Impeach IRS Commissioner Koskinen
Congress Should Exercise Constutional Oversight
Congressman Lamborn released the following statement after the House voted to consider articles of impeachment for IRS Commissioner John Koskinen:
“The IRS intentionally and systematically used their position of power to target conservative groups based on their political beliefs. Though John Koskinen was brought in to restore the trust of the American people, he has continued to withhold evidence, ignore subpoenas, and stonewall congressional investigations into the IRS targeting scandal.
These actions all together indicate that IRS John Koskinen needs to be removed from office. I have been vocal throughout the past months pushing for Mr. Koskinen’s impeachment, and I voted to continue these proceedings. The evidence against the IRS Commissioner is sufficient to remove him from office—we do not need more hearings to determine what we already know.”
- Congressman Doug Lamborn, (CO-05)
House Freedom Caucus Applauds Judiciary Chairman’s Decision to Hold Hearings on Impeaching the IRS Commissioner
The House Judiciary Committee announced it will hold hearings on House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz’s (R-UT) resolution for impeachment of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Commissioner John Koskinen. The House Freedom Caucus released the following statement:
“The House Freedom Caucus applauds Judiciary Chairman Goodlatte’s decision to initiate hearings on the impeachment of the IRS Commissioner. Commissioner Koskinen must be held accountable for years of stonewalling Congress’ oversight efforts, obfuscating justice, providing false testimony before Congress, and failing to hold agency officials liable for unlawfully targeting groups based on their beliefs.
Since the revelation that the IRS systematically targeted conservatives for years, the IRS—under Koskinen’s watch—has done little to reform internal protocol to ensure that every American’s First Amendment rights are protected.
Federal officials must be accountable to the American people. It is long past time that Commissioner Koskinen be removed from his post. The House Freedom Caucus strongly supports these efforts to do so.”
Please click HERE to listen to Congressman Lamborn's radio interview calling for the abolition of the IRS and the Impeachment of the IRS Commissioner.
High Crimes and Misdemeanors
On Thursday, 4/14/16, Congressman Doug Lamborn called for the impeachment of IRS Commissioner John Andrew Koskinen.
This effort was initiated to hold the IRS Commissioner accountable for allowing documents to be destroyed and for providing misleading statement to Congress in the wake of IRS targeting of conservative organizations. I am a proud cosponsor of the resolution and I urging my colleagues to join me in supporting this important legislation.
As it has become abundantly clear, Commissioner Koskinen has failed the American people by stonewalling congressional investigations into the IRS targeting scandal. Conservative organizations were intentionally targeted by our federal government simply because they believed and expressed a message that was in opposition to this Administration. While I disagree with many on the Left, I would never seek to threaten, by means of governmental coercion, to take away their freedom of speech.
Moreover, what is truly disturbing about the IRS scandal is that Chairman Koskinen has violated the public trust. As Commissioner, Mr. Koskinen failed to comply with a congressional subpoena, failed to ensure evidence was preserved, failed to testify truthfully, and failed to notify Congress when he learned thousands of emails were missing.
Our constituents expect Congress to exercise oversight of this Administration and to demand accountability. We know the IRS Commissioner cannot be trusted. Impeachment would help rectify the situation, and would go a long way towards showing the American people that we are serious about our constitutional duties.
Impeachment is the appropriate means to restore balance between our branches of government. The Framers included the impeachment mechanism in the Constitution for precisely this scenario, where an Executive Branch official who violated the public trust will not resign or otherwise be removed from office.
- Congressman Doug Lamborn (CO-05)
House Freedom Caucus Tries to Impeach IRS Commissioner John Koskinen Over Lois Lerner Scandal by Breitbart News
Prominent members of the House Freedom Caucus called Thursday for the impeachment of Internal Revenue Service chief John Koskinen. On the eve of Tax Day, Ohio congressman Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) and his allies Rep. Ron DeSantis (R-FL), Rep. Jody Hice (R-GA), and Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-CO) filed an official order for impeachment against Koskinen, to replace him with someone new so that Congress can finally get the last remaining documents in the Lois Lerner conservative targeting case. Jordan and his compatriots also made speeches on the House floor Thursday evening spelling out their case.
Lerner stands accused of directing an elaborate program of harassment aimed at Tea Party and pro-life groups during the run-up to President Obama’s re-election campaign and throughout Obama’s re-election year of 2012. Koskinen took over the IRS with a mandate to change things after Lerner was held in contempt of Congress by a full vote of the U.S. House of Representatives. But he refuses to hand over the final documents that could show who in the White House knew about the Washington-based “secret research project.”
“When you have individuals running an agency with the power of the Internal Revenue Service doing what was done under Commissioner Koskinen’s watch, he in fact should be impeached,” Rep. Jordan said on the Senate floor. Jordan ran point on the IRS scandal while working under Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) in the House Oversight Committee. Jordan continues to work on the issue in Rep. Jason Chaffetz's (R-UT) Oversight Committee, though less visible progress has been made since Issa’s departure.
“The very lady (Lois Lerner) who was at the center of the storm, who lied when she first made this public, gets brought in front of the Congress and what’s she do? She takes the Fifth,” Jordan said.
“So when you have the central figure exercising their Fifth Amendment right, not willing to testify in public and answer the people’s representatives’ questions, it sort of puts a premium on getting the documents and the communications that the IRS had relative to this issue.”
“So three preservation orders, two subpoenas in place, and the commissioner, under his watch, 422 back-up tapes are destroyed containing 24,000 emails. And what’s Mr. Koskinen do when he learns about problems with these tapes and problems with Ms. Lerner’s hard drive? He waits four months before he tells Congress. …
“That’s why we filed these articles of impeachment and that’s why we are asking that they move forward in the Judiciary Committee and we do what the American people sent us here to do.”
The investigation into Lerner’s improper targeting of conservative nonprofit groups is ongoing. As this reporter revealed, the White House and IRS exchanged confidential taxpayer information on groups during the period in which the IRS was harassing conservatives.
Lerner used the false name “Toby Miles” to send and receive some of her emails, according to a court filing made by an IRS attorney.
The IRS has steadfastly claimed that all of Lerner’s official IRS emails were lost when her computer crashed in 2011, and her computer hard drive was destroyed. But copies of some emails were later turned over to U.S. House investigators. Still more copies were found in backup tapes at a government storage facility in West Virginia.
House Republicans call for impeachment of IRS head by The Hill
A group of House Republicans took to the House floor on Thursday evening to argue in favor of impeaching Internal Revenue Service Commissioner John Koskinen.
“You have an IRS commissioner who breached multiple duties that he owed to the public, and he violated the public trust,” said Rep. Ron DeSantis (R-Fla.).
The lawmakers accused Koskinen of improprieties relating to the investigation into the political-targeting scandal.
They accused him of failing to comply with subpoenas, allowing documents to be destroyed, making false statements under oath and failing to inform Congress promptly when he learned thousands of emails were lost.
House Freedom Caucus Chairman Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) said that Koskinen was brought in to clean up the IRS after the political targeting was revealed. However, “every single duty he had, he breached,” Jordan said.
“As it has become abundantly clear, Commissioner Koskinen has failed the American people by stonewalling congressional investigations into the IRS targeting scandal,” said Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-Colo.).
Last fall, House Oversight Committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) introduced a resolution to begin House proceedings to impeach Koskinen. Lawmakers said that the articles of impeachment should be brought up in the House Judiciary Committee.
Rep. Jody Hice (R-Ga.), a member of the Oversight Committee, said “the American people are well aware that the IRS has placed itself above the law.”
There are political obstacles to impeaching Koskinen.
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Earlier on Thursday, an attendee at an event hosted by Americans for Tax Reform (ATR) asked Rep. Peter Roskam (R-Ill.) about whether there will be movement to impeach Koskinen and whether such an effort would be backed by House leadership. Roskam said he was not sure, citing the dwindling length of Koskinen's term, the short congressional schedule and the realities of what the Senate would do if the House took action.
Roskam said if Koskinen were impeached, "the question then becomes who would come along and who would be the new person. And I think that there is an advantage to having the current IRS commissioner in place in that you know exactly what he's going to say, exactly what he's going to defend, and so forth."
ATR president Grover Norquist said that even if it doesn’t make sense to oust Koskinen now, “the man deserves impeaching.” House GOP committee members call for impeachment of IRS chief by United Press International
Members of a House committee have recommended the impeachment of Internal Revenue Service Commissioner John Koskinen.
Speaking on the House floor Thursday evening, some conservative Republican members of the Oversight and Government Reform Committee accused Koskinen, 76, of improprieties during an investigation of alleged targeting of tax returns, failing to comply with subpoenas, the destruction of documents and emails and making false statements under oath.
The complaints centered on IRS practices and the investigations that followed after retired IRS official Lois Lerner revealed in 2013 the agency used terms including "tea party" to filter tax-exemption applications for additional analysis.
"You have an IRS commissioner who breached multiple duties that he owed to the public, and he violated the public trust," said Rep. Ron DeSantis, R-Fla.
Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, noted Koskinen was installed as commissioner to reform the IRS after the political targeting was exposed, but "every single duty he had, he breached."
Rep. Doug Lamborn, R-Colo., added, "As it has become abundantly clear, Commissioner Koskinen has failed the American people by stonewalling congressional investigations into the IRS targeting scandal."
Two House committees -- Oversight and Government Reform, and Ways and Means – have opened investigations into alleged targeting of conservative groups.
House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., a frequent IRS critic and former Ways and Means Committee chairman, did not join the push for Koskinen's impeachment, saying at a news conference Thursday, "I think this is an agency that has not been led well and this is an agency that needs to be cleaned up. As far as these other issues, look, what I think what we need to do is win an election, get better people in these agencies and reform the tax code so we're not harassing the average taxpayer with a tax code that they can't even understand." For more background, please read the following information on IRS Targeting from the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee.