EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

Opinion

June 22, 2014

Column: IRS spins email yarn as Obama slips another scandal

I have to give President Obama credit: He’s brazen. If he gets away with one lie, he doesn’t wipe the sweat off his brow and vow never to do it again. He ups the stakes.

If you believed the one about “If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor, period,” try this one: The attack on the U.S. Embassy in Libya was just a demonstration about a video! And now: The computer ate Lois Lerner’s emails!

That’s right. Forget everything you’ve heard for a couple of decades from information technology experts that email is forever. That those risqué pictures we posted back when we were adolescents will haunt us when we’re post-30 because once it’s on the World Wide Web, it has the closest thing to life eternal this side of heaven or hell.

Apparently, not if you work for the Internal Revenue Service and you’ve done something that might embarrass or cause legal problems for the president.

By now you may have heard that the IRS announced last Friday -- the traditional day to dump bad news -- that certain emails to and from Lerner, the now-retired IRS official who ran the unit responsible for tax-exempt organizations, have vanished due to a computer crash.

The “lost” emails were from January 2009 to April 2011, a crucial period in the investigation of the agency’s harassment and intimidation of conservative groups, thereby delaying their applications for nonprofit status. The agency later said it also could not find emails of six other employees involved in the scandal.

No other time period was affected. Nor was there any problem reported with other emails in the agency -- just those that might have shed light on whether the corrupt targeting of those groups was simply a case of a few “rogue” agents in an Ohio office, as the administration claimed at the start, or whether there were connections higher up in the administration.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Opinion

Helium debate
Helium
Political News