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Did the New York Times Just Stumble Across an IRS Motive for Targeting the Tea Party?

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The New York Times editorial board may have just stumbled across an ulterior motive for the IRS targeting of the Tea Party.

In its latest liberal rant coming to the aid of the IRS – that poor defenseless government leviathan – it repeats the same tired leftist talking points about the root of all the IRS’s problems being that it doesn’t have enough money.

Yet in doing so, it may have just stumbled across a new motive behind the targeting, good old-fashioned revenge.

He’s what the New York Times calls the “real scandal”:

There is a scandal going on at the Internal Revenue Service, but it has nothing to do with Lois Lerner or her missing emails. . . .

No, the real scandal is what Republicans did to cripple the agency when virtually no one was looking. Since the broad Tea Party-driven spending cuts of 2010, the agency’s budget has been cut by 14 percent after inflation is considered, leading to sharply reduced staff, less enforcement of the tax laws and poor taxpayer service. (Emphasis added.)

So according to the New York Times, the targeting of the Tea Party, which the IRS admitted was wrong and for which it faux-apologized, is a direct result of “the broad Tea Party-driven spending cuts of 2010.”

The Tea Party forced cuts to the IRS budget, and the IRS retaliated by shutting down the Tea Party.  Is that it?

How revenge is any better than political retribution, I’m not sure.

Then again, maybe it’s not revenge; maybe it’s extortion.  As the NY Times concludes, if Congress will give the IRS more money then the IRS will agree to “do its job of collecting the money,” presumably instead of targeting conservatives.

Regardless as to whether it was revenge, retaliation, or extortion, the fact remains that the IRS targeting of conservative groups was wrong.  The Obama Administration and its political allies in the mainstream media protest too much.

Their persistent petulance and constantly changing excuses in the face of mounting, damning evidence belies their true intentions.  They we caught red-handed weaponizing the IRS against their political opponents.  They have franticly searched for a scapegoat (rogue low-level employees in Cincinnati, mismanagement, computer crashes, underfunding, Congress, etc.), but the truth has always stood in the way of their misdirection.

And it will continue to do so.  The American people demand accountability.  And if we at the ACLJ have anything to do with it (which we do through our lawsuit on behalf of 41 targeted groups from 22 states), we’ll see to it that they get it.

Matthew Clark is Associate Counsel for Government Affairs and Media Advocacy with the ACLJ. A lifelong citizen of the Commonwealth of Virginia, he lives with his wife and three boys in Northern Virginia. Follow Matthew Clark: @_MatthewClark.

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