Darrell Issa Gets Pwned — Elijah Cummings Keeps His Word
Last week we took a look at just how big a lying liar Darrell Issa (R – Liartown) is on this whole IRS scandal! thing. At that time we noted that Issa had promised on national television to release the full transcripts — not just cherry-picked excerpts of under-whelming “proof” — but had thus far failed to do so. In response, the ranking Dem on the committee, Elijah Cummings (D – Badassville), went on the same national television program and said that if Issa didn’t release the transcripts within the week, we would do so himself. Issa didn’t like that one bit and said it would now be “reckless” to release the full transcripts which he himself had already promised to release. (With me so far?)
Well, suffice it to say that as of Monday, Issa still had not released those transcripts, nor had he responded to Cummings request to clarify what or how the transcripts’ release could actually damage the investigation. So today, Cummings followed through.
Cummings released the full transcript today in two parts, making it available to a select group of reporters, with redactions of names of individuals, and accompanied it with a letter to Issa explaining his decision, in which Cummings concludes that the transcript “debunks conspiracy theories about how the IRS first started reviewing these cases.”
This comes after Cummings had previously insisted Issa release the full transcript himself, arguing it would show that the Republican chairman’s claims of White House involvement are false, and that Issa’s own selective release of testimony was misleading the public. Issa refused, insisting that releasing full transcripts would damage the investigation. Cummings then asked Issa to detail what specifically in the transcript would do this, and demanded an answer by yesterday. According to Cummings’ letter, Issa has yet to reply — hence the decision to go forward with the release today. [Greg Sargent – WaPo]
At any rate, you can probably guess what the transcripts show. As you probably already knew, Issa’s claim that the “scandal” started in Washington is poppycock. Wishful thinking, if I’m being generous. A blatant attempt to lie and mislead the public if I’m being frank.
In the testimony, the screening manager says that he first became aware of the initial Tea Party application when an “agent who worked for me” asked for “guidance concerning a case for him.” The manager testified that in this case he agreed with the agent that “there was not enough information” to figure out whether to grant the group tax exempt status.
“I told him at that point in time I agreed with his thinking,” the manager testified, adding that he informed the agent that he would “elevate that issue to my area manager.”
“This was the first case that came in that was brought to my attention,” the manager continued.
The manager further testified that the Tea Party groups were deliberately grouped together so that they would receive consistent treatment. “There was a lot of concerns about making sure that any cases that had, you know, similar-type activities or items included, that they would be worked by the same agent or same group,” the manager testified.
In the testimony, the screening manager also flatly stated he had no reason to believe there was White House involvement. [Greg Sargent – WaPo]
You should probably just go give Greg Sargent’s report a read if you’re interested in more details. Me? I’m just looking forward to the next act in Darrell Issa’s Circus Of Fail™.