Turley Testifies Before Congress In IRS Commissioner Impeachment

800px-Capitol_Building_Full_ViewOn Wednesday morning, I have the honor of appearing before Committee of the Judiciary in the United States House of Representatives. The hearing entitled “Examining The Allegations of Misconduct of IRS Commissioner John Koskinen” will address the options facing Congress in addressing alleged misconduct by Commissioner Koskinen. The hearing will start at 10 am in Room 2141 of the Rayburn House Office Building. My testimony is linked below.

Since the hearing is focused on the options rather than the merits of congressional action against Commissioner Koskinen, I will be solely addressing the range of remedies available to the Congress under the Constitution. Having served as lead counsel before the Senate in an impeachment trial and represented the House of Representatives as an institution in a federal challenge to executive overreach, I do not take such remedies lightly. While Koskinen should have every opportunity to defend his actions, there have been objections that the House could not proceed with an impeachment or even a censure as a constitutional matter. I believe that those arguments are misplaced and that the controversy should serve to focus the attention of members on the array of options available in such cases. This includes my long-standing suggestion of a comprehensive review of both new and dormant powers that could be used in such conflicts between the branches. Congress, however, is facing an unprecedented erosion of its authority vis-à-vis the Executive Branch. If we are to see a rebalancing of the system, it will require a more active use of sanctions to deter obstruction and contempt of congressional committees.

Here is the testimony: TestimonyTurley.Censure.House.final

70 thoughts on “Turley Testifies Before Congress In IRS Commissioner Impeachment”

  1. This IRS commissioner snubbed a congressional subpoena. How conceited and pompous is that. The fact remains, the IRS admitted they harassed Conservative groups.

    But I bet they harassed the general public. I gave money to McCains campaign and after Obama’s election, I was audited for 3 straight years. I have never been audited. They said I owed them $3000 dollars and within a year, sent it back to me. I feel this is more wide spread than their telling us.

    Their incompetent ninnies. Louis Lerner and anyone in charge of these hit jobs against conservatives should lose their jobs and their retirement.

  2. JackW

    Don’t blame IRS for the 10 year statute of limitations. Blame the same institution that is wasting time and money by going after Koskinen. Years ago they extended the statute of limitations from 6 to 10 years. IRS did not ask for this. Rather, Congress used this as a “revenue raiser” to offset a cut in taxes for some special interest group.

    The same thing happened in December of last year when congress passed a law authorizing the State Department to revoke the passports (and deny passport applications) if someone owes the IRS more than $50,000. It was strictly a “revenue raiser” to offset a gift to some lobbyists’ clients.

    There are plenty of improvements that need to be made to the way the IRS does business, but the Koskinen hearings are the equivalent of giving a sick patient a hit on the head with a hammer.

  3. Turley needs a good course on ethics. He is contributing to a show trial, one in the best, rather worst, Soviet fashion.

    Or else a variation of McCarthyism.

  4. …and how about that ever-changing, ever-adjusted, extended at their whim, SOL? 10 years and they can always renew the sucker. If you are 40, 50, 60, 70!–not a lot of extra decades to spare–they can take a whole decade of your life so you’re just like the dude with the ankle monitor, or like a Norwegian prisoner.

  5. Absolute power corrupts absolutely! The IRS needs to have its balls cut off and left by the side of the road. Its unlimited powers to ruin individual lives, as granted/directed by Congress, is pathological. Its systems are unfair and arcane. Like the justice system, the wealthy buy themselves a good situation while the poor and middle class languish as slaves and serfs in “prison.” Whatever the giant collection agency/its agents and minions did, I just like to see someone going after them.

  6. Sandi, I read body language for a living. But, anyone could see the body language on Koskinen showed lying, anxiety, and cockiness. That smirk was just part of it. But Tin, who sees only what his leader tells him, thinks we should be honored to have this errand boy in such a powerful position. Scary people like that are allowed to vote and drive motor vehicles.

  7. The IRS Commissioner was appointed; not elected? Yes, that’s the way the system works. He or she is appointed by the President for a five year term, and that appointment must be approved by the Senate.

  8. I wonder how many of the complainers watched any of the Koskinen’s hearings. His complete disregard of any questions from our elected representatives was disgraceful. His smirk was disgraceful. Nobody elected him. And the American people pay his salary and have every right to understand what he has accomplished. Nothing! He’s another Obama appointee covering up for his boss!

  9. Tin, It’s sort of difficult to understand you w/ your nose planted in Obama’s anus. Koskinen is a feed off the public trough, bouncer between the quasi public sector and govt. jobs butt boy . You don’t actually think the Chicago cabal picked him for his integrity. That’s just plain stupid. His last private sector job was running the US Soccer Federation, akin to the Olympic Committee; a plum, public trough job. He worked for Bubba in OMB and was the Y2K Czar. LOL! For much of his career he has worked appointed jobs for Dems, w/ his nose planted firmly in his boss man’s butt. That’s how you continue to get the public trough tit jobs. Your comment is embarrassing to all but you. “You’re doing a heckuva job, Tinny.” The only thing that has saved Koskinen to date is the utter incompetence of his adversaries.

  10. When a Federal Judge lies to a pro-se litigant in a civil case, and it is recorded on the court’s official recording equipment, where does that individual take that specific information, on the CD containing the lie, to complain about and to expose the judge’s misconduct? The rules regulating Judicial Discipline don’t cover that problem.

    And, if the Chief Judge of the Circuit Court of the particular District Judge fails to provide a response to judicial complaints within a timely manner, to whom does the offended party appeal?

  11. @Paul S.:

    Let me get this straight…..Lois L. was hired by the IRS to “slow walk” emails that she hadn’t even written yet? Yeah, that makes sense.

    The email issue is that Congress wanted emails that LL wrote while she was a Director in the agency’s Tax Exempt Division concerning the applications of Tea Party groups. The agency’s IT people provided nearly 700,000 pages of her emails. Congress thought there were more, but the IT people couldn’t find them. Rather than floating nutty conspiracy theories, Congress could have recognized what any thinking person knows, that IT people who work for govt agencies aren’t the best. The best IT people work in the private sector where they make significantly more money. Congress could have easily hired a private sector IT group to try to get the emails, but instead they created a show of dragging these low-level IRS tech folks up to the Hill to testify. The most comical one was the young guy who was nearly blind, and had to hold the documents within an inch of his face to read them. The govt has to hire people with disabilities, so rather than pounding on this poor guy for what he couldn’t do, Congress could have acted like adults and simply hired an outside firm to examine the computers. But that’s supposing they really wanted the information, rather than just the opportunity to conduct show trials and impeachment proceedings that are going nowhere and are nothing but a colossal waste of taxpayer money.

  12. Turkey doesn’t have a snowball’s chance in Hell of being appointed to any Federal judgeship, much less the SCOTUS. His bat sh*t crazy tirades against Hillary Clinton, as well as his efforts to legalize polygamy put him well outside the mainstream of American values.

    1. TIN, you’re a smart guy, but you lost me with that post. Why the name calling on Jonathan Turley’s own blog? It bodes poorly on your character no matter your beef with him.

  13. The three branches of government are out of whack- doubt many disagree. The Exec has gone imperial, while Congress is moribund and enthrall to Corp$$, and the Judiciary is ever more politicized. My first thought here: how sad that Turley is unlikely to ever be nominated to SCOTUS because he is so well qualified….

  14. Let us hear more about Hillary’s emails. But. Don’t blame the lame duck Congress for being lame. The Republicans need to get a majority in the House and in the Senate and then they would not be lame. Right? I am for Trump. I will Sieg Heil if he ever gets elected. He has my votes.

  15. Thank you, Professor Turley, for all of your efforts to preserve the balance of powers crucial to our freedom from tyranny.

  16. I do not know why they do not go after Kerry at State as well. Each has been slow walking the emails. I heard Lois Lerner went over to IRS to help slow walk their emails.

  17. @Nick:

    Koskinen is a “career errand-boy?” Where on earth do you get your “facts?” The current IRS Commissioner is a businessman who made a fortune in the private sector, by specializing in rescuing troubled companies. He was asked to lead the IRS to help turn it around following the Lois Lerner scandal. He certainly didn’t need to accept the position, and most multi-millionaires in their 70s would be enjoying retirement rather than putting up with the attention seeking do-nothing clowns in Congress. Koskinen accepted the challenge as a public service and he should be commended for his willingness to share his expertise, rather than attacked by people who can’t even bother to get their facts straight. As far as his testimony, he provided information about the emails based on what the IRS IT people told him. He’s not an IT guy himself and he didn’t personally examine Lois Lerner’s hard drive.

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