responsibility," Taylor said.

Issa wants Koskinen to get the story straight.

"On one hand, you testified to the committee that Ms. Lerner kept a printed archive of federal records from her email, thus leaving you unsure if she ever fell out of compliance with the Federal Records Act," Issa wrote the IRS commissioner.

"On the other hand, Ms. Lerner's attorney stated that she did not think she was required to maintain a printed archive and blamed Ms. Lerner's subordinates for any loss of records.

"[T]he committee would like to offer you the opportunity to amend your testimony that you have no idea 'whether anything that was lost was an official record or not' and acknowledge that Ms. Lerner did not follow policies necessary for Federal Records Act compliance that have obstructed the congressional investigation into the IRS' targeting."

Issa's letter follows dueling television interviews that each of the men gave on Sunday, Politico reported, with Issa saying Taylor had "outright lied" during the investigation and Taylor accusing Issa of using Lerner to play election-year politics.

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