A new poll from Gallup poll indicates that establishment RINO leaders, Speaker of the House John Boehner and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, are facing a growing problem of bipartisan discontent among Americans, showing that their “go along to get along” attitude with the dictatorial Obama regime and radical leftist Democrats is backfiring more than the squishy and unprincipled duo could have ever imagined.
The new poll, conducted August 5-9, shows that only 23% of Americans view John Boehner favorably, a new all-time low for him. Among Republicans, still an overwhelming number disapprove of Boehner, known for his uncontrollable crying outbursts, with only 37% having a favorable view.
Backroom dealing, back-biting RINO Mitch McConnell, who is so charismatic that nearly four in 10 Americans (37%) have never heard of him, didn’t fair much differently.
McConnell, who became the Senate leader in January following a string of campaign promises that have already been broken, has only a 22% approval rating among Americans, with only 34% of Republicans finding McConnell favorable.
Both Boehner and McConnell have come under fire for supporting the funding of Obamacare, Planned Butcherhood, Obama’s illegal amnesty, as well as failing to fight to stop granting Obama fast-track trade authority.
Late July, conservative Congressman Mark Meadows from North Carolina launched a new resolution on the House floor, filing a historic motion requesting that establishment RINO Speaker of the House John Boehner vacate his position as speaker.
The blistering resolution stings Boehner with charges of causing the power of the legislative branch to shrink under his reign, as well as punishing members who vote in a way contrary to what Boehner desires.
McConnell’s decline falls on the heels of 2016 presidential candidate, principled constitutional conservative fighter Ted Cruz’s historic July takedown of the conniving RINO on the Senate floor for various lies (yes, he actually used the unpopular word that’s rarely used in D.C., “LIED”) McConnell has told to his fellow Republicans, the American people and the media in order to conceal his dirty dealings that support the Obama regime and big government.
To grasp the significance of Boehner and McConnell’s poor showing, their favorability ratings are even worse than hated California Communist Nancy Pelosi’s were while she was Speaker of the House prior to Boehner assuming the helm in 2010. In October of 2010, Gallup points out that Pelosi was viewed favorably by 26% of Americans, a higher score than either Boehner or McConnell. The weak leaders are also nipping at the heels of highly unpopular leftist and then-Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, who in October of last year was viewed favorably by only 21% of Americans.
Cruz’s powerful smackdown of establishment elitist McConnell last month included pointing out that the results in the Senate under McConnell’s leadership have not been one iota different than if Democrat Harry Reid were still in charge:
“There is a profound disappointment among the American people because we keep winning elections and then we keep getting leaders who don’t do anything they promised.
The American people were told ‘if only we have a Republican majority in the House, things will be different.’
Well, in 2010 the American people showed up in enormous numbers and we got a Republican majority in the House — and very little changed. Then the American people were told, ‘you know, the problem is the Senate. If only we get a Republican majority in the Senate and retire Harry Reid as majority leader, then things will be different.’
Well, in 2014 the American people rose up in enormous numbers, voted to do exactly that. We’ve had a Republican majority in both houses of Congress now for about six months.
What has that majority done?
First thing we did, in December, is we came back and passed a $1 trillion ‘cromnibus’ plan filled with pork and corporate welfare. That was the very first thing we did. Then this Republican majority voted to fund Obamacare, voted to fund President Obama’s unconstitutional executive amnesty. And then leadership rammed through the confirmation of Loretta lynch as Attorney General.
Madam President, which of those decisions would be one iota different if Harry Reid were still majority leader? Not a one. Not a one. This Senate operates exactly the same — the same priorities.
“It’s not that this majority doesn’t get things done. It does get things done, but it listens to one and only one voice,” Cruz said on the Senate Floor during his epic speech. “That is the voice of the Washington Cartel, of the lobbyists on K Street, of the big money and big corporations,” he asserted.
It ain’t over until the orange man cries.
Via The Hill
Conservative Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.) on Tuesday introduced a resolution to oust Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) from his leadership post, GOP aides said.
Read the resolution:
Well, the movement to oust Boehner fell one vote shy of its mark today, as crybaby John was chosen Speaker of the House again. These are the cowardly, self-serving assclowns in the GOP who have betrayed their consitutents and turned their backs on the principles upon which their party was built.
Boustany Jr., Charles
Duncan Jr., John
Herrera Beutler, Jaime
McMorris Rodgers, Cathy
Contact these useless, political hacks and let them know how you feel about their complete lack of courage and integrity.
Here are the few, brave individuals who actually took a stand against the disease known as “moderate Republicanism” in our House of Representatives.
Contact these honorable folks and tell them how much you appreciate their efforts in the face of overwhelming odds.
Capitol Switchboard: 1-202-224-3121.
House Members Contact List
Then contact your GOP representative(s) and tell them in no unceratain terms that if they vote to retain Mr. Boehner as Speaker of the House, you will never support them in any future election.
You may also telephone them via the Capitol switchboard at 1-202-224-3121.
FLASHABCK: March 9, 2011
House Speaker John Boehner is not a serious adult when it comes to addressing the out-of-control federal spending of the Democrat party. That is evident in his proposal to cut a largely inconsequential $61 Billion from the final seven months of this year’s budget.
To give you a good idea of just how astoundingly weak Boehner’s proposal is, consider that the budget deficit for February of this year ALONE was $223 Billion, or almost four times the amount that the Speaker proposes to cut by year’s end.
Even if the Senate agrees to sign on to these cuts, Obama’s obscene spending policies will still add another $1.6 Trillion to our already crippling and unsustainable $14.2 Trillion national debt.
Add to that, the fact that the President has crafted a monstrously irresponsible $3.7 Trillion budget for fiscal year 2012, and Boehner ‘s $61 Billion scheme is exposed for the pathetic monetary joke that it is.
To put it bluntly, if the Republican leader of the House is not willing to propose at least $700 Billion in cuts this year in the hopes that he may be able to strike a $350 Billion deal down the road, then he has no business being Speaker, or even being a member of the GOP leadership.
Sure, I understand that the Speaker of the House has no power to force the democrat-controlled Senate or the President to accept such a proposal, but he does have the authority to set the budget-cutting negotiations bar as high as he likes.
I ask you, why allow the Democrat leadership to malign and demonize you over a mere $61 Billion in proposed budget reductions when they could easily be maligning and demonizing you over a number many times higher than that?
At the end of the day, you’d have to be the most inept haggler in the world not to get at least a quarter of a Trillion dollars in cuts out of the bastards, and what’s more, they’d come away from the experience understanding that you actually are what you said you were in November.
Unfortunately for us all, John Boehner is not what he claimed to be during the conservative electoral tsunami of 2010.
In fact, he is a demonstrably unmotivated, unremarkable and unserious individual. who’s just made it painfully clear that he has no intention of confronting the tax-and-spend left in any appreciable way.
Weak willed Republicans just never learn do they?
House Speaker John Boehner indicated on Sunday that if Attorney General Eric Holder doesn’t proceed with the contempt charge against former IRS official Lois Lerner, that will be the end of it.
“The contempt charge has gone to the attorney general. And it’s up to the attorney general, Eric Holder, to prosecute this. And to assign someone to prosecute the case. Now will they do it? We don’t know. But the ball is in his court,” Boehner told Fox News’s Maria Bartiromo.
Asked if he would consider issuing an arrest warrant for Lerner, Boehner said although the Constitution allows it, he won’t do it.
“And so that’s a — I’m not quite sure that we want to get on that path,” he said.
“So you’re not looking to do that?” Bartiromo asked him.
“No. It’s never been used,” Boehner said. “I’m not the historian here. But it has never been used. And I’m not sure that it’s an appropriate way to go about this. It’s up to Eric Holder to do his job.”
“Do you think he will?” Bartiromo asked.
“I don’t know,” Boehner said – leaving it at that.
(Press reports noted that Congress did arrest someone cited for contempt, once, in 1935.)
The House of Representatives voted 231-187 last week to hold Lois Lerner in contempt of Congress for refusing to testify about her role in the targeting of conservative groups that applied for tax-exempt status before the 2012 election.
Lerner invoked her 5th Amendment rights after reading an opening statement in which she declared she’d done nothing wrong. Republicans said the fact that she gave a statement made her fair game for questioning.
The House also passed a resolution last week asking Holder to appoint a special prosecutor to investigate the IRS tax-exempt office.
Holder himself was held in contempt of Congress in June 2012 for failing to produce documents subpoenaed by Congress in connection with the Fast and Furious gun-running investigation.
After conducting a search and straw poll, a national tea party group has settled on a Republican primary challenger to House Speaker John A. Boehner, picking high school teacher J.D. WintereggJ.D. Winteregg to carry the tea party banner in the intraparty battle.
The announcement, which the Tea Party Leadership Fund (TPLF) will make Wednesday, could help Mr. Winteregg gain attention in a field dominated by Mr. Boehner and his massive campaign bank account. Mr. Winteregg is one of several men running against Mr. Boehner in the GOP primary in the speaker’s western Ohio district.
Rusty Humphries with the TPLF, a political action committee, said Mr. Boehner has failed to follow through on conservative goals during his time as speaker.
“This is a guy that has allowed spending to increase. This is a guy that fought for benefits for congressmen while at the same time fighting to cut benefits for our veterans,” Mr. Humphries said.
Mr. Boehner has been under fire from tea party groups over last year’s budget deal, which boosted spending in 2014 and 2015, and for this month’s debt vote, when he allowed a 13-month debt increase to pass without conditions on the strength of Democratic votes.
Mr. Humphries said voters in the district itself are ready to dump Mr. Boehner, who is serving his 12th term in Congress – and second as speaker.
“The one thing I found a lot when I was in the district is how few people have seen him in the district in a long time,” Mr. Humphries said. “This is a guy who has not kept up with his people.”
But a campaign aide for Mr. Boehner said he’s still well-connected to Ohio’s 8th congressional district.
“John and his wife Debbie still live in Butler County and call it home. They made that choice – and stuck with it, even when he became speaker – because it was important to them to remain part of the community that has always been central to his service in the House,” the aide said.
As for the policy fights, the speaker had said he wouldn’t allow another government shutdown or default on federal obligations – either of which could have resulted from the failure to pass a budget or a debt increase. Mr. Boehner has argued that the 2014 election will be fought over President Obama’s agenda, including his health care law.
Mr. Humphries said the Tea Party Leadership Fund will post billboards and run radio commercials aiding Mr. Winteregg, and said the more money people donate to the leadership fund, the more will be targeted to ousting Mr. Boehner.
Unseating top party leaders is rare.
Mr. Humphries has been signed to write a column for The Washington Times, which has not yet debuted.
Two years ago Mr. Boehner easily saw off another tea party challenger, defeating pro-life activist David Lewis with 84 percent to Mr. Lewis’s 16 percent.
The No. 2 Republican in the House, Majority Leader Eric Cantor, is also facing a primary challenge. Dave Brat, an economics professor at Randolph-Macon College, is challenging the Virginia Republican, arguing his support for passing an immigration bill is kowtowing to big-business interests.
Mr. Winteregg’s positions on the issues:
The premise that seems to align people from all sides in America is a disdain for our representatives in Congress. This is our common ground. Instead of fighting each other–to the delight of those in power – we need to come together for one objective to replace those in power. Fortunately, the Constitution provides us with a way – through an amendment process–that allows us to enact real change in D.C. I’ve come up with a plan that, when implemented within our Constitutional framework, will change how Congress functions. It’s easy to understand, easy to articulate, and easy to support. These four elements will be my focus while in Congress.
Community- All representatives must live among their constituents. The number of days they spend in Washington, D.C. will be capped. With the technology that exists, and with the need to diminish the lobbyist influence, this mandate will ensure that the representatives do what they’re meant to do – represent the people.
Authenticity- Immediately prior to entering Congress, representatives must have held a non-political, non-lobbying position for a period of 4 years. This will break up the political ladder climbing and ensure that our representatives understand what working in the “real world” is like under the current rules and regulations.
Service- The opportunity to represent a district should be viewed as an honor and framed in a way that reflects that. As such, this amazing service opportunity will be capped at 12 years. No representative or Senator may spend more than 12 years representing a district or state in D.C.
Transparency- No former representative or Senator walks out of D.C. as a member of the middle-class. As members of Congress, they – and their spouses – will be required to publicly and prominently display where all of their earnings are derived. No ranges – specific amounts. This instills another measure of accountability on those in D.C.
Reforming Congress must happen first. Only then will representatives be able to effectively–and fairly – fight for the issues that are important to their respective constituents.
In addition to these ideas of reform, I am proud to say that I am a Christian conservative Republican who believes that relying on the Constitution will help to push our exceptional country back in the right direction.
Premise of governance
I believe that words have meaning, so by extension, the Constitution means today what it meant when it was written. The Preamble to this great document makes clear that the Constitution was written, among other reasons, to secure the blessings of liberty. An activist federal government undermines this key founding principle, so I will work to restore our process of governance to what the founders originally intended with the Constitution as my guide.
We need to secure our borders and enforce the laws that we have on the books. I am 100% opposed to amnesty.
I believe in the free market Capitalist system, and the only way for that to thrive is for the government to have a minimalist approach in intervening.
Without life, there is no liberty. I am pro-life, no exceptions.
I believe in our second amendment right to keep and bear arms. This right should be vigorously defended from attempts by the federal government to undermine it.
We need to reduce the government involvement with respect to our healthcare. Allowing the free market to run its course will help to make healthcare more affordable to all. I am in support of the movement to entirely defund Obamacare.
As a public school teacher, I understand the importance of this issue. As someone who feels the effects of federal mandates, and as someone who has witnessed the toll it has taken on my colleagues and students, I believe that education is best left to the local level. Parents and communities know what is best for their own children, and these decisions need to be left to them.
Representatives need to understand that the government is not the primary source of economic growth. The private sector is more efficient and productive than any government effort. Representatives should work with constituents to achieve private solutions to public problems, and they should avoid at all costs taxing the citizens. Federal spending should be done within the parameters of a balanced budget. Government fraud, waste, and abuse should be addressed before any taxes are raised on the American people.
The House passed a “clean” debt ceiling increase Tuesday granting President Obama power to borrow as much as the government needs for the next 13 months, after House Republican leaders surrendered on their long-standing demand that debt hikes be matched with spending cuts.
Unable to muster his own troops, Speaker John A. Boehner, Ohio Republicans, had to turn to Democrats to provide the necessary votes. The bill, which cleared on a 221-201 vote, now goes to the Senate.
SEE ALSO: HURT: Obama reveals his obliviousness at Monticello
The legislation must be approved by the end of the month, when the Treasury Department says it will run out of borrowing room.
Even as he advanced the bill and voted for it, Mr. Boehner washed his hands of the blame.
“It’s the president driving up the debt and the president wanting to do nothing about the debt that’s occurring,” the speaker said. “So let his party give him the debt-ceiling increase that he wants.”
Democrats hailed the vote as a victory and heaped praise on Mr. Boehner, who they said he put the country ahead of the tea party wing of the GOP by holding the vote.
Just 28 Republicans joined 193 Democrats in voting for the increase. Two Democrats and 199 Republicans voted against it.
“Once again, the Republican Party and their caucus has shown they’re not responsible enough to be ruling and governing here,” said Rep. Joseph Crowley, New York Democrat.
SEE ALSO: Conservative group calls for Boehner’s head
Business groups, worried about the effects of bumping up against the limit, urged Congress to act.
But conservative and tea party groups warned of dire political consequences for Republicans who voted for the increase.
For the past century, Congress has imposed a borrowing limit on the federal government. As the government has run up record deficits under President George W. Bush and Mr. Obama, lawmakers have repeatedly raised the limit – though it’s often been a major battle.
As of Monday, the gross debt stood at $17.259 trillion. It was $10.629 trillion when Mr. Obama was inaugurated in 2009.
Under the new debt policy, the government’s borrowing limit would be suspended until March 15, 2015, meaning whatever debts are incurred until then would be tacked onto the legal limit.
It’s impossible to predict how much debt would accumulate, but the government has added more than $800 billion in gross debt in the past 13 months.
For Republicans, the vote was a major retreat. When he became speaker in 2011, Mr. Boehner vowed to use debt increases as leverage to extract spending cuts. He set a goal of matching debt increases “dollar for dollar” with cuts.
In 2011, during the first debt fight of his tenure, he won a deal that has cut overall spending for two consecutive years – the first time that has been achieved since 1950.
Since that peak, though, Republicans have struggled to win concessions on three successive debt votes and has reversed its push against spending. Indeed, December’s budget deal offset some of the cuts Republicans won in the 2011 budget agreement.
On Tuesday, Republicans said they were left with little choice.
With so many Republicans opposed to any debt increase, leaders were unable to come up with the votes to pass a plan that would halt parts of Obamacare or build the Keystone XL pipeline in exchange for a debt increase.
Most of the 28 Republicans who voted in favor of the clean debt increase were leaders, chairmen of committees or members of the Appropriations Committee.
Rep. Tom Cole, an Oklahoma Republican who voted against the debt increase, said Mr. Boehner had no options, but he added that the result of agreeing to a third straight increase with no major cuts attached is that Republicans lose leverage in any future debt negotiations.
“I understood the previous times, but I think we’re slipping into a bad habit,” he said. “I’m not here condemning people for what they did – they’ve done it to try and deal with the immediate situation, but I think long term, we need to rethink how we do it and a lot of Democrats would like to get rid of the whole debt ceiling idea altogether. I think that’s a mistake, personally.”
Mr. Obama and congressional Democrats remained united throughout the battle for a clean debt increase. That left Mr. Boehner with no negotiating partner and no offer of his own.
“We don’t have 218 votes. And when you don’t have 218 votes, you have nothing,” the speaker told reporters ahead of the vote, explaining his lack of leverage.
Just a single Republican – Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp of Michigan — spoke during the floor debate.
Most Republican lawmakers seemed eager to move on and saw the vote as a way to “clear the decks” of a thorny political problem and resume attacks on Obamacare and Mr. Obama’s other policies.
Democratic leaders were eager to debate the bill. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of California said it proved that Democrats were the ones interested in upholding the Constitution’s directive that the validity of the debt never be questioned.
“The full faith and credit of the United States of America is not in doubt,” Mrs. Pelosi said.
In an abrupt switch from his months of work to bring immigration reform back from life support, Speaker John Boehner told reporters today that the issue cannot move forward until President Obama proves he can be a trustworthy partner to implement the law as written.
“There’s widespread doubt about whether this administration can be trusted to enforce our laws. And it’s going to be difficult to move any immigration legislation until that changes,” Boehner said.
The change in tack comes after rank-and-file members pushed hard against action on the issue this year when immigration “principles” were unveiled at a retreat last week and top immigration hawks had begun to discuss how they could thwart Boehner in his march to bring the issue to the floor.
In the hours before Boehner made his surprise announcement, lawmakers and aides had told Breitbart News that early discussions had begun about whether to force a special leadership election in the event Boehner moved forward with immigration legislation.
“It’s going to require blood if this happens,” one GOP member said.
At the press conference where he made his surprise announcement, Boehner said Obama has exacerbated the distrust on the issue with his recent vows to act with or without Congress.
“The American people, including many of my members, do not believe that the reform that we’re talking about will be implemented as it was intended to be. The President seems to change the health care law on a whim, whenever he likes. Now he’s running around the country telling everyone that he’s going to keep acting on his own. He keeps talking about his phone and his pen. And he’s feeding more distrust about whether he’s committed to the rule of law,” Boehner said.
The Ohio Republican didn’t fully close the door, saying Obama could work with Republicans to help enact some of their priority bills to rebuild trust and that he would continue to discuss the matter with his conference.
“I’m going to continue to talk to my members about how to move forward, but the president is going to have to do his part as well,” Boehner said.
And anti-amnesty activists were not letting down their guard. “Unfortunately since we know that since the Republican leadership wants to push amnesty… we can’t trust these declarations,” said Rosemary Jenks, the director of government relations for NumbersUSA.
Prior to putting the brakes on immigration reform, Boehner had become increasingly isolated in his strong push for action.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said yesterday that it’s unlikely any legislation could be enacted this year, a major blow, and GOP and conservative pundits had repeatedly questioned whether moving forward made any political sense.
GOP lawmakers, meanwhile, loudly complained that Obama was not a trustworthy partner when Boehner unveiled his immigration “principles” at a retreat in Cambridge, Maryland last week.
In the days after the retreat, Boehner continued to move forward, issuing promotional materials about the principles. Rep. Jeff Denham of California, a top proponent for moving on immigration, told Breitbart News that leadership wanted to bring legislation to the floor as soon as possible.
With Boehner continuing to march forward, top immigration hawks had begun to organize much more dramatic responses to try to head him off.
“There has been talk among House Members about forcing new leadership elections in the House to include a new Speaker if they try to bring an immigration bill to the floor this year,” a senior GOP aide said Wednesday. The GOP member and two other aides said such discussions had occurred among House Republicans.
“I think it should cost him his speakership,” Rep. Raul Labrador (R-ID) told Roll Call about if Boehner brought immigration to the floor in 2014.
Boehner survived a mutiny in early 2013 after the fiscal cliff showdown. But it is unclear how widespread the discussions about challenging Boehner over immigration were – several lawmakers who were part of the earlier coup attempt said they hadn’t heard anything about any such effort relating to immigration.
Eric Gurr is a 48-year-old Ohioan and a lifelong Republican. He was born and raised in Hamilton, a suburb of Cincinnati. Mr. Gurr is the CEO of a computer consulting firm based in West Chester, Ohio. He is married and has three children as well as two grandchildren. He and his family reside in fast-growing Liberty Township. He has never run for political office before.
Oh, and he just happens to be challenging House Speaker John Boehner in the Republican primary for Ohio’s 8th congressional district.
Mr. Gurr was kind enough to grant yours truly an exclusive interview.
ROBERT ELLIOTT: Thank you for agreeing to do this interview, Mr. Gurr.
So did you go to college in Ohio? How does your family feel about your decision to run for high public office? What prompted someone who has never run for political office before to decide to challenge one of the most powerful elected officials in the country?
ERIC GURR: I went to college at The University of Cincinnati. I started out in mechanical engineering in 1983, then switched to computer related. I dropped out in ’87 and have worked with computers, programming, and related endeavors since that time.
My family has been very supportive of my decision.
What prompted me to run was the realization that since 2008 Mr. Boehner had slowly pulled away from my views and what I thought was in the best interest of the nation long-term. I was not in favor of the TARP programs and I still think our monetary policy is on the wrong track.
Syria was the tipping point. I thought that war with Syria was a terrible idea. Essentially it is a very high-risk proposition with little or nothing to be gained. I also believe strongly that the immigration bill was a bad bill at the wrong time. It makes no sense at all to add to a workforce burdened by high unemployment and underemployment.
When I started putting all of these things together I realized that Speaker Boehner has just been in Washington too long. Publicly elected servants should serve a few terms and then leave lest they become forever detached from their constituents. Over time this leads to a moderation not only in positions and policy, but in passion for the fight. Inside that beltway, conservative values (both economically and socially) are seen as “extreme.” We as the base of the GOP have no desire nor need to apologize for these conservative principles as they have served the nation quite well for over 200 years.
ROBERT ELLIOTT: What are your thoughts on the multiple scandals that have engulfed the Obama administration – IRS, NSA, Benghazi, Fast & Furious, etc.?
ERIC GURR: The IRS scandal is the biggest scandal to hit this country since Watergate. The most feared institution has been used for political purposes. I find it highly improbable that Ms. Lois Lerner acted of her own volition. I am stunned that the Democrats don’t seem to understand the gravity of this situation. This scandal needs to be investigated until we know absolutely everything.
The NSA is not permitted to spy on citizens without a proper warrant. I think that the Constitution is quite clear on this. I know there are many who say that this invasion of privacy protects us all, but where does that end?
I also believe Benghazi is a real and serious scandal. If we follow the timeline it appears that we first received word of an attack at 10:00 PM. If the State Department didn’t send help they must answer the question: why? The canned response is that the main thrust of the attack happened at 4:00 AM and the forces would not have had time to get there. But there is no way they could have known when the next attack was coming.
Fast & Furious was probably a well-intended venture that spiraled out of hand. But when our own agents are shot with these weapons I think some answers should be expected. The attorney general has some real inconsistencies in his statements to Congress and needs to be brought back on the carpet. If we cannot trust the attorney general to follow the laws, who can we trust?
ROBERT ELLIOTT: How do you feel about the recent efforts of House and (some) Senate Republicans to defund Obamacare?
ERIC GURR: I think Ted Cruz and others supporting him are on the right track. With control of only the House there are few tools left in the tool box. It will be no consolation for Republicans to say in three or four months, “We told you this would happen.”
The bill is axiomatically prevented from working for several reasons. The biggest reason being that there is no addressing of the supply side in the bill. If you want to lower cost while increasing demand for services you must first address the supply. It takes years to become a doctor. So the first portion of a serious bill like this would have been to delay for eight years while you fund an increase in the number of doctors, nurses, and other healthcare providers and equipment. This bill added an anti-science and anti-technology excise tax of 2.3 percent. If the GOP is somehow successful in the endeavor and at least delays implementation by a year or two the economy will rebound, job growth will ensue, and we will have a clearer picture of what needs to be done to reform existing systems. If some of the old guard in the GOP leadership continue to delay and obfuscate, we’ll never get the opportunity to explain to the American people (the few who still support the bill) how damaging it is to the long term economic viability of the nation.
ROBERT ELLIOTT: Candidates who seek to unseat incumbents are almost always at a financial disadvantage. This is especially true in your case, since you are taking on such a powerful and high-profile incumbent in the Speaker of the House. How much cash do you think your campaign will need to raise in order to mount a credible challenge? And how do you plan to raise it? Have you considered a “money-bomb” type of event?
ERIC GURR: Money is the challenge. I’ve been contacted by people all over the country suggesting a “money bomb” type of event. I have tried to contact a few of the conservative outlets, but have been told I must be “vetted” first. Over the past two weeks I’ve tried to respond to as many online requests as I can and that’s starting to produce. The website gurrforcongress.com is averaging over 300 visits per day. I’ve tried to analyze the situation in the 8th congressional district of Ohio and the good news is that millions of dollars probably won’t be needed. Speaker Boehner can only bombard the voters with so much information. I’ve figured I’ll need about $300,000 to make a serious challenge. Although it sounds like a lot, the reality is if I can get a few thousand people to donate $25 – $50 I’ll be in a strong position. In order to become competitive with his fundraising machine I’ll have to look outside the district. With a solid drive and $100,000 or so I think I can pull that off.
ROBERT ELLIOTT: How do you feel about term limits? If elected, would you pledge to serve only a certain number of terms?
ERIC GURR: I’m in favor of term limits but much more in favor of politicians keeping their word. I would not serve more than four terms and prefer to serve three, then be challenged in a primary to get the word out about new candidates. If you lose, you lose. If not, the next year there are a few candidates the public has come to know who can run for the seat and I would drop out. There is absolutely no chance I would serve more than four [terms]. A citizen legislator must be a citizen first. If you stay in Washington for 15 or 20 years, you have become a professional politician.
ROBERT ELLIOTT: How would you work to tackle the federal budget deficit? Assuming you plan to support spending reductions, are there any areas that you think should be off-limits to cuts?
ERIC GURR: The deficit should be cut in two phases. In the first phase I would propose to Congress cutting 3% across the board with an exemption for Social Security and Medicare. Then I would push hard for a significant cut in the capital gains tax. This tax cut has historically increased revenue. I would also delve deeper into cuts for the EPA, agricultural subsidies, and even the Department of Education. All of these agencies have poor track records recently and have seen their budgets bloated beyond any reasonable level of growth.
Defense spending is worth a look, but I don’t know that I would commit to any cuts at this point. It’s not that I think there isn’t room, it’s just that I know when you have a certain level of access to information you may be inclined to change your views. I am in favor of missile defense but not in favor of a large standing army with bases spread across the world.
The American people have felt the pinch for five years and I think it is time for Washington, D.C. to share in a little of the belt tightening.
ROBERT ELLIOTT: Would your campaign like to communicate a direct message to potential donors and/or Republican primary voters in your district?
Frank Milillo, Eric Gurr’s campaign manager:
As many of you may have heard, Hamilton native Eric Gurr is challenging John Boehner in the May primary for the Ohio 8th district U.S. congressional seat. Many of us have supported Mr. Boehner over the past 20-plus years, but I think many of you now agree it’s time for a change. Eric is a principled conservative and wants to cut spending, lower taxes to promote jobs and economic growth, and put an end to the ill-conceived Obamacare.
It is difficult to defeat a politician as entrenched in Washington culture as Mr. Boehner has become. He has nationwide donations and deep pockets. But we believe the people of Ohio deserve better, and with your donation of as little as $25 we can get the word out and make a hopeful and helpful change for the people of Ohio and the United States of America.
To donate, please visit the campaign website at gurrforcongress.com
Orr if you prefer, you can send a check to:
Gurr For Congress
7182 Liberty Centre Drive, Suite O
West Chester, Ohio 45069
Nancy Pelosi isn’t going anywhere.
While many thought the California Democrat would step down as House minority leader after this Congress, Pelosi confidants now believe she will remain atop House leadership through 2016 and maybe even longer.
Pelosi herself won’t tip her hand about her plans. But she doesn’t appear to be contemplating retirement.
“I’m not here on a shift. I’m here on a mission — and when my work is done, that’s when I will leave,” Pelosi said in a recent interview with POLITICO.
A mission she says. Hmmm, seems that mission is to pad her riches, and destroy what is left of our Constitution.
You would be right! He wants to cause as much pain for the people, believing they will blame the GOP. This is all about one thing the 2014 mid-term elections, and Obama really digs using the word ransom apparently
This is getting so old. House Republicans came up with yet another proposal to fund the government and avoid hitting the debt ceiling. Guy Benson noted that the plan Harry Reid called “extreme” in a diatribe on the Senate floor, is very close to the Senate plan. But Democrats can’t agree to it, because then they couldn’t go out and accuse the Republicans of being partisan. The White House rejected the proposal before Nancy Pelosi could even get her face in front of a microphone.
An hour earlier rank-and-file Republicans came out of the meeting to say their leaders had proposed taking a plan being worked on in the Senate and attaching the two Obamacare changes, and were going to put that bill on the House floor later Tuesday.
But by 11 a.m., Mr. Boehner and his chief lieutenants sounded much less certain, and several Republicans said it would be a close vote if the bill were brought to the floor.
Democratic leaders said not to count on them for help in getting the bill through the House, and the White House also rejected the plan, saying it preferred the Senate’s negotiations.
That deal, still under construction, doesn’t make any major dents in the president’s health law.
The White House released a statement that includes the word “ransom,” of course.
Yes, of course!
Boehner came to the podium a few moments ago and said that they are working on a plan that provides fairness under Obamacare, that there are a lot of opinions on how to do it and that they are working on a bipartisan solution to ensure we don’t default. Ugh. I just hate to hear Boehner continue to use Obama’s ‘scare language’. They only way we default is if the treasury refuses to pay our interest. But Boehner’s too much of a wuss to say that.
So basically Boehner wouldn’t give any details on what they are working on. But apparently they are planning a vote on something today and it’s supposed to pass.
UPDATE: White House rejects House deal, whatever it is…
WASHINGTON TIMES – The White House rejected the House GOP plan to end the government shutdown, saying it preferred the Senate’s negotiations.
That deal, still under construction, doesn’t make any major dents in the president’s health law.
The House bill would take the same details about how long a stopgap spending bill and the debt increase should last, and expand it with the new Obamacare provisions.
The president has said repeatedly that members of Congress don’t get to demand ransom for fulfilling their basic responsibilities to pass a budget and pay the nation’s bills,” ssid White House spokeswoman Amy Brundage.
“Unfortunately, the latest proposal from House Republicans does just that in a partisan attempt to appease a small group of Tea Party Republicans who forced the government shutdown in the first place.”
Bipartisan congressional leaders are conspiring once again to stiff-arm the American people and preserve ObamaCare, even as that monstrously unfair, unaffordable, and unnecessary scheme shows signs of complete unworkability.
Late yesterday, Senators Harry Reid (D-Nevada) and Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky) reportedly struck a bipartisan agreement to raise the debt limit and reopen the government, without any conditions and without relieving the American people from ObamaCare.
This morning, House leaders came out with a slightly different version of the same “deal.”
In this post, I will try to summarize and critique each of the various elements in play.
The short version: It’s a non-starter for grassroots America.
NOTE: The details below describe proposals by the two chambers’ respective leaders. They do not necessarily reflect the views of individual members of either chamber. Also, some details are unclear at presstime and are subject to revision as new information comes out.
Senate: Immediately reopen the government and fund it at fiscal year 2013 levels until January 15, 2014.
FreedomWorks: There is no need to reopen the government all at once. Instead, the House should continue to hold out for a halt to ObamaCare. To reduce the political pressure on itself, the House can continue its smart policy of passing targeted “mini-CRs” for specific, high-profile agencies or programs (such as NIH cancer clinical trials).
Senate: Extend the debt limit until February 7.
House: Same. But also: Remove the President’s flexibility to evade the debt limit through so-called “extraordinary measures” (e.g., borrowing temporarily from certain federal trust funds).
FreedomWorks: As for raising the debt limit, ordinarily, we’d say don’t do it at all, or least not without significant offsetting spending cuts. But the current government shutdown is admittedly not an ordinary situation. The standoff began with a grassroots effort to halt ObamaCare, and that fight should remain front and center. Therefore, while parts of the government remain shuttered, the debt limit should be lifted temporarily, without strings or conditions, in order to take the “default” canard off the table and restore the House’s leverage over spending and ObamaCare. P.S. Eliminating “extraordinary measures” is a good idea on its own merits, because it gives Congress greater power over borrowing, as the Founders intended; but the reform is not urgently needed in the current situation.
Health Insurer Reinsurance Fee
Senate: Eliminate the health insurer reinsurance fee.
House: No provision.
FreedomWorks: A sop to the labor unions. Abolishing this tax-like fee is fine, but only if we also abolish the $10 billion subsidy to the health insurance industry that it funds.
Income Fraud Prevention for Exchange Subsidies
Senate: No provision.
House: Require that the HHS Secretary certify that the health care exchanges are secure from income fraud.
FreedomWorks: Fig leaf. Merely restates current law. HHS can’t even manage to process our passwords; how are we supposed to trust them to prevent people from lying about their income to qualify for taxpayer subsidies – especially after President Obama publicly announced that he would not bother to verify applicants’ income claims?
Medical Device Tax
Senate: No provision. (Democrats, who control the Senate, are said to strongly oppose repeal or delay of this 2.3 percent excise tax on medical devices.)
House: Two-year delay of the medical device tax.
FreedomWorks: The House provision is a sop to the medical device industry, which notably employs a senior staffer of Speaker Boehner’s. We say: Not just no, but hell no! No more relief for corporations or unions until the American people get relief from this terrible law!
Apply ObamaCare to Political Leaders
Senate: No provision.
House: Apply ObamaCare to Members of Congress, the President, the Vice President, and members of the President’s Cabinet (but note: not to their staffs).
FreedomWorks: This provision, while fully justified (and we would also apply it to congressional staff), is no substitute for relieving the American people from ObamaCare.
Committee to Negotiate Future Spending and Tax Hikes
Senate: Agree to negotiate with the other chamber on possible future spending and tax increases in the context of a House-Senate budget conference committee, which has been stalled since May. Also discuss cuts to Medicare and Social Security.
FreedomWorks: Negotiating a budget is a good thing. But increasing spending and taxes is not. Additionally, linking budget talks to the CR/ObamaCare fight is a strategic mistake. (Sadly, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wisconsin), who claims to be an opponent of ObamaCare, was the leading force behind forging this misguided linkage, which undermines the efforts of grassroots America to halt the government takeover of their health care.)
Senate: Fully fund ObamaCare. Don’t delay any part of ObamaCare. Provide no relief to the American people from ObamaCare.
FreedomWorks: Has the disconnect between America and Washington ever been wider?
William Teach asks the question that should be asked of every bill, does it meet constitutional guidelines? Texas Congressman Steve Stockman says it does not
(Washington Times) Rep. Steve Stockman, a Texas Republican, said Friday that the Senate immigration bill is a revenue measure, which makes it unconstitutional because all revenue bills must start in the House.
“Not only is the Senate amnesty bill an abuse of taxpayers and immigrants, it’s utterly unconstitutional,” Mr. Stockman said. “The Senate cannot invent its own amnesty taxes.”
He called on House Speaker John A. Boehner to officially reject the Senate bill as unconstitutional using what’s known in Congress as the “blue slip” process, which is when the House informs the Senate that one of its bills contains taxes or spending and therefore must come from the House.
Blue slip procedures are considered privileged motions and can be brought quickly to the chamber floor for debate and a final vote.
I’d mention that Article 1, Section 7, Clause 1, but Democrats and some Republicans have amnesty on their minds and won’t be dissuaded by the ultimate legal document of our Republic.
Sadly, the Constitution matters little to our “leaders”. People ask what is wrong with America? We ignore our Constitution, that is what is wrong with our nation.
The Internal Revenue Service is now facing a class action lawsuit over allegations that it improperly accessed and stole the health records of some 10 million Americans, including medical records of all California state judges.
According to a report by Courthousenews.com, an unnamed HIPAA-covered entity in California is suing the IRS, alleging that some 60 million medical records from 10 million patients were stolen by 15 IRS agents. The personal health information seized on March 11, 2011, included psychological counseling, gynecological counseling, sexual/drug treatment and other medical treatment data.
“This is an action involving the corruption and abuse of power by several Internal Revenue Service agents,” the complaint reads. “No search warrant authorized the seizure of these records; no subpoena authorized the seizure of these records; none of the 10,000,000 Americans were under any kind of known criminal or civil investigation and their medical records had no relevance whatsoever to the IRS search. IT personnel at the scene, a HIPPA facility warning on the building and the IT portion of the searched premises, and the company executives each warned the IRS agents of these privileged records,” it continued.
According to the case, the IRS agents had a search warrant for financial data pertaining to a former employee of the John Doe company, however, “it did not authorize any seizure of any healthcare or medical record of any persons, least of all third parties completely unrelated to the matter,” the complaint read.
The class action lawsuit against the IRS seeks $25,000 in compensatory damages “per violation per individual” in addition to punitive damages for constitutional violations. Thus, compensatory damages could start at a minimum of $250 billion.
It’s an Obama world…
The IRS told a pro-life group that it had to promote abortion or they wouldn’t qualify for nonprofit status.
World Net Daily reported:
The Internal Revenue Service already has confessed to targeting and trying to injure tea party, Constitution and patriot organizations, by demanding answers to arbitrary questions and delaying their applications for a tax status so they could operate.
Now WND has learned that the IRS also put an organization in its bull’s-eye that wanted to do nothing more than share its pro-life message with churches.
Cherish Life Ministries was created to be a non-profit under the IRS 501(c)3 provision so that churches would feel comfortable working together…
…Shinn said the IRS contacted him regarding his application for nonprofit status, and was told he didn’t qualify.
“The representative was telling me I had to provide information on all aspects of abortion, I couldn’t just educate the church from the pro-life perspective,” he said. “Every time I pressed her on this issue and asked her to clarify her position, she would state that it wasn’t what she was saying, and then, she would repeat it almost the same way.”
The IRS agent did not respond to a WND request for comment on the ministry’s position.
But Shinn said he was accused of setting up a political organization.
“I asked her why she said we were political organization and she said it was because we had said in our application that we did less than 5 percent political activity. I explained to her that this was what was stated in the application and all we were doing was acknowledging that we were doing less than 5 percent political activity,” he said.
When a Tennessee lawyer asked the IRS for tax-exempt status for a mentoring group that trained high school and college students about conservative political philosophy, the agency responded with a list of 95 questions in 31 parts, including an ultimatum for a list of everyone the group had trained, or planned to train.
‘Provide details regarding all training you have provided or will provide,’ the IRS demanded. ‘Indicate who has received or will receive the training and submit copies of the training material.’
That question was part of the tax collection agency’s February 14, 2012 letter to Kevin Kookogey. founder of the group Linchpins of Liberty. He had submitted his application 13 months earlier.
‘Can you imagine my responsibility to parents if I disclosed the names of their children to the IRS?’ he asked MailOnline.
It’s ‘an impossible question to answer fully and truthfully,’ he said, ‘without disclosing the names of anyone I ever taught, or would ever teach, including students.’
Like the leaders of many tea party-affiliated groups whose tax-exemption applications have become the subject of angry complaints, Kookogey called the IRS’s inquisition an overreach, ‘especially considering that my organization mentors high school and college students.’
It ‘should send chills through your spine,’ he told MailOnline, ‘that the government would ask me to identify those I teach, and to provide details of what I teach them.’
The 13-month delay, while burdensome, was far shorter than those some other groups endured. According to a report released late Tuesday by the IRS’s Office of Inspector General, the average delay at one point was 574 days.
But Kookogey said a $30,000 grant was canceled as a result of the IRS’s months-long radio silence, when he couldn’t tell his donor that Linchpins had earned its 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status.
That money would have made a significant difference to the group, judging from its public filings in Tennessee. In 2011, Linchpins of Liberty reported collecting just $3,460 in contributions, and spending $7,328 on its programs.
The group’s online materials refer to it as ‘an American leadership development enterprise.’ Its stated purpose is to mentor high school and college students, placing an emphasis on Western civilization and an old-style core curriculum – what previous generations called the ‘great books.’
‘Our ideas are opposed to the Obama administration, but we’re not tea party,’ Kookogey told The Tennessean.
It’s that lack of a tea party connection, he said, that makes his predicament so maddening.
He told MailOnline that nothing about his group – ‘not our name or our description or our website, or anything’ – should have placed it among the organizations the IRS chose to scrutinize closely by using key words like ‘tea party,’ ‘9/12,’ and ‘patriots’ as qualifiers.
‘I’m not a Tea Party group. I’m not a Patriot group by name’ he told NewsChannel 5 in Nashville.
‘We mentor high school and college students in conservative political philosophy. It’s a one on one relationship.’
Kookogey summed it up in an interview with MailOnline as ‘unethical, unconstitutional, and unfair,’ later asserting in an email that ‘[w]e were targeted by the IRS based on our political beliefs and the content of our speech.’
The American Center for Law and Justice, which represents 27 conservative groups including Linchpins of Liberty, is planning to file suit against the IRS.
Jay Sekulow, that organization’s chief counsel, wrote on Tuesday that ‘the IRS abuse is ongoing.’
‘Even though the IRS admitted wrongdoing,’ Sekulow wrote in an essay for FoxNews.com, even though the Inspector General’s report indicates that wrongdoing was widespread, the IRS still hasn’t withdrawn its overbroad and unconstitutional questions, and it still hasn’t granted the exemptions it should grant, despite the fact that some applications have been pending for more than two years.’
The Inspector General’s report includes a list of ‘the seven questions’ the IRS asked right-wing groups that were later ‘identified as being unnecessary.’
Its request for the list of students trained by Linchpins of Liberty was not among them.
The report also largely exonerates political appointees in the Treasury Department and at the top of the IRS, instead blaming mid-level bureaucrats for providing ‘ineffective management’ and using ‘inappropriate criteria’ to red-flag conservative groups.
It makes no mention of anyone in the White House directing the IRS to play political favorites. But The Washington Post has reported that ‘senior IRS officials’ in Washington, D.C. were notified of the practice in 2011.
In December of that year, Kookogey says, he called the IRS’s nonprofit evaluation arm in Cincinnati, Ohio, to find out why his group’s application had taken so long.
The agent on the other end of the line, he said, told him, ‘We are waiting on guidance from our superiors as to your organization and similar organizations.’
Attorney General Eric Holder has said that he ordered the FBI to initiate a criminal probe on Friday, when he learned about the IRS’s practices.
The IRS’s actions, he said, were, ‘certainly outrageous and unacceptable, but we are examining the facts to see if there were criminal violations.’
Holder is expected to testify in a House Judiciary Committee hearing on Wednesday in Washington. On Friday the House Ways and Means Committee will hear testimony from acting IRS Commissioner Steven Miller and Treasury Inspector General J. Russell George.
Florida Republican Senator Marco Rubio has called for Miller to lose his job.
‘At a bare minimum, those involved with this deeply offensive use of government power have committed a violation of the public trust that has already had a profoundly chilling effect on free speech,’ Rubio wrote Monday in a letter to Treasury Secretary Jack Lew. ‘Such behavior cannot be excused with a simple apology.’
‘It is clear the IRS cannot operate with even a shred of the American people’s confidence under the current leadership,’ Rubio continued. ‘Therefore, I strongly urge that you and President Obama demand the IRS Commissioner’s resignation, effective immediately.’
On Friday, Sekulow demanded that the IRS immediately approve the tax-exempt status applications of his organization’s 10 legal clients, including Linchpins of Liberty, that are still waiting. He issued the agency an ultimatum: Grant the requests by noon on May 17, or prepare to fight in court.
‘We are demanding that the IRS grant our remaining clients tax-exempt status immediately,’ Sekulow said in a statement. ‘If that does not occur by Friday, we will advise our clients of their right to sue the IRS for the redress of their grievances.’
By all accounts she did a splendid job targeting anti-Obama groups.
Via Beltway Confidential:
Lois Lerner, the senior executive in charge of the IRS tax exemption department and the person at the center of the exploding scandal over the IRS targeting conservative, evangelical and pro-Israel non-profits, has been given $42,531 in bonuses since 2009.
That figure was included in data provided by the IRS in response to a Freedom of Information Act request by The Washington Examiner. Lerner is director of the IRS exempt organizations division, which processes and approves or denies applications from groups seeking tax-exempt status.
Lerner received $17,220 for 2009, $24,691 for 2010 and $10,620 for 2011, the most recent year for which the I(RS said data was available.
The Treasury Inspector General’s damaging report on the IRS-Tea Party scandal has destroyed the administration’s claim that low-level workers in a Cincinnati, Ohio office are to blame, revealing that 10 of 12 agency offices referenced in the affair are in Washington.
The report repeatedly references actions taken by the Washington-based Exempt Organizations unit and guidance specialists also in Washington. What’s more, the report was researched in the Exempt Organizations offices and the Cincinnati-based Determinations Units, which has received the blame for targeting Tea Party groups.
The audit, for example, probes into how the Cincinnati-based Determinations Unit developed its plan to pay attention to groups with the words “Tea Party,” “Patriot,” and other phrases used by anti-Obama groups during the 2010 election.
Washington-based offices denied involvement, but did change the “criteria” for groups to target in July 2011. Instead of looking for “Tea Party” groups seeking tax exempt status to investigate, the criteria was broadened to “political, lobbying or [general] advocacy.”
However, “the team of specialists subsequently changed the criteria in January 2012” back, apparently without telling their bosses. “Specialists” are both Washington- and Ohio- based.
Popular talk radio host Mark Levin, one of the first to post the IG report online, suggested that the House committees investigating the scandal use the IG’s “High-Level Organization Chart of Offices Referenced in this Report” on page 29 in picking who should testify. He suggested that the heads of all 12 be called to testify.
In the midst of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) scandal, individuals and groups, alike, are continuing to come forward with ever-startling allegations. On Wednesday, Dr. Anne Hendershott, a devout Catholic and a noted sociologist, professor and author, exclusively told TheBlaze that she believes she may have been one of the IRS’s targets.
According to Hendershott, the IRS audited her in 2010 and demanded to know who was paying her and “what their politics were.”
It all started with a phone call she received at her home in May of that year – a call during which Hendershott was told she would be audited. A letter that followed on May 19, 2010 solidified the IRS’s request to meet her in person two months later in July. While IRS investigations are certainly not uncommon occurrences, the professor believes that the situation surrounding hers was more-than-curious.
“The IRS calls my house and says… ‘I just wanted to let you know that we’re going to be auditing your business’ and I said ‘My businesses?’ and he said, ‘You know the expenses you take off for writing,” the academic recalls.
Hendershott was surprised she was being audited on business grounds considering she does not operate an entrepreneurial endeavor in the traditional sense. In addition to her academic work, she told TheBlaze that she occasionally freelances for Catholic outlets and for the Wall Street Journal. But can this really be considered “business” activity?
“I don’t make a lot of money from writing. In fact most years I don’t show a profit,” she told TheBlaze.
Hendershott said some of the outlets and organizations she has written for haven’t paid her a cent.
But the circumstances surrounding the irregular nature of the experience don’t end there. Hendershott noted it was particularly surprising that she, alone, was audited. Her husband, who brings in the vast majority of the family’s income, was not included in the IRS’s inquiry – even though the Hendershotts always files jointly.
So when the agent explained that she would need to come alone and in person to discuss her “business” activity in July of 2010, the professor was perplexed.
“[The IRS agent] didn’t even let me decide when it would be good for me… He didn’t want my husband to come,” she said of the meeting, which was held at an IRS office in New Haven, Connecticut.
The process was a grueling one, including many questions that Hendershott felt were political in nature. Numerous records were requested before the in-person meeting, as well as during and after.
“Every question had to do with bank deposits we made. Every single question,” she said. “What is this money? And I didn’t know a lot of it. We had to go to our bank and get deposits back. We had to get records showing where the money came from.”
While asking about the deposits, the agent wanted to know if the monies came from groups and, if so, what the organizations’ politics were.
The mention of groups, Hendershott notes, is particularly interesting, as she had been writing for numerous Catholic outlets and organizations at the time. In addition to Catholic World Report and the Catholic Advocate, she also penned op-eds for the Wall Street Journal. Many of these writings were critical of President Barack Obama and his policies.
And the plot thickens. Among the organizations she targeted in her writings were progressive groups highly supportive of Democratic causes, including: Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good, Catholics United, and Catholic Democrats.
At the time, one of the founders of Catholics United, Chris Korzen, had become a target of her work, as she exposed, in her view, his true leftist agenda and some of the complicated theological stances the left-of-center organizations he associated with were taking. Plus, there were alleged financial ties with billionaire liberal George Soros. Here’s just two paragraphs from an article she wrote in March 2010, just months before her meeting with IRS officials:
On its website, Catholics United describes itself as a 501(c) (4) non-profit organization – eligible to accept donations. But, Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good emerged in 2005 as a kind of sister organization to Catholics United. A 501(c) (3) organization, donors can claim a deduction against personal income tax when they donate money to Catholics in Alliance. Reviewing the 2007 IRS 990 forms for both Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good and Catholics United raises some questions, because Chris Korzen is listed as having received $84,821 in compensation for 40 hours per week from Catholics in Alliance on the group’s 990 Form – even though the Catholics United website claimed he was the director there during the same time period. […]
Despite their inability to engage in extensive lobbying, Catholics in Alliance has been extremely successful in attracting large donors. Never a friend to the Catholic Church, George Soros, one of the earliest donors, contributed $50,000 to Catholics in Alliance in 2005 and another $100,000 in 2006 through his Open Society Institute. Likewise, Smith Bagley, a major Democratic donor and fundraiser, whose wife, Elizabeth Frawley Bagley, is Chairman of the Board of Catholics in Alliance, came close to matching Soros with grants from his family’s Arca Foundation. With a long history of supporting progressive organizations like ACORN, the Gamaliel Foundation, People for the American Way, and Planned Parenthood, Arca contributed $50,000 to Catholics in Alliance in 2007 and another $75,000 in 2008.
Hendershott can’t help but wonder if her writings against progressive groups played a role in her audit. It’s obvious that before she was notified by the IRS she was commenting regularly about matters of faith and politics and, in particular, Obamacare. While she doesn’t have proof that the IRS investigation was political in nature, she has strong suspicions that it was.
“I started writing articles like crazy saying these are fake Catholic groups,” she said of the aforementioned organizations, noting that Korzen would often target her work and rail against her assertions.
Hendershott noted that the progressive leader once called into a radio show she appeared on to challenge her contention that he had accepted Soros money.
“I had the tax return in front of me and read off the amounts that Chris Korzen was getting paid from Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good – a Soros supported fake Catholic group,” she told TheBlaze, noting that, through Catholics in Alliance, he had received $85,000.
While Korzen denied this on the air, Hendershott read from the 990 form in an effort to prove he wasn’t telling the truth. This, she believes, may have sparked – or played a role – in spawning the IRS audit.
“He was getting paid by one organization and working for another,” the professor said of Korzen. ”The IRS should have gone after them.”
Her writings for the Catholic Advocate soon ceased because, Hendershott admits, the IRS audit silenced her. If her suspicions are true, this may have been its chilling intention.
“I haven’t written for them since the audit, because I was so scared,” she said (records show her last article for the organization was on July 10, 2010 – the same month the IRS audit unfolded).
So far, she has only shared her story with friends and those close to her, but in light of the recent IRS scandal, she has decided to speak out.
“It was clear they didn’t like me criticizing the people who helped pass Obamacare,” she said of the audit,” later adding, ”The IRS is very frightening.”
In addition to creating stress and fear, Hendershott said that the experience came at a great emotional and financial expense for the family, noting that even after the audit the government sought more information from her.
“It was like they just couldn’t find what they wanted because they wanted more and more and more,” she said.
In March of 2012 Democratic Senators sent a letter to the Internal Revenue Service demanding that Tea Party groups get extra scrutiny (harassment). The Democrats even threatened legislative action if the IRS did not act.
A group of seven Senate Democrats urged the Internal Revenue Service on Monday to impose a strict cap on the amount of political spending by tax-exempt, nonprofit groups.
The senators said the lack of clarity in the IRS rules has allowed political groups to improperly claim 501(c)4 status and may even be allowing donors to these groups to wrongly claim tax deductions for their contributions. The senators promised legislation if the IRS failed to act to fix these problems.
“We urge the IRS to take these steps immediately to prevent abuse of the tax code by political groups focused on federal election activities. But if the IRS is unable to issue administrative guidance in this area then we plan to introduce legislation to accomplish these important changes,” the senators wrote.
The letter was signed by Senators Charles E. Schumer, Michael Bennet, Sheldon Whitehouse, Jeff Merkley, Tom Udall, Jeanne Shaheen and Al Franken. It follows an earlier letter, sent to the IRS by the same of group of senators last month, that also urged the IRS to better enforce rules pertaining to 501(c)4 organizations.
A copy of the letter is here.
This week Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus of Montana vowed congressional hearings and called the IRS actions “an outrageous abuse of power.” But, over the last three years, Democratic senators repeatedly and publicly pressured the IRS to engage in the very activities that they are only now condemning today.
UPDATE: Inspector General: The IRS targeted EVERY group with Tea Party in its name.
So is that it? Hardly- there’s now a rising call that a Select Committee on Benghazi be convened- but like most things we need to get done these days, that’s going to require
some prodding of Speaker John Boehner: I encourage all to
do just that today.
….then why are Democrats seeking exemptions for their aides
Republicans and Democrats are meeting right now in discussions to exempt staffers from this horrible law.
The Politico reported:
Congressional leaders in both parties are engaged in high-level, confidential talks about exempting lawmakers and Capitol Hill aides from the insurance exchanges they are mandated to join as part of President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul, sources in both parties said.
The talks — which involve Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.), House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), the Obama administration and other top lawmakers — are extraordinarily sensitive, with both sides acutely aware of the potential for political fallout from giving carve-outs from the hugely controversial law to 535 lawmakers and thousands of their aides. Discussions have stretched out for months, sources said.
A source close to the talks says: “Everyone has to hold hands on this and jump, or nothing is going to get done.”
Yet if Capitol Hill leaders move forward with the plan, they risk being dubbed hypocrites by their political rivals and the American public. By removing themselves from a key Obamacare component, lawmakers and aides would be held to a different standard than the people who put them in office.
Any Republican who does not stand against this deserves to be voted OUT of office!