Tags: America's Forum | Barack Obama | IRS Scandal | Cleta Mitchell | Barack Obama | IRS | White House

Cleta Mitchell: Obama Set Tone of Lawlessness at IRS, WH

By    |   Tuesday, 02 December 2014 12:21 PM

The IRS scandal first came on the national radar in 2010 during a call between White House economic adviser Gene Sperling and reporters during which Sperling released "highly proprietary and confidential" information about Koch Industries that would have only been known by the IRS, Washington, D.C., lawyer Cleta Mitchell said Tuesday on "America’s Forum" on Newsmax TV.

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"A number of people began to inquire as to how he knew about this, how he knew what their tax structure was, and Cause of Action, which is a watchdog organization in Washington, has done a lot of Freedom of Information Act requests to the IRS and Treasury and many other agencies, not just the IRS, and sued the Department of Treasury and the IRS a couple of years ago because they could not get any answers to the FOIA requests," she explained. "A judge ruled against the IRS and Treasury just a couple of months ago and said no, the Treasury and IRS departments must answer the questions and must turn over the documents.

"What they were asking is for any taxpayer records that were shared with the White House, documentation about those and about those transmissions and the IRS and Treasury said no, no, no, that's protected, that's confidential. Now mind you, here's what they're saying. We can share it with the White House but it's confidential and proprietary so we are not required to turn it over under at FOIA request and the judge ruled against them."

In a letter to Cause of Action last week, the Justice Department asked for extra time to compile the documents, saying there were more than 2,500 pages of communication between the IRS and the White House and the additional time was needed to redact any proprietary information, Mitchell said.

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"So that's what this is all about and we'll see what they come up with," she said. "They asked until Dec. 15 to turn all that over. Let's see what they do."

Mitchell said she currently has two FOIA appeals pending with the IRS as well as Freedom of Information Act requests.

"First of all, they refuse to answer within 30 days, which the law requires them to do, and then if they finally do, if you ask them again, then they may say we don't have anything," she said. "Then if you sue them, you find out, oh, my gosh, they have thousands of pages of documents after they said they didn't have anything. And then in the case of one of my cases we sued them, and this is the same thing that's happening here. They provide redacted or completely blank pages."

Whether or not President Barack Obama was directly involved in the IRS scandal is irrelevant, according to Mitchell.

"The buck stops at his desk whether he likes it or not," Mitchell said. "It's his administration, his attorney general, his chief counsel at the IRS, his IRS commissioner, his treasury secretary and go down the list. It's his White House general counsel and his Valerie Jarrett. I don't care whether he's sitting there reading those things. The fact of the matter is he's appointed a lot of people and he is the one who sets the tone of lawlessness, disregard of constitutional structure, framework and constitutional rights of the American people.

"He's responsible. I guarantee you there are people at the White House who knew what was going on. In 2010, the president traveled around the country and demanded that the IRS and others do something to silence conservative groups because they did not like the criticism of Obamacare and the efforts that the grassroots citizens had made when they rose up. His goal was to shut them up and sit them down. He did it and did it overtly, through other people and he was not very subtle about it."

Major news outlets such as ABC, NBC and CBS are akin to "state-owned media who might as well be in Venezuela," Mitchell charged, saying that the liberal media has given Obama "a complete pass on all of his violations of constitutional rights, including the violation of constitutional rights of reporters and journalists."

After Watergate, she added, Congress passed laws, which have subsequently been strengthened, prohibiting the disclosure of confidential taxpayer information to anyone outside the IRS, including the White House.

"We have a serious constitutional crisis, which is being totally disregarded by the state owned media," she said. "Can you imagine if George W. Bush and it was revealed that the IRS had 2,500 written communications with people in the White House over taxpayer information?"

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The IRS scandal first came on the national radar during a call between a White House adviser and reporters during which Sperling released "highly proprietary and confidential" information that would have only been known by the IRS, lawyer Cleta Mitchell said Tuesday.
Cleta Mitchell, Barack Obama, IRS, White House
Tuesday, 02 December 2014 12:21 PM
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