by Robert Maynard
Questions about Vermont’s lone Representative Peter Welch’s letters to the IRS Commissioner, and to President Obama, asking for closer scrutiny of non-profits provides a opportunity to take a closer look at what the real problem is. It looks like Representative Welch is not the only one who raised such concerns. A number of Senate Democrats have been raising concerns about the political activity of non-profits for a while now. 501c4s have been viewed as a particular concern. The real scandal here is not that such concerns were expressed, but that a legitimate issue was used as an excuse for the IRS to go after conservative groups.
The use of non-profits to drive a political agenda is a real concern and is something that True North Reports has been following for a while now. This is an approach that the political left has been using to push the argument for an expanded role of government with more taxpayer dollars going to the very non-profits that are being used to push the agenda. TNR has reported before that foundation support for liberal non-profits exceed that of conservative non-profits by a 10 to 1 margin.
Again, the real scandal here is not pointing out that non-profits are being used to drive a political agenda. The problem is that, despite the countless number of liberal non-profits engageed in such activity, the IRS chose to specifically target conservative groups. This is a chilling case of trying to silence a particular political point of view. According to the WCAX article, Representative Welch wants to get to the bottom of this: “Welch says at the minimum, someone should be fired over the IRS scandal and possibly prosecuted. He is not sure who is behind it, but says it’s important to uncover all the facts.” He might want to start by raising the question of whether this could have happened without White House knowledge. This is a question that is not just being raised by conservatives. Trey Hardin from ABC News was on with Doug McIntyre on 790 KABC and offered the following observation:
I will tell you this on the IRS front. I’ve worked in this town for over 20 years in the White House and on Capitol Hill and I can say with a very strong sense of certainty that there are people very close to this president that not only knew what the IRS were doing but authorized it. It simply just does not happen at an agency level like that without political advisers likely in the West Wing certainly connected to the president’s ongoing campaign organization.