On Monday, The Daily Signal reported that Federal District Court Judge Susan Dlott granted a motion to compel and ordered the IRS to produce the names of the 298 targeted organizations identified by the IRS for the Treasury Inspector General. Last week U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia, Ronald Machen disclosed the Justice Department‘s decision not to charge Lois Lerner with of Congress. This latest decision at least allows the probe of wrong doing by the Internal Revenue Service to continue.
The article reports:
…the plaintiffs have been trying through the discovery process to identify all of the conservative organizations unfairly targeted by the IRS so that they can seek class certification. If they can convince Judge Dlott to certify a class, then the lawsuit would expand from the ten original plaintiffs to all of the organizations on Lois Lerner’s hit list. This would greatly expand the risks to, and potential liability of, the government.
But the IRS, in a fitting bit of irony, refused to turn over the names of the organizations whose applications were mishandled, claiming that would violate the confidentiality requirements of Section 6103.
On April 1, in what must have seemed a cruel April Fool’s joke to the Justice Department lawyers handling the case, Judge Dlott denied a protective order sought by Justice Department to prevent the IRS from being forced to turn over this information. She pointed out that Section 6103 has an exemption for tax information “directly related to an issue in” a judicial proceeding. Since the identity of all of the targeted organizations “is directly related to the issue of class certification in this federal court proceeding,” she granted the plaintiffs’ motion to compel.
According to the article, the IRS will be forced to turn over:
- All charts, lists, spreadsheets or indexes of groups that had their Applications for Tax Exemption selected or flagged by the IRS for heightened review based on an infamous BOLO (Be On the Look Out) edict issued by IRS officials;
- The document listing the 298 organizations that the IRS sent the Inspector General on June 11, 2012; and
- The document titled “Advocacy Case Tracking Sheet” that the IRS sent the Inspector General on the same date.
There is little doubt that the Obama Administration was using the IRS to suppress free speech. Hopefully those at the root of this action will be identified and charged with the appropriate crimes.