"The how and the who is just scenery for the public... Keeps 'em guessing like some kind of parlor game, prevents 'em from asking the most important question, why?... Who benefited? Who has the power to cover it up? Who?"Many on the left are quick to dismiss the idea of a conspiracy or cover-up with regards to the IRS's extra scrutiny given to conservative/libertarian organizations. They make claims like "no conservative organizations were ever denied tax exempt status" or "no one in the White House new of the practice" or "it was just the actions of a small group of low level employees". But, as we now know for a fact, those claims were purposefully misleading or outright false.
~ Donald Sutherland, JFK
While it is true no conservative organizations were denied, they were delayed, for years, most still waiting for approval. In the meantime, liberal/progressive organizations had their tax exempt applications fast tracked. not a single one was targeted for additional scrutiny.
We also know through congressional testimony that it wasn't just a small group of low-level employees responsible for the IRS's actions. They testified they were following orders. They routinely referred organizations, such as pro-Israeli groups, to the IRS's Washington D.C. offices for additional scrutiny, which shows the practice was wide spread across agency departments.
Finally, we know both through testimony and recent White House admissions that they in fact did know the practice was going on. They even conspired to release the information just days before an official report of the practice was made public so that they could appear to be forthcoming and not purposefully ignoring the scandal. While they still claim to be absent any blame for the policy, it is clear they willfully ignored the problem to the benefit of the president.
To what benefit you may be wondering.
That's just it, isn't it. The heart of "why". The simple answer is the 2012 re-election of president Obama.
According to official reports, the IRS targeting of conservative/libertarian groups began as early as 2010 after tea party Republicans swept into the House and Senate, stealing control of the House from Democrats and breaking their stranglehold on the federal government. The groups targeted are permitted by law to spend up 49% of the donations they receive on political activities. By subjecting these groups to extra scrutiny and delaying their approval until after the elections, the Obama administration was able to block potentially millions in additional campaign spending and GOP get out the vote efforts.
As we know via post-election exit polls, GOP turnout was significantly down as a result.
The damage the extra scrutiny the IRS gave to these groups isn't limited to the 2012 election. As most senators have been quoted as saying of late, it has created a chilling affect among potential conservative/libertarian donors because they fear giving money to these kinds of organization will wind up with them being audited and targeted for harassment by the IRS. And as anyone who has been audited by the IRS knows, that is something you want to avoid at all cost because they IRS will find something, even if their is nothing to find. They will look and look and mike your life miserable until they find something.
Unfortunately, the "Why" of this IRS scandal is not getting enough attention from both the mainstream media and conservative radio hosts and bloggers. It is crucial that the why of it gets out, because the why leads directly to who benefited, who has a vested interested in keeping the scandal covered up, and ultimately who is responsible.