Last Friday, the IRS came out and admitted to "inappropriately flagging" conservative political groups during the 2012 election to see if they were violating tax-exempt status.
While this was breaking news to the mainstream media, the only thing that was surprising to Glenn was the admission from the IRS. Glenn and TheBlaze had been reporting on the issue for over a year.
In a statement Glenn released on TheBlaze over the weekend, Glenn noted, "as early as February 14, 2012, TheBlaze’s Mike Opelka published a story titled: “Is Obama Using the IRS to Silence Opposition Voices?”
In it, Opelka detailed the emails TheBlaze has received from conservative groups “alerting us to the oppressive demands being sent to them from the IRS.” Among other things, the IRS apparently wanted hard copies of every social media post; the name, address, and corporate federal ID of members; and the time, location and content schedule of each event, including printouts of the text of every speech given."
This morning on radio, Glenn reminded listeners that, a year ago, when TheBlaze first reported on the issue, he was called a ' right-wing, crazy conspiracy theorist'.
Glenn also replayed audio from March of 2012 of IRS Commissioner Douglas Shulman answering a question addressing the accusation that the IRS was targeting right-wing groups. Shulman denied the claims, stating the IRS 'prides itself on being non-partisan'.
"Thanks for bringing this up. Because there's been a lot of press about this and a lot of moving information, so I appreciate the opportunity to clarify it. First let me start out by saying yes, I can give you assurances. As you know, we pride ourselves on being a nonpolitical, nonpartisan organization. I'm the only — me and our Chief Counsel are the only presidential appointees…"
"You want to check your calendar?" Glenn interjected during the clip.
"Documents now obtained by the Washington Post from a congressional aide with knowledge of the findings show that on June 29th, 2011, IRS staffers held a briefing with senior agency officials in which they described giving special attention to instances where statements in the case file criticized how the government ‑‑ hold it. Where statements in the case file criticize how the country is being run. Lerner oversees tax‑exempt groups for the agency raise objections and the agency revised its criteria a week later. But six months later the IRS applied a new political test to groups that applied for tax‑exempt status as social welfare groups. The document says that on January 15th, 2012 ‑‑ is that before or after this testimony?" Glenn asked.
"That's before," Pat responded.
Glenn continued, "January 15th, 2012, the agency decided to target, quote, political action type organizations involving in limiting expanded government educating on the Constitution and Bill of Rights."
Along with conservative, grass-roots, and Constitution-based groups being targeted, pro-Israel Jewish groups were also singled out.
"This is just what the Jewish groups were asked to file, when they were filing and saying, "We want to be a tax‑exempt status," they had to file out all these questions," Glenn said. "I'll give you some of the questions, but here are the ones to the Jewish groups: Does your Jewish group support the existence of the land of Israel?"
"Why do you have to know that at the IRS?" Glenn asked.
"What is the difference there?" Glenn asked. "Also, it demanded the Jewish organizations describe its religious belief system toward the land of Israel."
Think those are bad? Here's a sample at what some of the 9/12 & TEA Party groups were also dealing with. The San Fernando Valley Patriots received 12 pages, 35 questions — 80 different sub questions in total.
Here's a sample:
- Provide details regarding all of your activity on Facebook and Twitter.
- Provide details regarding all of your advertising you have conducted using social media outlets.
- Provide a list of all issues that are important to your organization.
- Indicate your position regarding each issue. If associated with any other IRC 501(c)(3), provide the name,
- The federal employee identification number and address of each organization. Describe the nature of all context with all other organizations.
- Candidate forms: Please provide details including the nature of the forums and the issues discussed.
- You attempt to influence the outcome of specific legislation, please answer the following: Provide copies of all communications, all pamphlets, all advertisements, and other material distributed by your organization regarding legislation.
- Provide details regarding your relationship with the TEA Party patriots and the Sacramento Patriot movement.
"It's impossible to do this," Glenn said.
Here's a question posed to Ohio Liberty, Kentucky 9/12, Waco TEA Party, Richmond TEA Party, Unite in Action, San Fernando Valley Patriots:
- Political affiliation of any organization that provided educational services to you.
- Any candidates for public office that happened to speak at any function they have ever had. Please provide written transcripts of those speeches.
- All activities with the news media providing articles, news transcripts, items aired. Provide the resume of every past and present director, officer, and employee.
…and that's just one small sample of what was being asked of these groups by the Internal Revenue Service.
Glenn went on to explain that the ACLJ is going to be litigating this case.
"And sue this government and they should. This is a violation of your civil rights," Glenn told listeners. "This is a Civil Rights Movement. As I have been saying for a while, this is a Civil Rights Movement, and if anybody in the press cares to show the slightest bit of interest, you're welcome to all of the copies of all of the letters that we had and posted in 2011."
"Now, I also, I could provide classes for you on what happened in Benghazi if you'd like to ‑‑ you'd like to pick up the Benghazi ball. If you'd like to understand what happened with Benghazi, I can help you on that as well, seeing that you are now reporting the things that we reported a week into Benghazi. And you had. Because I'm the our gang comedies of news compared to the worldwide global resources of ABC News you. So I know you had the same information. The question is why didn't you report it? CBS, the same with you. CNN, the same with you. Same for all of these news organizations: Where were you? We reported it. You didn't. Why?" Glenn asked.
"So I can give you a schooling on that. And if you'd like, I could also give you the schooling on the Muslim Brotherhood and its infiltration. I can show you again the documents that you have, that you verified and that many of your organizations have spiked after your top journalists went after the Libyan ‑‑ not the Libyan but the Saudi Arabian connection to Boston. You've spiked the story. So you already have it. Your top journalists in two of the networks did multiple filings on stories and they were spiked. So that's the next thing. I suggest you guys start coming clean."
It wasn't until Friday that the media really started to take these stories seriously — right about the moment that the White House called a private meeting with 15 journalists.
"They called 15 or 17 journalists in to the White House on Friday to have a private conference with them on Benghazi. And then everybody said, "Oh, this is a really important thing." So the White House is going to start throwing midlevel staffers and low‑level staffers underneath the bus. Do not accept it, America. Do not accept it. This goes all the way to the top. You ask yourself ‑‑ you ask yourself this one question: Why exactly did the president, why was he ‑‑ why was he completely invisible on a day that we had an ambassador killed? He made a political calculation to say, "I went to bed. I didn't know. The Pentagon ran the whole thing. Everybody ran it but me. They just told me, and I'm still, I'm still ‑‑ I don't know. I'm out of it." Why? Why, during an election, would a president want to look like he was completely disconnected? That was our first tip something was wrong. Because the president came out and said something, and we should find the tape, where I came out and said, "Look, something's wrong here." Why is the president making himself look not presidential?"
"Something's very wrong," Glenn said. "Now, if you're going to take a low‑level staffer when the President of the United States behaved in a way I've never seen a President behave before, you are still covering for this White House."