IRS Scandal: Pro-life Groups Were Targets

IRS Scandal

 

On any enemies list compiled by the Obama administration, no doubt pro-lifers would be near the top.  Illinois Review reveals today that pro-life groups were targeted by the IRS:

Were pro-life groups also a target of the staunchly pro-abortion Obama Administration?

Chicago’s Thomas More Society reported first dealing with IRS concerns from pro-life groups as early as 2009.

When the Coalition for Life of Iowa sought tax exemption status in 2009, the IRS sought details about the content of members’ prayers at a Planned Parenthood facility. They also demanded that the group refrain both from activities that could be construed as protesting or picketing by police, and to cease activities that could be seen as confrontational or harassing by abortion-seeking clients.

Thomas More Society said the IRS insisted that “every member of the board of directors of the Coalition sign a statement, under penalty of perjury, that they will not picket or protest or organize others to picket or protest outside of Planned Parenthood.” 

Soon after the unprecedented demands were made, the Chicago-based public interest law firm made the legal challenge on behalf of the Cedar Rapids, Iowa-based group. Shortly thereafter, the IRS backed off and the group was granted 501(c)3 status.

“The IRS must operate within the constraints of law, and it cannot condition the grant of tax exempt status on the forfeiture or surrender of First Amendment rights on the part of any non-profit group or individual American citizens,” Thomas More Society’s attorney Thomas Brejcha commented in a 2009 press release.

But again two years later, Thomas More Society issued a letter to the IRS on behalf of a group called Christian Voices for Life. The IRS made repeated requests for information about the viewpoint and content of the group’s communications, prayer vigils, and other activities, violating the group’s First Amendment rights.

Go here to read the rest.  Anyone who still believes that the IRS was doing this type of activity without explicit instructions from the Obama administration needs to have a crash course in reality.  This scandal looks worse with every passing hour.

34 Responses to IRS Scandal: Pro-life Groups Were Targets

  • Nothing will come of all this but more hand-wringing and more protestations. As the first black President, Obama is untouchable – at least untouchable by anyone except God, and unless God intervenes, this is going to get a lot worse. Christians will continue to be marginalized and vilified in the press, Government agencies will step up their campaigns of harassment and intimidation, law suits by atheists and pro-aborts and pro-sodomizers will increase, and then will come the brown shirts who will finally begin to imprison. It will end as it always does, with martyrdom. We Christians have been complacent for too long and St. Paul has some tough words to say about that in Romans 11:17-22:

    17 But if some of the branches were broken off, and you, a wild olive shoot, were grafted in their place to share the richness * of the olive tree, 18 do not boast over the branches. If you do boast, remember it is not you that support the root, but the root that supports you. 19 You will say, “Branches were broken off so that I might be grafted in.” 20* That is true. They were broken off because of their unbelief, but you stand fast only through faith. So do not become proud, but stand in awe. 21 For if God did not spare the natural branches, neither will he spare you. 22 Note then the kindness and the severity of God: severity toward those who have fallen, but God’s kindness to you, provided you continue in his kindness; otherwise you too will be cut off.

    —–

    God regularly prunes His olive tree.

  • Rubbish Paul. Nothing is a bigger waste of time than pessimism. Obama thus far has managed to lose the House for the Democrats, weaken the Democrats in the Senate, allowed the Republicans to take more governorships, 30 currently, than they have in decades and control more state legislatures, 27 currently, than they have since the time of Calvin Coolidge. Obama is busily transforming the Democrat party into a much weaker version of itself than it was when he was elected in 2008. Obama isn’t ten feet tall and I am heartily sick of people pretending that he is.

  • Seems to me like the system worked. The IRS tried to impose unlawful restrictions on the Iowa group, the Thomas More Center sued, the IRS backed off. As for the current scandal, so the IRS scrutinized extra hard Tea Party groups. So what? Did the IRS violate their rights in any way?

  • After watching Jay Carney try to spin these scandals, this song foes out to the Administration:

  • “As for the current scandal, so the IRS scrutinized extra hard Tea Party groups. So what? Did the IRS violate their rights in any way?”
    “The IRS tried to impose unlawful restrictions on the Iowa group,”
    That rather answers your question Harold. Attempting to impose unlawful restrictions is a violation of rights and citizens should not have to sue in order for government agencies not to play rough shod over their rights.

    Singling out groups for harassment because of their political beliefs is a violation of rights Harold. Releasing confidential information on groups by the IRS is not only a violation of rights, it is a crime, and the IRS has done that to conservative groups.

  • Donald, when I pray the Rosary tonight, I will make a specific intention that you be correct. I really hope what I wrote is rubbish. Nothing would make me happier at this point!

  • Judging from this comment you left last year on the National Catholic Register Harold, I suspect that you would bellow a different tune if the IRS were singling out Democrat groups for “special” treatment:

    “Posted by Harold Ullenberg on Thursday, Oct 25, 2012 11:42 AM (EDT):

    Ridiculous! Why do your Republicans fantasize about being persecuted?”

    Read more: http://www.ncregister.com/blog/tim-drake/the-myth-and-the-reality-of-ill-die-in-my-bed#ixzz2THzCRZlX

  • “Obama thus far has managed to lose the House for the Democrats, weaken the Democrats in the Senate, allowed the Republicans to take more governorships, 30 currently, than they have in decades and control more state legislatures, 27 currently, than they have since the time of Calvin Coolidge. Obama is busily transforming the Democrat party into a much weaker version of itself than it was when he was elected in 2008. Obama isn’t ten feet tall and I am heartily sick of people pretending that he is.”

    But since then. Obama not only got reelected when he should have lost resoundingly, he gained seats in both the House and the Senate. To get reelected with the unemployment rate as it was and with the economy in the shape it is in is practically unprecedented. You also have Marco Rubio, who is considered, not by me, but by many others, as the great conservative hope, making crawling in to bed with the worst elements of both parties on illegal immigration his signature issue.

    False optimism is an even bigger waste of time than pessimism, It isn’t that Obama is so tall it is that the GOP continues to act so small. So small, they lose even when they win.

    It is my hope that these latest scandals amounts to the political proctology that enables the republican establishment to pull its head out of its collective ass and wake up to the fact that the democrats view us as every bit the enemy that Islamo-nutjobs aren;t in their view and act accordingly.

  • Rubbish Greg. Obama won primarily because Republicans made the mistake of nominating Romney. Many of us were warning that he was the weakest candidate that the Republicans could put up. In a low turnout election Obama was able to turn out enough of his base to win, in spite of the fact that his vote total was down by three and a half million votes. This does not show Obama as strong but rather as a weak candidate in 2012 who beat an even weaker candidate in Romney. That is not a cause for pessimism but optimism. As for your everlasting standard rant against Republicans, you have a point but you run it into the ground because you fail to see that overall the trend is against the Democrats in spite of Republican misteps.

  • Rubbish Donald. Romney was a weak candidate yes, But he was the strongest one in line of pathetic candidates. This only illustrates the truth of my “rant” against the GOP. Let’s see, would Santorum have been a stronger candidate? Yeah, right! The only reason why he gained steam was that he was the last not-Romney standing. That he was the last hope after Bachmann, Gingrich, Cain, and Perry fizzled out proves my point.

    Like I said, Obama’s success is more the republican failure than anything else.

  • Perry would have been a much stronger candidate than Romney. Santorum would have done no worse than Romney. Even Gingrich would have had a hard time not at least equaling Romney’s vote total. Bachmann and Cain were never serious candidates. Romney’s problem was a deep alienation from the Republican base which allowed fairly weak candidates to compete against Romney fairly successfully in spite of being massively outspent. Romney lacked that advantage in the general election and it showed, along with his failure to turn out the base in the numbers that he needed. He barely surpassed McCain’s miserable totals. Republican woes in the Presidential field was caused by Romney’s money scaring off A-listers other than Perry. Perry’s poor physical condition caused bizarre performances in the debates and he was history. Even so, Romney struggled against two weak candidates like Gingrich and Santorum, who were vastly underfunded, because the Republican base did not want Romney.

  • To get reelected with the unemployment rate as it was and with the economy in the shape it is in is practically unprecedented.

    I think the salient metric is the direction the unemployment rate is moving.

  • Rubbish Pinky. (Just saving the next guy some time.) Romney won the nomination in the classic Republican way, by being not-terrifyingly-awful on a stage of people that the Founding Fathers, if they were around today, would have excluded by name from the Presidency.

  • The idea that Perry would have been a stronger candidate than Romney is pure non sense. Not only did Perry look like he was on drugs during the debates, he accused those who opposed in state tuition for children of illegals as “heartless”. We all know how that would have went over with the conservative base. He also endorsed David Dewhurst over Ted Cruz for Kay Bailey Hutchison’s senate seat. Need I remind you how wildly popular Cruz was and still is amongst the conservative base? And if, memory serves me correctly, it was Rick Perry who beat Ron Paul to the succession punch by at least a few years. Perry would have gotten eaten alive by Obama in general election.

    Pretty much the same for Gingrich. Again, Newt wasn’t too well liked by the conservative base for his political schizophrenia. One minute he is articulating conservative principles in a Reaganesque fashion and he is calling the Ryan Budget “right wing social engineering. And of all the things he could have gone after Romney for, he chose to demonize his Bain Capital record in Obama like fashion,

    The fact that the base looked to Bachmann nad Cain before they looked to Santorum is an indication that the base had more confidence in the formers than the latter.

    Alienation of the conservative base is the GOP leadership’s MO, which has beemn the basis of my “rant” against the GOP from the outset.

  • Rubbish. Because I wanted to say rubbish. :)

  • Perry has shown immense voter appeal in Texas, GOP voters do not get more conservative than Gop voters in Texas, and most members of the Republican base do not share your obsession with immigration. It is an important issue for them, but they are not going to stay home because a candidate deviates from the immigration policy they would wish. Certainly if this were not the case Perry would not be the longest serving Governor I believe in Texas history. In 2010 he captured 39% of the Hispanic vote, and if Republicans are to be competitive nationally they have to replicate his success. In regard to Cruz you have a point, but considering Dewhurst had been Perry’s Lieutenant Governor since 2003 I can see why he backed him. None of the points that you make in any way negate the fact that Perry would have been a superior candidate to Romney. Can you imagine Perry deep sixing an attack ad on Benghazi as Romney did? Perry would have gone full throated against Obama on Obamacare, something that Mitt “Romneycare” Romney was unable to do.

    In regard to Gingrich once again I can think of no state that Gingrich would have lost that Romney carried. I cannot imagine Gingrich allowing Candy Crowley to push him around as Mitt the Lionheart did.

    I cannot imagine Perry, Gingrich or Santorum being dumb enough to make the 47% comment, probably the remark that doomed Romney.

    Santorum demonstrated that he was a gifted, if undisciplined, candidate. He had no money and a reputation of being a loser after his dismal Senate race in 2006. That he came close to upsetting Romney demonstrated both his strengths as a candidate and Romney’s weakness.

  • “Can you imagine Perry deep sixing an attack ad on Benghazi as Romney did?”

    Yes.

    As far as my obsession with immigration. I don’t have an obsession with immigration. But much of the conservative base does consider that to be an important issue. And Perry’s comments as well as his other train wrecks would have done him in.

  • “Can you imagine Perry deep sixing an attack ad on Benghazi as Romney did?”

    “Yes.”

    On what basis? Throughout his career Perry has been an agressive take no prisoners campaigner, perhaps a tribute to the fact that he started out as a Democrat. I can’t imagine him pulling any punches against Obama.

  • “Rubbish. Because I wanted to say rubbish.”

    I have always liked the sound of the word Phillip! :)

  • By the way, if Perry was a stronger candidate than Romney, then why did he do so badly when he started out as the frontrunner? If Perry was such a trainwreck in the primaries he would have been an even bigger one in the general election.

  • I think the problem is that nomination procedures have produced a donnybrook so gruesome that the candidates willing to endure it tend to well adapted to the donnybrook but ill-adapted to anything else in political life. That is true in both parties.

  • His debate performance is a stunner and completely unlike his performance during the rest of his political career. However, as Mitt Romney amply demonstrated, one can perform well in a debate and still lose an election. I don’t think Perry would have had Romney’s over confidence or Romney’s misreliance on a campaign team that clearly did not know what the devil they were doing.

  • Seems to me like the system worked. The IRS tried to impose unlawful restrictions on the Iowa group, the Thomas More Center sued, the IRS backed off. As for the current scandal, so the IRS scrutinized extra hard Tea Party groups. So what? Did the IRS violate their rights in any way?

    If their procedures were selective, yes (and they have already admitted to asking for information outside of the usual protocols). By the way, this letter was sent from Washington to a tea party group in Albuquerque last month. Their application has been pending for two years.

    http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/348309/dear-albuquerque-tea-party-irs-washington#comments

  • Don, I can tell you something that didn’t happen before the debates. The candidates weren’t herded into a room with a hairstylist, a speechwriter, and a press agent and told that this is what they want to say, this is what they can’t say, these are the subjects that they can argue about, this is how to do it without looking foolish, this is what George Stephanopoulos wants to trick you into saying, et cetera. Go take a look at Obama, Edwards, and Hillary Clinton debating. They look like the Channel 9 News Team, working together to bring the news you need to know to this town that we love. Polish isn’t the only thing that candidates need, but a poor appearance from anyone on the stage hurts the whole party.

  • “Polish isn’t the only thing that candidates need, but a poor appearance from anyone on the stage hurts the whole party.”

    I am not sure that is true. The debates in 1980 for the Republicans were pretty chaotic and didn’t seem to hurt Reagan. As a matter of fact he had one of his finest moments initially in the campaign as a result of the chaos:

    In regard to the Democrats I always thought the silk pony was a lousy debater, Shrillary always came across as someone trying out in an off broadway production for the role of Lady Macbeth, and Obama usually seemed bored, which is his default mood I think.

  • Nothing strikes fear in the heart of an ultra conservative “posse loving” bleeding heart liberal “communist” farmer than an IRS certified letter delivered right to the old farm house door. I quite like the word “rubbish”.

  • The fact that Perry would’ve had a more “take-no-prisoners” attitude than Romney’s campaign doesn’t really mitigate his other flaws, same for the other guys.

    obviously Romney was seriously flawed but the “not conservative enough, not tough enough” viewpoint seems to be comparing him to some kind of ideal conservative Republican that did not exist in the 2012 campaign

    “In 2010 he captured 39% of the Hispanic vote, and if Republicans are to be competitive nationally they have to replicate his success”

    OK but I’m not sure how simply agreeing with the Democratic position on immigration does this. you could make the case that it’s “less bad” than if it’s rejected and the GOP is tarred as nativist or what have you. But if you’ve got two parties with the same positions people’re gonna vote for the one they agree with on other stuff.

  • OK but I’m not sure how simply agreeing with the Democratic position on immigration does this.

    That would be a valid critique were that Perry’s position, but at best what you’ve just said is a gross oversimplification.

    There is no point rehashing the 2012 primary. What’s done is done and it makes no sense to continuing to battle over something that was decided over a year ago. Enough.

  • Yeah, bad transition, I meant the Schumer-Rubio stuff, which so far as I can tell is not radically different from what’s been the Democratic position. Which doesn’t automatically make it wrong, but it is what it is.

  • “But since then. Obama not only got reelected when he should have lost resoundingly, he gained seats in both the House and the Senate. To get reelected with the unemployment rate as it was and with the economy in the shape it is in is practically unprecedented.”

    It’s worth mentioning that the Watergate hearings began exactly 40 years ago this week, six months after Nixon won reelection with 60% of the popular vote and 49 states. Granted, the MSM loathed Nixon and they love the “O”, but if the evidence points to him, they will have no choice but to do their job, whether they like it or not.

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