10 Updates

House Finds Lerner, Central Figure In Tax Exempt Scandal, In Contempt Of Congress

May 7 2014, 8:15pm CDT | by

Lois Lerner, the former Director of Tax Exempt Organizations (EO) at the Internal Revenue Service, held a position with IRS for twelve years. She will, however, likely be remembered most for a...

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12 weeks ago

House Finds Lerner, Central Figure In Tax Exempt Scandal, In Contempt Of Congress

May 7 2014, 8:15pm CDT | by

Lois Lerner, the former Director of Tax Exempt Organizations (EO) at the Internal Revenue Service, held a position with IRS for twelve years. She will, however, likely be remembered most for a speech that took just a few minutes. On May 22, 2013, Lerner was asked to testify before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform. She refused to testify, instead offering a statement, explaining: (downloads as a pdf):

I have not done anything wrong. I have not broken any laws. I have not violated any IRS rules or regulations, and I have not provided false information to this or any other congressional committee.

And while I would very much like to answer the Committee’s questions today, I’ve been advised by my counsel to assert my constitutional right not to testify or answer questions related to the subject matter of this hearing. After very careful consideration, I have decided to follow my counsel’s advice and not testify or answer any of the questions today.

Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA), Chair of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, cried foul, asserting that Lerner’s statement was the equivalent of a waiver of her Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination. Others weren’t so sure.

Nonetheless, the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee announced last month – nearly a year after Lerner’s appearance – that it would pursue contempt charges. Two days later, the Committee voted along party lines to proceed with contempt charges.

Procedurally, the next step was to send the resolution to the full House of Representatives for approval. The House considered the resolution, H. Res. 574 just after 4:00 p.m. today (Wednesday, May 7). The resolution read:

Recommending that the House of Representatives find Lois G. Lerner, former Director, Exempt Organizations, Internal Revenue Service, in contempt of Congress for refusal to comply with a subpoena duly issued by the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.

The House debated the resolution for nearly an hour before Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-OH) postponed the proceedings.

Just about an hour later, the measure was revisited as “unfinished business.” This time, after a limited debate, the measure passed. The vote was 231 Yeas to 187 Nays. Of the votes, 225 of the Yeas were from Republicans; all of the Nays were from Democrats. Thirteen Representatives did not vote.

What comes next? The matter will now be referred to the U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia. What happens from there is anyone’s guess: the U.S. Attorney’s Office hasn’t pursued criminal contempt charges since 1983 when the head of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Anne Gorsuch Buford, refused to turn over documents which had been requested by Congress.

If convicted, Lerner could face jail time and a fine of up to $100,000. Most believe that won’t happen. In particular, Lerner’s attorney, William Taylor III, is convinced Lerner won’t be convicted, saying, “There is not a court in this country that will hold Ms. Lerner in contempt of Congress.” Taylor has the numbers on his side: no American has been successfully prosecuted for invoking Fifth Amendment rights before Congress.

Lerner retired from the IRS last September, just a few months after making the tax organization scandal public during a disastrous appearance at an American Bar Association conference.

Want more taxgirl goodness? Pick your poison: receive posts by email, follow me on twitter (@taxgirl), hang out with me on Facebook or check out my YouTube channel. If you want to keep an eye on documents I’ve posted, check out my profile on Scribd. And finally, you can subscribe to my podcast on the site or via iTunes (it’s free).

 
Update
10

7 weeks ago

RM47mil KWSG contributions still unclaimed

Jun 9 2014 7:54am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR: About RM47 million of contributions in the Teachers Provident Fund (KWSG) still remain unclaimed, the Dewan Rak ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
9

7 weeks ago

Gold shop lost almost RM1mil

Jun 9 2014 3:50am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

KANGAR: A gold shop owner lost almost RM1 million after after the safe on in his shop was ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
8

7 weeks ago

Motion to debate MAS losses in Dewan Rakyat rejected

Jun 9 2014 3:39am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR: AN emergency motion to debate the losses incurred by Malaysia Airlines last year, amounting to RM1.2 billion was rejec ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
7

7 weeks ago

MH370 Tragedy: Hisham: RM27.6 mil spent on 1st phase of SAR

Jun 9 2014 2:11am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia spent some RM27.6 million in its first phase of the search operations for missing Malaysia Airline flight MH370, said Acting Transport Minister, Datuk Seri Hishammuddin ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
6

7 weeks ago

9.1m litres of diesel seized in a month

Jun 8 2014 1:11am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

PUTRAJAYA: The Domestic Trade, Cooperatives, and Consumerism ministry has seized some 9.1 million litres of diesel and property worth RM58 million since mounting ‘Operasi Diesel Selatan’ ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
5

7 weeks ago

Girl, 9, awarded RM2.78m compensation for medical negligence

Jun 6 2014 4:56am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR: A nine-year-old girl who suffered brain damage during her birth at a government hospital was awarded over RM2.78 million in com ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
4

7 weeks ago

Malaysia's total trade in April up 12pc

Jun 5 2014 11:52pm CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia's total trade in April 2014 rose by 12 per cent from a year ago to RM123.86 billion due to growing trading activities, International Trade and Industry Minister Da ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
3

7 weeks ago

Works Ministry to spend RM20m for upgrading works at 50 accident black spots

Jun 4 2014 11:35pm CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

JOHOR BARU: The Works Ministry will implement upgrading works at 50 accident prone locations in the country that have been identified this year involvin ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
2

7 weeks ago

Najib launches loan scheme for Ramadan traders

Jun 4 2014 10:24pm CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

PUTRAJAYA: Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak today launches RM45 million Ramada ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 
Update
1

8 weeks ago

Residents bring up objection against Kidex to Suhakam

Jun 4 2014 4:49am CDT | Source: Business Times Malaysia

PETALING JAYA: A group of 20 Petaling Jaya residents held a meeting with the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (Suhakam) over their objection against the proposed RM2.2 billion Kinrara Daman ...
Source: Business Times Malaysia   Full article at: Business Times Malaysia
 

 

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